We've reached the middle of the academic year. It is a fair expectation that schools and their management teams, educator groupings and governance structure have a good sense of the institution's development trajectory for the year. SGBs would, if they've been fulfilling their governance mandate, know if their cash flow projections are as expected, whether the institution's budget will be realized, if capital or infrastructure plans will be successfully rolled out and if the school's systems are effectively supporting the operational management of the school.
School management teams would have concluded the first phase of admissions for next year, should be in a position to provide clear indications of the learner outcomes to be expected and if academic targets will be met, would have conducted a detailed diagnosis of the challenges that remain and given serious thought to remedial action or a treatment plan to help learners realize their academic expectations.
Each teacher will have embedded their expectation within the mindsets of the learners too. They know each learner by name, their weaknesses and their strengths. They know what to do next and have completed their planning for the next term.
The learners at the school have clear direction. They have no doubt about the sacrifices that they need to make to succeed, They've seen their mid term examination scripts, understand the mistakes they made and know how to rectify the errors given they've been walked through the marks achieved.
Parents know what their children have achieved. They understand the role they are expected to play going forward and will commit by playing their part through the later part of the year. The management of the school communicated the next steps and parents are not confused. Parents have received the PTA notices and know if holiday programmes are taking place, which subjects are on offer and whether their child/ren must be there. The school manages this entire process, including feedback to the parents when learners are not playing their part. The communication channels are open and fully functional.
All the stakeholders attached to the institution are ready to move forward. This is the normal and logical view of a school that is serious about its role.
The reality is that not all schools can tick off the-above statements. Some of these are foreign practices. These schools simply roll over day-by-day, without real purpose or pursuit. These schools have no future view, and often reminisce on what was, how learners have eroded value systems and the staff yearn for a return to the 70s/80s. The institution is often tired, wasting away under the guidance of management teams that are simply clicking over their days left before they collect their pension. They've given up on the battle to school the future.
My question is...which statements represent your school? And if you at a tired school, what are you doing to change the playing field? Do leave a comment if you have an input to make.