Monday, May 25, 2009
Sunday, May 24, 2009
Saturday, May 23, 2009
Just a thought that has more to do with labor than memorial, but then Memorial day feels often more like labor day.
For Those Interested in Making a Difference
Facilitation is the sustaining of opportunities, resources, encouragement and support for the group to succeed in achieving its objectives, and to do this through enabling the group to take control and responsibility for the way they proceed. The facilitating leader is a facilitator with a vision. The use of facilitation finally answers the question of how to motivate people. The answer is not about motivation. It is rather about inspiration. To produce or arouse a strong feeling is the only direct path to quality, effectiveness, health, profitability and personal well being. I have never been successful in generating high sustainable levels of motivation as a leader. I have been able to create authentic environments that reach into individuals and free what is best about them. We who are living in environments that inspire have virtually been able to do away with regulatory quality checks, abolish watch dog forms and reporting mechanisms, and focus on doing the job right rather than short term concerns of profitability, quality control, or human resource management.
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
The Theory of Supreme Excellence. The cause of supportive and nurture based education is understanding the student’s spirit and essence. This act of understanding leads to a reliable guide of the students divinity (interests) and will reveal the required functional skills which will be embraced by the student.
Based on Herzberg’s theory, students are not motivated by higher grades, special privileges, or grade level advancement. Students are motivated by expectations of success at challenging assignments. A teacher reports that the students primary concern is to feel that they have control in the advancement of their own destiny. It is the teacher’s job to provide opportunities for students to achieve so they will become motivated. The theory of Supreme Excellence requires opportunity be based on the individual talents and divinity of the student. Herzberg asserts that 80% of satisfaction comes from achievement, the task itself, responsibility, advancement and growth. . When a teacher was talking about Larry she could see that his obsession was a solid factor in his learning. If he is interested he is able to find information and learn it according to the teacher.
Seymour Sarason (1993) points out that one truth of education is that we view children as in need of taming. The data reflected this, as some professionals would say that, especially during the transition years, the children must learn what the real world is and how to deal with it. “Where students are” is ignored and “what students are” is something we should fear and therefore, tame or extinguish, according to Sarason. Sarason further asserts that the result is we have classrooms in which students are passive, uninterested, resigned, or going through the motions, or unruly, or all of the above. The Theory of Supreme Excellence is supported by Sarason’s work. Are teachers getting lost in the details of daily living? Viewing peoples actions, interests and behaviors as only relevant to the present. Better for the students and us is to see the three dimensions of behaviors actions and interests of past, present, and future. What people do, say and dream now are communications of desired futures based on past experiences and the truth of the soul (destiny).
Saturday, May 16, 2009
Thursday, May 7, 2009
Yesterday I heard a women give testimony to the legislature against a funding bill. She was not actually against the financial expenditure aimed at Special Education. She was opposed to the bias for educating children with disabilities in the general education environment. She spoke of the need to remain true to the federal law (IDEA http://idea.ed.gov/ ) which calls for the placement decision to be with the IEP team. The women referenced "advocates for inclusion" as a pejorative.
This is a common refrain and it is time to uncover the bias in that statement. What a century of social research tells us is that one becomes a participating and contributing member of society when one is integrated. The act of integration being defined as personal social integration and societal participation (Wolfensberger, Social Role Valorization 1983)* is the key to being a healthy and productive citizen.
What we have now is an unemployment rate that is 59% higher than the rate of nondisabled workers (http://ohsonline.com/Articles/2009/02/06/Disabled-Unemployment.aspx). The median adjusted family income for disabled workers is about half of the median for others aged 18-64 ($13,323 compared with $24,487) [http://www.socialsecurity.gov/policy/docs/chartbooks/income_workers/di_chart.pdf]. So if we consider the success of education for citizens with disabilities the long term result is marginalization in multiple respects.
The sacred IEP team, which I support in theory, is a clear victim of socio-cultural bias. And what aggravates the outcome are high levels of consciousness. Special Education is a support and a service, not a place. When the evidenced is used over the bias children with disabilities will join their peers and have equal opportunities. The children without disabilities will also rise up as a diverse methodological classroom is good for all.