Preparing for Criticism and Critics

Preparing for Criticism and Critics

The new school year is upon us! Our schools will soon be teeming with students, staff, and parents.

The Honeymoon

We will enjoy the new school year honeymoon. Teachers will be refreshed, all of the students still have A’s, and no one has misbehaved. Everyone has just arrived from Lake Wobegon“where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average." Happy Days, or Mayberry, are here again!

It will not last. I’m not being “a Debbie Downer.” The reality will set in soon enough; not everyone is from Lake Wobegon. Inevitably criticism will come. Some of it will be deserved, much of it will not be. Expecting and preparing for criticism are the best ways to profit from it, reduce stress, and avoid discouragement. As James Clear observes:

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7 Habits of an Online Learning Leader

7 Habits of an Online Learning Leader

7 Habits of an Online Learning Leader

Most K-12 Schools are embracing online learning as a way to solve problems. Some examples include a need for more advanced courses, more foreign languages, solving schedule conflicts, and credit recovery. The 2015 Keeping Pace Report states that “Millions of students are taking supplemental online courses while attending a physical school.”

Many schools have only a foot in the water (of online learning) so to speak. They are ahead of schools that have not started, but certainly not where they may want to be nor where they will be in three to five years.

For schools just starting out in online learning, there are 7 habits that a school leader needs to have in order to bring success to their campus and their students. 

The 7 habits of an online learning leader are:

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Understanding the Fiduciary Duties of the School Board

Understanding the Fiduciary Duties of the School Board

Here at Directorpoint, we’re eager to make board members’ lives a little bit easier. We know that serving on a board for a company or a nonprofit organization takes a lot of time and effort—that’s why we’ve created board management software that’s smart, intuitive, and able to streamline boardroom communications. We also think it’s important to share our knowledge of good governance practices. That’s why we recently began posting a series on our blog called “Board Member 101,” which seeks to outline and describe the various responsibilities of modern directors.

The first provides important insight on how to leverage online learning in the classroom and in your school. The second provides important information for board members and administrators who deal with boards.

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How to Respond When Treated Unfairly, Even Viciously

How to Respond When Treated Unfairly, Even Viciously

You and I have experienced the pain of being falsely accused and treated unfairly--perhaps even viciously. How should we respond? 

R.C. Sprout offers extremely helpful insight when dealing with the pain and anger associated with such mistreatment. The following is R.C. Sproul's article, A Charitable Reaction ... 

Years ago, I received a letter from a friend who is a pastor at a church in California. In it, the pastor included a copy of an article that had appeared in the Los Angeles Times. Although the article included a photo of him standing in his church and holding his Bible, it was basically a vicious personal attack against him.

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The Curious Case of Dr. Doyle, His Unwanted Creation and the Deceitful Feet of D.D. Hume

The Curious Case of Dr. Doyle, His Unwanted Creation and the Deceitful Feet of D.D. Hume

“But it can’t be all that difficult to be a ventriloquist, on the radio,” I replied somewhat sarcastically. “I mean you’d have to turn the volume way up to see your lips move.”

In an outdoor restaurant overlooking Port au Prince Bay, the enigmatic Dr. Cooper was absent-mindedly entertaining our Haiti mission team with an artifact from his trunkload of stranger-than-fiction memories. This one was about a stint as a puppeteer on his own radio show. But he wasn’t really paying attention to us, his mind was too busy being enslaved by a game on his new smart phone.

I tried to bring him back to into the real world.

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Update! Going Paperless: Better Than Ever with New Hardware and Applications!

Update! Going Paperless: Better Than Ever with New Hardware and Applications!

One of my most popular series of posts explained _Why and How I Went Paperless and How You Can Too--There Had to be a Better Way! _My first paperless [article] was posted in May, 2013. 

It is time for an update. After three years my workflow is still paperless. The hardware and application options are better than ever making a paperless workflow easier, less expensive, and more productive than ever. 

**Benefits of Going Paperless**
There are many benefits to going paperless. In addition to what I listed in the first [article], I would include the following:
- I have everything I need, anytime, anywhere, on any device
- Less stress
- Less clutter
- Less stuff to carry, especially when traveling
- Improved integration of personal and professional projects
- Sets an example of technology integration for my staff
- Keeps me current with the times and tech "savvy" 
- Easier and more enjoyable than juggling both paper and digital content

More... 

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Add Value to Your School!

Add Value to Your School!

A great way to strengthen our schools is to increase Marginal Value for our parents. 

Marginal Value can be understood as the calculation that parents make that an increase in tuition is worth more than other discretionary purchases. As tuition increases, parents make a calculation that the added cost is or is not producing an incremental value equal to or greater than the increase in cost relative to other educational options and purchases. If parents do not perceive the quality of education provided to be of more value than other options, parents will choose those options.

In short, we increase Marginal Value by giving parents more for their tuition dollars. 

A great way to strengthen our schools is to increase Marginal Value for our parents. 

Marginal Value can be understood as the calculation that parents make that an increase in tuition is worth more than other discretionary purchases. As tuition increases, parents make a calculation that the added cost is or is not producing an incremental value equal to or greater than the increase in cost relative to other educational options and purchases. If parents do not perceive the quality of education provided to be of more value than other options, parents will choose those options.

In short, we increase Marginal Value by giving parents more for their tuition dollars. 

A great way to strengthen our schools is to increase Marginal Value for our parents. 

Marginal Value can be understood as the calculation that parents make that an increase in tuition is worth more than other discretionary purchases. As tuition increases, parents make a calculation that the added cost is or is not producing an incremental value equal to or greater than the increase in cost relative to other educational options and purchases. If parents do not perceive the quality of education provided to be of more value than other options, parents will choose those options.

In short, we increase Marginal Value by giving parents more for their tuition dollars.

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The Power of Habit

The Power of Habit

Have you stopped to consider the tremendous power habits--good and bad habits--have on your character, your life, your relationships, your health, and your leadership?

Habits are unconscious but powerful. Consider this except from The Power of Habit:

When you woke up this morning, what did you do first? Did you hop in the shower, check your email, or grab a doughnut from the kitchen counter? Did you brush your teeth before or after you toweled off? Tie the left or right shoe first? What did you say to your kids on your way out the door? Which route did you drive to work? When you got to your desk, did you deal with email, chat with a colleague, or jump into writing a memo? Salad or hamburger for lunch? When you got home, did you put on your sneakers and go for a run, or pour yourself a drink and eat dinner in front of the TV? 

“All our life, so far as it has definite form, is but a mass of habits,” William James wrote in 1892. Most of the choices we make each day may feel like the products of well-considered decision making, but they’re not. They’re habits.

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