Culture of Caring

I’ve had the great fortune over the last few days to engage in several conversations about ideal schools. One of the wonderful things about Educon is the serendipitous mingling that happens. Even though the sessions go through a proposal and approval process, and are meticulously planned by the facilitators, there’s always an element of unpredictability when they can go off EdCamp-like in any direction. So the idea of what makes a great school came up quite a few times. We talked of the challenges of testing and common core and unfunded mandates and professional development. We discussed the need for … Continue reading Culture of Caring

A Common Purpose

It’s 8:30 on a Saturday morning, and I’m sitting in a rapidly filling high school cafeteria in Philadelphia. As I look around, a see a few familiar faces, and even more familiar names. But for the most part, these are strangers. They’re not part of my world. They’re from urban schools. Charter schools. Parochial schools. Private schools. They’re teachers. Integration specialists. School leaders. Professors. Students. They represent 40 states and five countries. ¬†Zoe Strauss’s opening comment from the previous night’s panel discussion leaps to mind: Chris, what the hell am I doing here? The panel had included some pretty heavy … Continue reading A Common Purpose