"High Achievement always takes place in the framework of high expectation." - Charles Kettering

Saturday, November 13, 2010

November 13 already? Sheesh!

I have been busier than a one-armed paperhanger, as my mother used to say. It's entirely possible that this phrase is not PC and/or offensive. If so, I apologize. But I always thought it conveyed a true sense of being overextended in one's schedule. I cover the school board meetings for the Review now and am thoroughly enjoying the experience. I can't get snarky like I can here, but as long as I don't specifically post the same stuff, Kelly was OK with me blogging too.

Look for my article about district data analysis coming soon in the Review, possibly this week. This week should have a brief report on the Nov. 8th meeting, which had some newsworthy information.

The sheer mountain of data provided to the school board in preparation for the November 8th board meeting leads me to believe that the administration is not clear on what parameters they want to monitor, so they monitor them all. Just look at the administrators' reports on the website to become glassy eyed with data overload in minutes. Demographics about enrollment, EEN population, Economically disadvantaged data, WKCE, MAPs, ACT, alphabet soup heaven all neatly presented in a table to compare to three different sets of schools: those our size, those in our conference and those in the area. My God in Heaven, UNCLE! It took me 2 days just to digest it to the point of deciding how to begin the series of articles describing district student achievement. Yikes! TMI if ever there was TMI. And I love data.

I'm sorry I have neglected my blog lately. I need to find a balance between my paying job and my fun blogging. Given the choice, I do prefer to be snarky whenever possible. I also like being paid, so I need to balance my world. I haven't even had time to take down the Jamboree posters at the elementary and intermediate schools.

I'd like to plug the 8th grade careers unit on this blog. They have begun in the last few years to focus the 8th graders on career exploration. I have volunteered the last 2 years to do the exit interviews for the kids after they explore their 3 top choices with presentations by people in their chosen fields. I am once again struck by the self-confidence exhibited by the modern 13 year old kids. Last year I interviewed kids who ranged from barely coherent they were so nervous to completely engaged and at the "you're hired" level of confidence and awareness. This year most of the kids were in the mostly aware and very comfortable chatting with a strange woman. (Except for the notable exceptions of 2 of my daughter's soccer teammates who already knew me). If the modern educational system takes a lot of flak for its many drawbacks, one thing it should proudly take credit for is the ability to foster this self-confidence and self-awareness in today's youth. Yeah kids. Good show, JC McKenna!

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