We’ve realized, the longer we’ve been connected, there can appear to be a hierarchy of sorts online. We are quite clear where we rank in that hierarchy (near the bottom to middle) so recognize our perceptions may not match that vantage point of those near the top or wanting to be near the top.
We choose to be connected educators because we believe there is power in that connectedness. Twitter and other social media platforms offer many ideas, resources and inspiration for us to use in our practice and reflection. Many of these ideas are found in incredible blog posts written by our colleagues. And once in awhile, we write a post that we hope helps someone.
However, sometimes there are blog posts, comments and tweets that aren’t so incredible or inspiring. In fact, sometimes, they are downright condescending. Instead of encouraging, challenging or inspiring, these posts demean or ridicule the practices of others.
We acknowledge the desire to be innovative, to challenge the status quo, and to push the thinking of others. This is important to moving our profession forward. However, our work is too big for any edu-writer to spend time declaring a singular way to do something. School not ready for Google Apps? That’s ok. Your school’s not ready to abandon its math program? That doesn’t necessarily make you a bad leader or teacher. When you can admit that you aren’t there yet, It makes you honest. I know no one leader that has every initiative and effort fully implemented to the capacity he/she would like. We’re a work in progress. We are evolving. We run human organizations with human needs. And, leading with heart and putting kids first doesn’t allow a prescriptive or standard approach.
Some of the best bloggers we know, including Peter DeWitt and the team behind Leadership 360, open the doors wide open and allow many guest posts on a variety of topics. We are grateful for that. The work of running schools and improving schools is a combined effort and one that requires all of us to be honest and upfront about what is really happening (and NOT happening yet) in our school. There are enough sources outside twitter (and our respective PLNs) that work too hard to tear down the work of schools. We simply won’t feed it into that. Agree or not agree, if you write on a topic, remember your audience. People like us who turn to your blog post for ideas, reflection and inspiration.