Can Principal Turnaround Bronx New York Public School from Closing?

In a recent article, principal of DeWitt Clinton High School Santiago Taveras, plans to save the Bronx New York public school from closing. Under the Mayor Michael Bloomberg administration, the school was scheduled for closing to be replaced by smaller schools. Even though Taveras was responsible for many of the New York School closings, Mayor de Blasio has structured a plan to save 150 of the many large comprehensive New York public schools that are failing.

Mayor de Blasio has opted to transform failing schools by providing an extra hour of instructional time each day, providing teachers with additional professional training, offering summer school, and turning the troubled schools into Community Schools, which will address many of the challenges that students face outside the classroom by offering mental health services and food for students who do not get enough to eat at home. Mayor de Blasio intends to spend $150 million dollars over the next two years to ensure the success of the initiative.

The principal for the New York public school is excited about the mayors new educational initiative. Taveras said, “I spent time phasing out schools at the D.O.E., which is fine; I don’t regret any of that,” Mr. Taveras said of his time at the central office of the Education Department. “When I heard de Blasio say he wasn’t going to close schools, I thought, That’s interesting. What are we going to do instead? I want to be a part of that.”

According to the article, After Closing Schools, a Principal Fights to Save a Bronx High School, Mr. Taveras has implemented several changes in the Bronx New York public school which include meeting and greeting students everyday, visiting teachers classrooms, removing posters that indicate that firearms are prohibited, replacing security dividers, walking the halls and picking up trash, reduction in student fights, and dividing the school into small learning communities. Mr. Taveras has taken steps that are consistent with reframing organizations outlined by Bowman and Deal.

One such frame is the Symbolic frame. Included in the Symbolic Frame are rituals and ceremonies. In the context of school, rituals provide structure and meaning into the daily life of school. Rituals are simple day-to-day operations. The meeting and greeting of students everyday, visiting teachers, and walking halls while picking up hallway trash provide meaning for school life. Mr. Tavaras is conveying the importance of students, teachers, and cleanliness in the school.

Mr. Taveras began holding pep rallies. Pep rallies are consistent with ceremonies. There is a similar connection between rituals and ceremonies with the exception that ceremonies are grander, more elaborate, and held less frequent. Student pep rallies are grader and are held less often when compared to rituals.

Some of the primary symbols that Mr. Taveras removed that reveal the importance of safety were removing posters that indicate that firearms are prohibited and replacing security dividers. Even though the security measures were reinstalled due to the history of school security, it represents the symbolic importance of security at the New York public school.

Dividing the New York public school into small learning communities is consistent with the structural frame. Small learning communities provide vertical coordination for enhanced control and planning of staff, students, and resources.

The New York public school principal indicated the importance of human capitol when stating that “the crucial element to improving the school will be getting all of the adults to work together, rowing in the same direction”. This statement is consistent with the Human Resource Frame. One primary assumption for the Human resource Frame is that people need each other for ideas. This shift of thinking in the New York public school will provide the necessary ideas, energy, and talent needed to turn the entire school into a high performing school.

Mr. Taveras has time and structure to his advantage. He only needs to pilot the following process to turn the Bronx New York public school around.

  1. Choose one small learning program to pilot a team building process. This works better because you are training staff members to assist with leading the entire staff in the future. When other staff members witness the success that the chosen small learning program is implementing they will not present any challenges for future initiatives.
  2. Have staff members in the small learning community to create a shared vision that focuses on student achievement. Focusing on students achievement provides that emphasis for all staff members in the small learning community. A shared vision will provide unity amongst the staff as well the energy needed to accomplish the small learning community goals.
  3. Have the small learning community to develop three goals that are consistent with the shared vision. Because high school teachers are normally compartmentalized they will normally what to focus on content specific goals. If this allowed the teachers will not work as a team. Instead have them work on academic achievement that is consistent with every content area. For example, writing across the curriculum is not content specific. Math can be taught in each content area. Note taking skills will benefit each content area too.
  4. For each goal develop 10 objectives. The 10 objectives will serve a benchmarks for accomplishing the three goals.
  5. Develop an assessment for each objective. That way there is no disagreement as to whether the objective was accomplished.
  6. Assign at least three teachers to accomplish each objective. This way you force teamwork and communication amongst all teachers. Make sure that the tasks are delved out evenly amongst the teachers.
  7. Develop a timeline for each objective. Since you want to finish all goals by the end of the year, use May as the culminating month.
  8. Celebrate the small learning community accomplishments. Determine a specific date to bring together your entire staff to show case the teachers accomplishments.
  9. Turn key the process for the other small learning communities.

Using the described process will ensure that the New York public school begins the turnaround that is necessary for high student achievement.

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About Classroom Racism Exterminator

Racism is a menace and so we’ve been taught for ages which is the primary need for a diversity expert. However, even in this modern society of today where we see a lot of colored celebrities performing on stage with huge fan followings and of course an Afro-America President for the USA, we are still in a phase where racism exists in all its brutal glory and has been eating away at the society like a plague. Classrooms, are one of the most affected areas where color differences and racism exists to its extremes. Even after decades of progress and a lot of communal efforts at bridging the gaps between colored students, white students and teachers, it is sad to say that the disparities still exist and are just as pronounced today as they were back in the 1950s. Colored students, even in the likes of New York City, are attending under resourced schools or have been significantly isolated and made to be unequal in regular schools. Even if the teachers are well-intentioned, perpetuating the structural racism that has taken deep roots into the fabric of our education system is a tough task and make the need for a diversity expert imperative. Teachers need to recognize the biases that exist within the classroom and also take conscious measures to address them and their own biases of course. James Baldwin once said, “it is your very own responsibility to change this society, if you think of yourself as an educated person.” Dr. Derrick L. Campbell took this quote very effectively and straight to the heart and thus this Classroom Racism Exterminator happened. Classroom Racism Exterminator is an initiative that will teach you about your duty and moral obligation towards eliminating racism from the classrooms. This is where and how you will learn about what you need to do to produce a better society that is free of biases and disparities amongst the blacks and the whites. Because we understand how classroom biases and conversations about racism are difficult and how teachers and students almost avoid the topics altogether, we have put together a range of effective methods and products to help address the problem at hand and talk meaningfully to counter issues related to race and racism in the classroom. Diversity expert Dr. Campbell understands that it takes a lot of courage to talk about race and racism and that racial issues need to be viewed through a very critical lens that can understand and attend to the pertaining aspects of racism in the classroom. And therefore through this website we have made a conscious effort to eliminate racism from the classroom and make the educational system equal and beneficial for all. We know and we understand that there are no words that can actually describe how racism feels. There are cases and everybody tends to deal with it in their own manner. Some might lash out verbally or others might just withdraw into shells. Whatever the case, people don’t talk about it openly and teachers don’t really make a conscious effort at addressing the issue. We don’t really know if our children or if the youth is learning to be educated or become racists in their classroom. Our program is focused on helping children of color and regardless of their race, their full potential. We want every student to be able to recognize and reach their full potential so that they think of themselves as responsible citizens of their country and not regard themselves as worthless human beings. Here you will find motivational books and flash card games, all of which have been designed focusing on eliminating racism completely from our classrooms. The books and the games have been consciously designed keeping in mind the American society and educational system. It is a small effort on our and Dr. Campbell’s part to help this society become a better place to live in. A little about diversity expert Dr. Campbell Dr. Derrick L. Campbell the driving force behind Classroom Racism Exterminator is a dynamic figure and a constant source of motivation for us. He has a Bachelors of Science in Electronics Engineering Technology, Math Education, a Masters in Education Administration and also holds a doctoral degree in Educational Leadership. Dr. Campbell is a well known personality throughout the nation. He has lectured at various events including the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Iron Sharpens Iron Men’s Conference and a lot of local churches. He is a personality well dedicated towards eliminating the plague of racism from our classrooms and helping every child recognize his/her true potential not the color of their skin. He realizes how a child would feel if he/she was made to think they are worthless human beings. Diversity expert Dr. Campbell is compassionate and related to the experiences and therefore this initiative is a constant and continual effort to eliminate racism manifested in us, completely from the classroom and from our society.
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