"Is there any reason for a lack of vision in education?"
At a recent meeting, the keynote speaker asked us several questions about our organization and one of them was:
"Who would you follow?"
Who would you leave the safety and security of your tenure and seniority for? Who is that person in your organization that you want to work with - to plan with - to dream with?
I have been thinking a great deal about vision, or the lack of it, in our educational systems for quite a while. As a Fellow in Communities for Learning, vision is one small part of a Framework that has been developed to look at school improvement. But I am beginning to think that if I had to weight them - it would be one pretty important part.
I am not just talking about a "vision" statement that is created by a committee and done for the sake of compliance. I am talking about an understanding of where we want to be - what it will look like, sound like, be like for students, teachers, administrators and parents. Something that we hold in our sights, revisit and refine regularly, reflect on at the end of a good day and a bad day. Something to move toward.
I am not sure that I have seen one of those. I have met lots of teachers and leaders who are trying but clarifying vision and making it something manageable and achieveable can be daunting. We might speak it once in a meeting and then never again after we have been given "the look" by our colleagues or leaders. Or we might push for it - every day and in every way - only to be disappointed in the obvious lack of vision that we are handed.
I know that I don't have the answers - but I love the fact that more and more people are posing the questions. But the real thing I am interested in is
What are we going to do about it?