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Reflections: Curriculum Management

Posted by Hope Scott on Tuesday, February 22, 2011 Under: curriculum management
Reflection One: Educational Leadership Constituent Council Standard 2 “ELCC Standard 2: Candidates who complete the program are educational leaders who have the knowledge and ability to promote the success of all students by promoting a positive school culture, providing an effective instructional program, applying best practice to student learning, and designing comprehensive professional growth plans for staff.
Curriculum management is essential to success in our schools. The information learned will help me to not be so obstinate when it comes to making the curriculum work for me. I now understand that the curriculum includes what is written, taught, and tested. I also now understand that the curriculum must be aligned vertically from Pre-kindergarten to twelfth, and horizontally within an instructional level. I think that the most poignant or touching think that I will now keep in mind is that the curriculum must ensure that every student has the opportunity to learn. This is important because I do have a lot of special needs students in my class because they need the Technical Applications credit. They really cannot do or understand all that is being done in the class. But, I now know that I must ensure that they are successful, even if it is in the smallest area, like being able to type part of what they see in the text. This will help me as an instructional leader because many teachers feel that if our special needs students cannot do the work they need to be taken out of the class. I now want teachers to see how little successes may be what these students need to be successful and confident as adults outside the classroom.

Reflection Two: Educational Leadership Constituent Council Standard 5 “ELCC Standard 5: Candidates who complete the program are educational leaders who have knowledge and ability to promote the success of all students by acting with integrity, fairness, and in an ethical manner.
Curriculum management audit is an area that is very relevant for our school. We are rated "acceptable" but are trying to become an "exemplary" school. The curriculum management audit is a powerful tool that can be used to help our school evaluate the effectiveness of our curriculum. Many teachers complain that the scope and sequence of curriculum does not prepare students for what will be tested on TAKS in a timely manner. With that in mind, as an educational leader, I would look at what is written, taught, and tested in light of timing for TAKS and college entrance exams success. I would like to create a professional development which addresses the curriculum needs of our campus. Each foundation department would be encouraged to share tips for cross-curricular use of TEKS that students struggle with.

This approach can only help the students on campus. When course are aligned vertically and horizontally, students will benefit. For instance, writing is already aligned across the curriculum because students must write in all classes. Also, students see social studies in action everyday and can be asked to comment or reflect of events around them. I think every teacher on campus encourages students to write a current event. But, we need to have the same type of alignment in math and science. This will be a challenge; but it is an area where we are weak and need more professional development to move our campus to the next level.

Collaboration is very important in all aspects of life because no one lives in a vacuum. This is especially true in education. Teachers must work with one another and the campus educational leader. To be successful in improving student learning, "Leaders must support the move toward instructional conversations (Garmston, 2007)," according to Robert Garmston.[1]

Reflection Three: Educational Leadership Constituent Council Standard 6 “ELCC Standard 6: Candidates who complete the program are educational leaders who have the knowledge and ability to promote the success of all students by understanding, responding to, and influencing the larger political, social, economic, legal, and cultural context.
Curriculum management must focus on individual learners. Relating important issues to staff members involves reaching them where they are. We have many staffers who are rather stuck in their ways. I heard gossip in the lounge about a teacher saying to her evaluator that he was not old enough to evaluate her. I do not know how true this is, but it is an issue with older teachers. Many would rather retire than be criticized by a younger peer. Many feel that they know what needs to be taught, despite what is written in the curriculum. Ethical issues I may face is finding a diplomatic way to address the teacher who does not want to change. I know I will face the four stages of change referred to in Dr. Arterbury's lecture.[2] I also know that I need to get most faculty to level four so that they can encourage their peers to work with the system instead of against it.

The major guiding principle for everything we do in education is student success. This success is driven by data. That is one area that almost no one can argue with, data. My guiding principle will be data-driven and will include more than the AEIS report. I must also look at other student data, including our mock tests scores.

As a campus-level leader, I must understand the TEKS for all courses, foundation and enrichment. I should be able to articulate to teachers what should be taught and tested. As a campus leader, I may be responsible for making decisions about what is best practices which can be gained from school district and state leadership. My job is to make sure that our school produces increased students progress over time. Again, according to Dr. Artebury, "Every school system must establish a clear, valid, and measurable set of student standards for learning that reflect the essential knowledge and skills specified by the state." As an administrator, it is up to me to make sure this happens.

Our district allows teachers to present workshops during the summer months to peers. As a campus leader, it would be incumbent upon me to share best practices I gain from my experience. We also are a High School That Works campus. This is another way that information can be shared not only with our school, but, through workshops, schools around the country.

[1]Garmston, R. J. (2007). Results-oriented agendas transform meetings into valuable collaborative events. Journal of Staff Development, 28(2), 55-56.
[2]Elvis H. Arterbury, Department of Educational Administration. (n.d.) Lamar University, Beaumont, TX. Epic Courseware.

In : curriculum management 

Tags: garmston curriculum "curriculum management audit" "educational leadership constituent council standard" 

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Hope Scott I am a Web Technologies teacher. I created this blog as part of my Master of Education in Educational Technology Leadership for Lamar University, Beaumont, Texas.

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