Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Why do I lead and why am I an educator?

Thanks to George Couros (@gcouros) for setting up a great opportunity for administrators to connect.  You can follow our journey on twitter at #SAVMP (School Admin Virtual Mentor Program).  George posted two questions- "Why do I lead?" and "Why am I an educator?"- for us all in his opening SAVMP blog.  I attempted to write this blog by separating the two questions but I found that to be quite difficult.  I think that leaders are educators and educators are leaders.
Case in point- I am with six colleagues (another principal and five classroom teachers) this week at the Teachers College in New York City learning more about the Writer's Workshop.  We learned a lot the first day and had a chance to share our thoughts at lunch, on the subway, at dinner, and on a walk that evening to find a good place for ice cream.  Educators are always learning and I love to learn, not in isolation, but with others.  We are also charged with returning to our district and sharing what we learned.  We will be the leaders for the staff, sharing what we have learned, answering questions, and providing support.  Now back to the questions.
"Why do I lead?"  I lead because I have been given opportunities throughout my career as an educator.  The administrators that I worked with, whether as a teacher or coach, saw something in me and fostered my growth.  I hope that I have been able to do the same for the great teachers I have worked with in my time as an assistant principal and principal.  I lead to help develop well-rounded students and staff.  I lead to help others have a positive impact on students.  I don't have all of the answers, but I'll let people know that we will work together to find the answers.
"Why am I an educator?"  I am an educator because I am a learner.  I want to reach as many students as I can.  I want to help prepare our students for a future we don't even know.
Why do I lead and why am I an educator?  It's just who I am.