How to win the war and transform your school – Book Review- Transforming School Culture


There’s a war waging. Bullets are flying, bombs are bursting, and the kids are the casualties. School Leaders are on the frontlines. The battle is for school culture, and ultimately the future of our students.

The opposition has been winning since John Dewey had his one-room schoolhouse. But, there is a way to tip the scale. You just have to know who’s in the platoon and which weapons are at your disposal.

Do you want to win the war?

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Interrupting patterns of participation in staff meetings

You want to disruptpatriarchy and white supremacy in the curriculum and in our learning outcomes. But, these patterns of oppression start in our adult interactions, and boy does it show up in meetings. Although difficult, it is possible to take action with some critical reading, radical norms, and the use of process checks.

In order to change outcomes, your staff needs to talk about teaching and learning in different ways. This requires new mindsets, tools, and ways of being.

Many times, white male staff feel very comfortable speaking up, speaking first, and filling the time. Sometimes, this gets disguised as “the voice of experience” because many staff of color tends to be younger, newer to teaching, and more transient in large urban school districts. But, the result is that people of color and women are often quieted and marginalized.

Silenced.

It’s time to turn up the volume. But how?

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