Sunday, October 2, 2016

Fearless to Fail Forward

The past few weeks have been saturated with moments of highs and lows.  Our discipline is down significantly, in fact we have the second lowest number of office referrals in the entire district.  Our Little Indians are showing kindness, empathy, and utilizing strategies pro-actively to calm themselves.  I watched a first grader the other day tell his friend to calm his amygdala down and helped him control his breathing (which was impressive in so many ways).  It's evident to everyone on our campus that our staff is working hard to implement every strategy they can to keep our campus calm and put the focus on our academics.

Then there have been the lows.  We have some new students that are showing signs of trauma and stress conditions.  It's hard not to feel overwhelmed trying to get them services they need to be successful in life.  It's just a testament to the fact that our public schools can't do it alone.

We need everyone.
The families, the community, everyone.

Luckily, we have that support at Vero beach Elementary.  Just one phone call to Ladell Young, head School Resource Officer, and he was at our school ready to mentor one of our students who professed that he plans to be an officer when he grows up.  If you knew his past, this would be such a welcomed surprise.

The lows also come streaming in with the reality of how much work we have to do to help our students meet proficiency.  Looking at our current conditions, over 80% of our students are below grade level in reading and in math.  This means we have an urgent need to get them the very best teaching, diagnostics, and interventions.

Our staff is working so hard.  They are here at night, on the weekend, before the sun comes up and after the sun goes down.  They are the hardest working faculty I have ever seen.  Ever.

The work we have to do will not come unless every single person is willing to do the following:
  1. Take risks
  2. Reach out for support
  3. Admit when they don't know how to move forward
  4. Be willing to get coaching
  5. Realize that they can't do it alone
  6. Collaborate, and not just share ideas
  7. Find value in each others strengths
  8. Acknowledge that we all have weakness
If we can do this together, we are unstoppable.  I'm a firm believer in our TRIBE of fearless educators.  We just have to be willing to hear that we may not be perfect... yet.

We currently started a VOXER group for the Innovators of Indian River County.  One of the innovators tonight mentioned that she wants to work with her students on growth mindset. That really resonated with me. 

While we may not be an "A" school right now, if we can be willing to take risks, admit shortcomings, grow together through collaboration and our mistakes... then the real statement is we are not an "A" school YET.



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