Spring Break 2020 – not the relaxing holiday I was anticipating.
On March 17th the provincial government announced that all in-class instruction was being suspended indefinitely throughout BC. School districts were suddenly being tasked with turning our primarily face-to-face teaching paradigm on its head — to move everyone into a virtual teaching platform by the end of Spring Break.
To be clear — we were not being asked to move the entire district to an on-line platform. We were not creating a system of on-line teachers and learners. We were being tasked with creating remote learning during a crisis.
As this school year draws to a close I have begun to reflect on the year that has been — and its importance to my personal and professional growth. And because I love Star Wars — I have now connected some of this learning to the wise and articulate Yoda — master of the Jedi Knights.
So, without further ado … here are some of my 2018-19 reflections as Superintendent. May the Force Be With You:
YOU WILL ONLY FIND WHAT YOU BRING IN
Yoda, The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
Yoda told his young apprentice (Luke Skywalker) to not take his anger, fear and weapons into the dark cave as bringing these would only result in conflict. His words proved to be prophetic.
In life we bring both our negative and positive experiences to a current situation. I reminded myself this year to leave my negative reactions at the door and remain open to new ideas, thoughts and opinions. Fear and anger do not open doors, but close them.
Like many people in education I’ve been through a few interviews — for myself it’s probably somewhere north of 30. It sounds like a lot and I suppose that it is a lot. However, sometimes there were multiple interviews for the same job — positions like Science Department Head where I needed to interview in several different schools, or in the case of my current position as Superintendent I had 4 rounds of interviews.
And if I look from the other side of the interview table when I worked in Human Resources, district leadership and school administration I’m sure that I must have interviewed at least 300-400 people.
Be Yourself — It’s the Person You Already Know the Best
So, all being said, I’ve been in a ton of interviews. I can’t even accurately estimate the number of resumes that I’ve read — it must be over 2000.
And over my past 30 years in education I’ve noticed a few things that I think can make a big difference when someone is applying for a job. I thought that you might be interested in hearing some of them.