#Suptchat Recap: Unfinished Leadership: A School Leadership Framework
In case you missed last night's #suptchat, the Paper team is here to provide you with a comprehensive recap.
Superintendents Michael Lubelfeld and Nick Polyak facilitated this month's conversation between school leaders about “Unfinished Leadership: A School Leadership Framework”—the title of their new book.
Q1: There is no "best" version of ourselves, only the "next" version of ourselves. We are all Unfinished. Share a picture or a .gif that captures the idea of embracing the idea of being an Unfinished Leader.
Perfection is an impossible goal. We can, however, make progress by accepting that our greatest strength can be the will to change and grow.
A1: Just read a great blog by @gcouros that helped me reflect on empowering educators to try new things, take risks, & look at failures as opportunities for learning. Creating a culture where we strive to elevate one another is always a focus for leadership growth. #suptchat pic.twitter.com/0WWJmPuK5H— Mary Havis (@maryhavis) May 6, 2021
Q2: Unfinished Leadership starts with empathy. If you are going to serve others, you need to understand them and empathize with their needs. How do we get better at empathy as leaders?
When you’ve put yourself in another person’s shoes, you have a greater understanding of what they need and how to lead them to it.
A2: A few things that come to mind about being an empathetic leader are truly listening with an intent to understand & being honest and authentic. Seeking input, being supportive, and building relationships help create space for productive problem solving discussions #suptchat— Mary Havis (@maryhavis) May 6, 2021
A2: In order to truly show empathy, we must listen to what others are telling us...not keep pushing our own agenda...strive to put our own ego to the side and understand and serve others around us- BELIEVE in others. As leaders, ego has to be checked at the door- daily. #suptchat— Dr. Courtney Orzel (@drorzel) May 6, 2021
Q3: Unfinished Leaders have a way of unearthing and addressing inequities in our schools. What are you tackling right now or what equity issue in your distri needs tackling?
There’s a lot of work to be done, and every district will be different, but we can create equity by being open and honest with what we see.
A3: @AnaheimUHSD BLM Taskforce write & BOT approved equity policy; now writing Restorative Justice BOT policy; moving fwd w/ implicit bias PL; Ways2Equity Playbook; Grading for Equity; Ethnic Stds grad requirement; cult responsive pedagogy & more. #suptchat pic.twitter.com/bUuq4GA6vf— Dr. Renae Bryant (@DrRenaeBryant) May 6, 2021
Q4: Our schools should be constantly adapting and changing to meet the needs of our students. How will school look and feel different after this pandemic?
Certain elements will feel familiar, but there’s no question that things have changed. What will stay?
A4: More access to services (esp. mental health), technology, and more personalized (competency-based) education need to keep happening. We need to take care of each student, teacher, administrator, and family. It's a tall order, but it's the right mindset. #suptchat #village— 𝔻𝕣. 𝕊𝕙𝕒𝕟𝕟𝕒 𝕊𝕡𝕚𝕔𝕜𝕒𝕣𝕕 🍎 (@SSpickard) May 6, 2021
Q5: Not all professional development is effective. What is the most valuable PD you've ever done and what set it apart from all of the others?
There are a finite amount of hours wherein leaders can cultivate their staff’s professional lives. How do you maximize this precious resource?
A5 #suptchat Most valuable PD I've ever done is PD (or teaching) where the learners produce meaningful and actionable "evidence" of their learning - can be EcCamp @EdcampUSA can be @AASAHQ or @IllinoisASA hands on workshop - Agency Voice of Learner is the set apart to me pic.twitter.com/1s9K3kT5tR— Michael Lubelfeld (@mikelubelfeld) May 6, 2021
Q6: Old answers won't always work to solve new problems. Who do you turn to to expand your "bag of tricks" and help you solve the modern challenges of school leadership in 2021 and beyond?
It’s not hard to find tips. But it can be challenging to find credible, realistic, and applicable tips.
A6: I love learning from new and seasoned teachers--we cannot forget the experts on the frontlines, putting thought into to their practice everyday. We have to approach new answers collaboratively....the smartest person in the room.....is the room. Model what we expect.#suptchat— 𝔻𝕣. 𝕊𝕙𝕒𝕟𝕟𝕒 𝕊𝕡𝕚𝕔𝕜𝕒𝕣𝕕 🍎 (@SSpickard) May 6, 2021
Q7: The book lays out a six part framework for school leaders (empathy, equity, adapt, develop, communicate, lead). What do you think you need to most focus on as a leader right now?
Remember, as an unfinished leader, you are allowed to have your priorities change. But, for now, this is what participants hope to tackle.
Q8: When you embrace the concept of being Unfinished, you have a constant need to grow and evolve. How do you help instill this mindset in all of the people in your students, your staff members, or your colleagues? #suptchat
Transparency, leading by example, allowing for modelling. Give yourself an allowance to be vulnerable and let the world know you’re learning too is what participants are saying.
A8 #suptchat We are all works in progress - instilling this mindset in all people in the organization is a life journey - a life mission and a calling. Keep improving, iterating, re iterating - trying, succeeding, trying, not-succeeding - never stop! Share your story! pic.twitter.com/hKJN6CwFHQ— Michael Lubelfeld (@mikelubelfeld) May 6, 2021