Thursday, February 10, 2005

I'm back!

Though maybe you hadn't noticed I'd gone away. My internet at home went down - plus I've been very busy in the evenings with yoga classes and just spending time with someone who came back from Texas Sunday night.

Let's catch up.

Last Thursday, the regional superintendent visited, with her deputy superintendent. We knew about the visit in advance, and spruced everything up. I wish that a superintendent's visit weren't such a Big Event with so much attention paid to cosmetics. Then again, it's good to have a kick in the rear once in a while to actually fix that bulletin board border that got ripped. And I think, given the size of the NYC school system, that the two-layer system of superintendents is wise. The Local Instructional Superintendents work with smaller numbers of schools and are more hands-on in their approach; our LIS stops by all the time, unannounced. The Regional Superintendents fill the political role of superintendent.

The visit was successful. They visited many classrooms and were impressed by our rigorous curriculum. They made some suggestions about giving students more of a voice and also making sure that the kids understand exactly what they have to do to meet the expectations for a given project. I wasn't teaching when they visited, but I briefly talked to them about how we go about planning for Science at our school. One good sign for the future of our Region is that they know how to look beneath the veneer: they talked to children chosen at random, asking probing questions about what was happening in class, and they also spent a good deal of time looking through one child's writing folder, again, chosen at random. I like knowing that smart people are in charge.

More to come....

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