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Personal Vision Statement

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Personal Vision Statement

  1. 1. Personal Vision Statement Standard 1.0: 1.1 Develop a Vision Kevin Hajduk As one generation after another inscribes their place in history, there are countless traditions, values, and lessons that are learned. One of the utmost essential lessons that the current generation has learned from the others past mistakes is that a formal education is the key to a successful future. The young generations of people living in this world are faced with a tremendous amount of pressure that leads directly back into the classrooms. The children of today need to be more prepared than any other to face a world that becomes progressively more challenging every day. Without the appropriate leaders, role models, and optimistic adults in the school, our future leaders will be unprepared to face a changing world. The following document signifies my beliefs about supervision and related areas, which was created from my research and experience in the classroom. The School Community A school community is best represented by a strong bond between all of the staff members. For each student to be completely successful there needs to be a clinical approach to supervision. According to Morris Cogan’s clinical approach model (as noted in Sullivan & Glanz, 2005) short term and long term goals need to be in place and all of the members of the school must be fully aware of what that goal is and how they can help each child accomplish the goals. Each school must work together, without any hierarchy of positions, in order for the school environment to be successful. Each member of the building should have a sense of importance to ultimately improving their skills and the skills of all the students in the building. Edward Pajak (2000) views
  2. 2. clinical supervision “as a vehicle for developing professional responsible teachers who are capable of analyzing their own performance, who are open to change and assistance from others, and who are above all, self directing” (Sullivan & Glance p. 118). The supervisor in the school is the direct individual who will promote the climate of the building as one that enhances learning. Goldhammer, Anderson, and Krajewski (1993) summarize that the clinical model “requires a high degree of mutual trust and assumes a professional working relationship between teacher(s) and supervisor(s).” Democratic principles are used to allow teachers to feel self-directed, responsible, and competent for the children in their classroom. Influenced largely by Dewey’s (1929) theories of democratic and scientific thinking, these democratic principles are used by the supervisor to promote a feeling of openness for useful feedback relating to professional and personal instances. This sense of openness gives all the members of the school, including the students and parents, a feeling of safety and comfort in the building. Bureaucratic conceptions of supervision do not apply in an effective school community because the teachers and staff get a feeling of uselessness, which directly affects the way they teach. The Classroom Setting The supervisor spends approximately twelve fifteen minute sessions in each classroom per year in order to get a sense of the classroom throughout the entire year rather than for a one time formal observation. The classrooms have clear overarching objectives and the teachers are engaging all of the learners into the lesson. Overarching objectives give students big picture outcomes which shape core practices and increase
  3. 3. student achievement (Saphier and Gower, p. 551). The students in the classroom are visibly able to interact positively with their teacher and the students never feel rejected by their limited skills or incorrect answers. There are many different ways to teach children and the supervisor does not believe that his way is correct. The supervisor is open minded and willing to learn from the other teachers and provide detailed feedback to each teacher throughout the school year. Prompt, simple, and useful feedback is given to all of the teachers so that if a teacher is abruptly struggling, a solution can be put into place and limits the amount of ineffective instruction that is affecting the students in the classroom. Saphier and Gower (1997) confirm that good teachers do not succeed alone; instead they solicit help and lots of feedback on their work. Supervisors are important bridges to providing this needed feedback to their staff. It is important for the supervisor to align planning periods with each grade level and/or subject teachers. Planning with their peers, the teachers are able to compare results and/or frustrations with one another, which can improve student outcomes and effective teaching strategies. These planning periods are also used to incorporate the concept of unit plans into each classroom. The importance of unit plans are that each classroom has a clear vision and can incorporate all of the learning styles into their classroom. Technology is used to prepare the students for a technologically diverse future and the teachers in the classrooms are proficient with using the technology that surrounds them. Staff development sessions are available for all teachers who find it difficult to incorporate technology lessons into their classrooms.
  4. 4. Teacher Observations Teachers work extremely hard each day to create lessons that are valuable to improve student outcomes. Supervisors should be seen in the classrooms daily. It is quite impossible for the supervisor to observe a lesson daily, but a simple morning gesture to each class is important to the overall structure of the building. The purpose of observing the classrooms is not necessarily to observe the teacher, but to also get to know the students in the building and how they are learning each day. There are numerous ways that the supervisor observes the teachers and the lessons they teach. Formal observations should be varied and include the ability to assess the teachers’ awareness of the diversity and learning styles in the classroom. Madeline Hunter’s lesson plan model clearly incorporates the necessary steps to exceed student performance. With the help of this model, the supervisor can offer teaching strategies that could improve the quality of instruction in the classroom. This model is applicable to all classrooms because diverse learners exist in any environment where people learn. The overall meaning behind observing a teacher lesson is to offer a mirror of what is happening in the lesson. With this mirror comes a stimulus for change. By providing teachers with useful feedback, the supervisor is engaging the teacher in reflective thinking and discussion based on what areas of teaching can be improved or continued. Aligning each classroom lesson to the core content standards is vital for ensuring that each classroom is promoting the “standards of excellence” needed for engaging all students. According to the New Jersey Department of Education, these standards describe what students should know after completing their high school education. In order to successfully offer the students in the building a thorough and effective
  5. 5. educational experience, each lesson design must align to the core content standards. Consistent with the overall observations of the building, it is the responsibility of the supervisor to observe the incorporation of the standards into every classroom. Weekly observance of each teacher’s plan book will assist the recall of how the teacher’s are incorporating the standards into each subject matter. Effective feedback techniques are the key ingredients in assisting individuals to maintain strengths or make appropriate changes in a lesson. Using Glickman’s development model (2004) as an approach to providing feedback to the different levels of feedback, educators can prove successful in maintaining a trustworthy relationship with the staff. According to Glickman, the approach used by the supervisor depends on the specific level of development of the teacher. These approaches are altered to help manage the amount of control there is when providing feedback to a teacher. According to research completed by Glickman, the teacher’s level of development, expertise, and commitment and the nature of the situation determines the choice of approach. Professional Development Similarly to what is expected from the students in the building, learning by the teachers in the building also needs to be consistent to district policies and also ongoing. According to Lieberman (1995), people learn best through active involvement and through thinking about and becoming articulate about what they have learned. As a supervisor, I strongly agree that being an active participant in learning is crucial to understanding the concept at hand. It is my responsibility to engage the staff in meaningful professional growth opportunities within and outside the district. As the
  6. 6. administrator in the building, my goal is to promote the initiative that effective educators are life-long learners, that professional development must be an on-going process of refining skills, inquiring into practice, and developing new methods. Feedback from the staff members is important sequentially to realize the areas of professional development that needs to be concentrated on. Included in the professional development standards in the building, the teachers must have adequate opportunities to learn about technology and the usefulness of implementing technology into the classroom. I am in agreement with The National Education Association’s belief that making the tools of technology available is important, but that's just the first step. The staff members in the school need to be fully prepared and supported in the instructional use of technology, which is critical for its productive and effective use. Teachers and school staff must know how to do more with technology than simply automate practices and processes. They need to learn to use technology to transform the nature of teaching and learning. The technology environment of today's public schools should match the tools and approaches of the work and civic life that students will encounter after graduation. This will ensure that schools stay relevant to today's students, as well as equip them for success in life after school. Leadership and Governance The current pressures that are put on today’s teaching professionals, in regards to state testing and increased expectations for student outcomes, often leaves many excellent teachers frustrated. The supervisor’s role in the school system is to use his leadership skills to help facilitate the amount of effective teaching in the building. The teachers and
  7. 7. staff in the building need to feel that they can approach the supervisor at any time to gain feedback about a topic in school or out of school. The supervisor is personable and able to get the best out of his staff and students everyday because those same individuals enjoy what they do daily. This task is not always easy, but when the staff and students in the building are governed to feel as an important piece of the entire puzzle, this task becomes easier. The supervisor is not the overseer of the building but rather the facilitator, collaborator, and guide. The supervisor is influential in setting the tone of the school. It is a necessity that he is aware of the culture of the school and capable of building upon better techniques to improve the overall culture of the building. When the students leave the building each day they should have a sense of accomplishment and warmth that the culture of the school exalted. It is the role of the supervisor to increase the awareness of teacher expectations on overall student achievement. Alerting teachers and staff that they must self-evaluate their teaching styles and ultimately renew them often will help increase teacher effectiveness. It is important that the supervisor is also visible at professional development sessions and also flexible at allowing teachers to attend these workshops to better their teaching effectiveness. Concluding Statement As a supervisor, I will lead by example. What I cannot ask of myself, I cannot ask from any staff member in the building. I will be just and reasonable in the suggestions and criticisms that I make in the building. The success of the school is not on my shoulders as the supervisor, it is on all of the staff members in the building because
  8. 8. everyone in the building has obligation to strive for effective teaching. The ultimate goal in education is to have all students succeed. As the supervisor in the building, this is also my ultimate goal.
  9. 9. BIBLIOGRAPHY Textbooks and Other Resources Dewey, J. (1929). The sources of a science of education. Mew York: Liveright. Glickman, C.D., Gordon, S.P., & Ross-Gordon, J. (2004). Supervision of instruction: A development approach (6th ed.). Boston: Allyn & Bacon. Goldhammer, R., Anderson, R.H., & Krajewski, R.J. (1993). Clinical Supervision: Special methods for the supervision of teachers (3rd ed.). Fort Worth, TX: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. Lieberman, A. (1995). Practices that support teacher development. Phi Delta Kappan, 76, 591-596. National Educator Association: Technology in Schools. http://www.nea.org/technology/index.html Pajak, E. (2000). Approaches to clinical supervision: Alternatives for improving instruction (2nd ed.). Norwood, MA: Christopher Gordon. Saphier, J., and Gower, R. (1997). The skillful teacher: Building your teaching skills (5th ed.). Acton, MA: Research for Better Teaching, Inc. Sullivan, S., and Glanz, J. (2005). Supervision That Improves Teaching (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.
  10. 10. BIBLIOGRAPHY Textbooks and Other Resources Dewey, J. (1929). The sources of a science of education. Mew York: Liveright. Glickman, C.D., Gordon, S.P., & Ross-Gordon, J. (2004). Supervision of instruction: A development approach (6th ed.). Boston: Allyn & Bacon. Goldhammer, R., Anderson, R.H., & Krajewski, R.J. (1993). Clinical Supervision: Special methods for the supervision of teachers (3rd ed.). Fort Worth, TX: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. Lieberman, A. (1995). Practices that support teacher development. Phi Delta Kappan, 76, 591-596. National Educator Association: Technology in Schools. http://www.nea.org/technology/index.html Pajak, E. (2000). Approaches to clinical supervision: Alternatives for improving instruction (2nd ed.). Norwood, MA: Christopher Gordon. Saphier, J., and Gower, R. (1997). The skillful teacher: Building your teaching skills (5th ed.). Acton, MA: Research for Better Teaching, Inc. Sullivan, S., and Glanz, J. (2005). Supervision That Improves Teaching (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

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