CCE staff and partner reflections on our collaborative work to create schools where learning is engaging and rewarding, and every student is set up for success.
What do you believe about kids? What do you believe about learning? Do you always act how you believe?
This list of questions is a tool for reflection and discussion. A fundamental belief at CCE is that all kids are capable of learning to high levels. All kids are capable of deeper learning. This shouldn’t be controversial, but in our work facilitating professional learning, we know from experience that we need to foster our ability to effectively engage people about words and behaviors that run counter to our commitment to high expectations for all.
Maine superintendent John Davis once asked his faculty, “Are we here for all kids, or just for the willing and able bodied?” There’s only one right answer. The list puts a sharp point on the question of every kid – the way Davis’ question does. We hope this list will galvanize you to join us in standing up the next time you hear something like, "Personalized learning is fine for gifted kids, but ..." or, "Oh, our kids couldn't do that," or, “This is all we can expect from …” We hope this list helps you start reflective conversations about how we can fully act in line with our beliefs.
These are pointed and confrontational questions, for sure. However, it is necessary at times to confront assumptions that underlie our colleagues’ work, and undermine our students’ success. Confronting these underlying biases and assumptions can be uncomfortable. These questions bring the discomfort to the fore in order to help us realize that new ways of thinking are required and possible. This is only the beginning of the conversation. Yet, it is a strong beginning, because if we are aware that these conversations are necessary, we can begin to have them. We can begin to align our actions with our belief in high expectations for all students.