Strategic vs. Slow

Strategic vs. Slow

Am I just imagining things, or are more and more educators using the term “strategic” when they want to move slowly? Since when does having a strategy mean that there is no hope for reason to feel urgency.
I believe in research and I believe in planning, but these things do not seem to have anything to do with how quickly you can get things done.
I have had major conversations about making sure that everyone is on the same page before we move ahead with an initiative or roll out a new tool. While I seem to agree in principle, I think it is much more about our wish for everyone to be great, rather than it is based in reality. In reality, you will never have everyone on the same page. In reality, you wouldn’t want all teachers to be doing the same things in their classroom, only reaching the same kids. Why shouldn’t we let the truly exceptional work and ideas be what they can be? Why shouldn’t we run with a great, well thought out proposal, even if it doesn’t fit in with a strategy of standing still.
Now, I am not interested in only my ideas. I am not so egotistical to believe that I have a monopoly on change. However, it is my contention that the glacial pace of educational reform is not in place because of a lack of good ideas, but rather, it exists because of a lack of urgency.
How do we show the immediacy of how powerful connected learning is? How do we make sure that all of what we say has an overwhelming sense of need? I love the direction that our schools are headed, but I worry that we are going to strategize ourselves out of options for saving public education and reaching our kids. Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

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  1. Leslie Maniotes

    I was just thinking along similar lines. Thinking about what you have explained to me about PLN’s… I work with DPS and am contracted to do professional development with their librarians and tech teachers. Most of my focus is on inquiry learning, because of the book I co-wrote, Guided Inquiry: Learning in the 21st Century.

    I am tossed up about the content of the inquiry for our January session. We want participants to go through the process of inquiry over the course of the day and we want them to collaborate. After learning about PLNs I think it would be a wonderful Professional Development to help teachers “walk the walk” (like you guys talked about in the interview past blog post “Cross Posting..”). They don’t have time to do this on their own. What a gift it would be to help them get connected in this way over the course of a day’s PD.

    But do I know enough to jump in here… but if I have this information and hold back…aren’t I doing an disservice to them? and to try to get it all right is denying that the learning process is messy and that the teacher (facilitator) can’t know it all…We need to move beyond the need to be great ourselves and have a bigger push to LEARN! Thanks for your thoughts!

  2. I think that you are right on in thinking that it is counterproductive to hold back on learning because you assume that they aren’t ready for it yet.

    I am coming to realize that the only real kind of PD is going through an experience that you all share (presenter included). If you would like to flesh out what that might look like, I would love to talk that through.

    Are you going to go to Educon 2.1? I think that someone from the Council should. Head on over to I would also recommend that you sign up for CoLearning 2009 ( Talk to you on Thursday.

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