Cross-posted at Principals in Training
This video is the product of two students (Ben Enbom and John Hassen) at my school, Sir Francis Drake High School. The ONLY thing I did was give them the driving question. We collaborated on this project – well, it’s more like I mooched off of their artistry and passion for film. I didn’t follow them around, I didn’t pick the people they interviewed, I didn’t review the final edit. We talked ahead of time about my general ideas for this week’s chat and I trusted them to do the right thing. And guess what? They did the right thing. Why am I so un-surprised? I see kids doing the right thing all the time – they just want more opportunities to make meaningful contributions to the mini-verses of our schools…and beyond.
I’ve thought this question over for years – long before I stepped into my “authority/boss” role as assistant principal: while education certainly is a service we provide, the best classes I’ve been a part of (as a teacher, as an observer) feel like startups – everyone working shoulder-to-shoulder to create something unique. It got me thinking: do we really want to continue a model where we TELL kids what to do and how to do it, or do we partner up as co-workers? If we want them to be college/life/universe ready when they depart our (high school) shores, shouldn’t we give them the chance to ACTUALLY have a say in how those four years go?
I threw down a CHALLENGE in advance of the chat: (more…)