I just realized that I haven’t published a new post on this blog since September!
I have some excuses. I’ve been pretty busy at work and at home, both.
On the work front, first, some context: I no longer teach in the classroom, don’t know if I ever made that clear here. I moved into a district-level position in the Bronx over a year and a half ago. The first year in that role I spent getting my bearings. Things grow increasingly political in such positions, and I’ve been hesitant to fully speak my mind. I found myself sitting at a desk all too often, a strange predicament since I hadn’t had a proper desk for over a decade, and I was often pining for being back in a school. I worked a little with schools directly, but was mostly confined to delivering external professional development sessions that were useful for extending my own learning, but that did little for the teachers attending them, since the studies and reports that have been done on PD have made it pretty clear that PD needs to be embedded within a school and sustained over the course of at least a year in order to have impact on student learning. (Here’s my synthesis of those findings).
This year, the powers that be have allowed me to work more directly with schools rather than conduct external PDs. I’ve been working primarily with what are termed Renewal schools in the Bronx. I am now very rarely back at my office. Instead, I’m in schools, meeting with teacher teams, observing lessons, giving feedback, or conducting sample lessons. This keeps me pretty busy.
Meanwhile I’ve got a baby at home, a now 8 month old boy, who I try to devote whatever remaining drops of attention and time I have to once I finally make it home.
Here’s a picture of my little man.
So there’s my reasons for not posting.
But there’s been plenty I’ve wanted to comment upon, and there will be plenty more that I actually shall, so bear with me. And I’m working on a bigger project that if you like this blog, you’ll definitely enjoy–you’ll hear more about this in the new year.
It’s been quite a wild and woolly year, for our nation and for public education. I truly hope that this new year can help us find a clearer path to forge for new political involvement and civic commitments.
Wishing you, and all of us, a more focused and positive new year as a nation, world, and species.