Seventeen Warnings For The Dysfunctional School District

1) Be afraid if many reports, which sound important, are read by few and taken seriously by fewer.

2)  Be afraid if a critique is thought to substantiate the inadequacy of the person voicing the observation.

3)  When fundamental problems are reported, be afraid if the usual solution is to humiliate the person making the assessment.

4)  Be afraid if job threats are common, if folks are required to feel lucky to work.

5)  Be afraid if important decisions are only made at the highest levels.

6)  Be afraid if the latest educational craze trumps twenty years of experience.

7)  Be afraid if supplies, even textbooks, are tightly controlled, while millions are spent on worthless programs and workshops.

8)   Be afraid if anger is never an appropriate response, if the only correct emotion is cheerful compliance.

9)  Be afraid if the enforcement of the discipline code varies from day to day.

10)  Be afraid if professional development sessions are invariably inane.

11) Be afraid if certification trumps qualification.

12) Be afraid if genuine dialogue is always lateral but never vertical.

13)  Be afraid if a bad idea tends to stay in motion until acted upon by a bad idea.

14)   Be afraid if you make a distinction between keeping your job and teaching.

15)   Be afraid if evaluations are not about evaluating, if they are about intimidating.

16)  When forced to choose, be afraid if it is better to be viewed as compliant rather than competent.

17)  Be afraid if posting this list could get you into trouble.

John Samuel Tieman, Ph. D.