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What if Students Graded Teachers?

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The top 2 concerns most Principals and Superintendents share with me are: 1) how to motivate disinterested, disconnected, disruptive, angry students to want to learn and 2) how to deal with ineffective, reactionary, "difficult" teachers (and parents) without conflict, confrontation and intense, community-wide backlash?

I'm Just Asking: What if Students Graded Teachers on Quarterly Report Cards (anonymously for safety purposes) on the following:

  1. Teacher delivery.
  2. Teacher knowledge of subject.
  3. Teacher attitude toward me as their student.
  4. Teacher's attitude toward class as a whole.
  5. Teacher's willingness to teach me until I understand.
  6. Teacher's willingness to provide a safe social emotional classroom for me to learn in.
  7. Teacher's willingness to play well and get along with others.

What if Teachers graded Principals, and Principals graded Superintendents - anonymously? What if Parents graded Teachers, Principals and Superintendents? Scary, eh? Well, we'd certainly know specifically what we needed to improve upon within the entire educational system. In reality, everybody is being graded anyway, and the results are showing up in the students grades and personal well-being - regardless of a formal community-wide grading system being put in place - because the students' grades directly reflect the answers to the questions above.

Academic Success 101 Online CourseI was the kind of teacher that was bothered when students failed on something I had just taught. It bothered me so much, I would not only teach it again, I would seek to discover what I had missed in my presentation.

Years later, I worked for a National seminar company where I received evaluations from audience participants every day after each full day training in a new city, five days a week. I would study these evaluations every night before sending them in to the company, to learn about what they did and did not like about my performance. Talk about a "need to do better and do better right now" kind of a learning experience!

After my first six months on the road, I received a compilation of my first 4000 audience evaluations. I scored at the top of the professional speakers for this company, and had only 12 people who hated me! Really, hated me! The company sent me the 12 evaluations so I could figure out how I could improve. Which I did. I spoke to 16,000+ more people within the next year and a half, and the company didn't send me any more evaluations like the first 12, ever again.

Now, which evaluations do you think got my attention? The 3988 that loved me, or the 12 who hated me? In looking at the 12 "hated her" remarks, my first thought was that there was NO WAY to please any of these 12 people. But being the competitor that I am, I love to win people. A win to me means a smile or an "aha" on their face... meaning internally to me that I at least made a bit of a difference in this person's life today.

So today, I'm simply posing a question ....

What IF students gave teachers Report Cards? Would you have something to work with when sitting down with teachers or administrators, to come up with effective "solutions" together? The operative word here is: Solutions!

There are many PBS - Positive Behavioral Support - programs out there for schools to invest in and implement school-wide.

But I will tell you honestly, that while PBS works on a very good percentage of the students, the students that we are still not succeeding with are a result of educators not having the specific tools and skills to deal directly with the Attitudinal variable that keeps kids disconnected, disinterested, disruptive and angry.

As you are making your plans for next year, please spend some time to consider my www.AcademicSuccess101.com Training, which will give you everything you need to take the PBS model to the Next Level without an extensive, exhaustive and complicated system to put in place.


Mary ReynoldsMary Robinson Reynolds, M.S., Educational Psychologist, Author and Producer of the world renowned Internet videos, MakeADifferenceMovie.com and AcknowledgmentMovie.com - both amassing over 10 million views within a few short months of their releases - spent many years as a classroom teacher K-8 and then as a counselor K-12. She parlayed her phenomenal success with youth at-risk into her programs for business leaders, entrepreneurs and managers on how to be energetically effective in leading improvement in their organizations through the power of Team Synergy and MasterMinding. She has written eight books, developed UTrain&Coach programs that anyone can take into their place of work to build organization wide Team Synergy, and has presented to over 20,000 people in two year period in every major city in the U.S. To learn more go to: makeadifference.com

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