Last school year, we spent a lot of time asking a lot of questions. We asked questions such as:
1. What are people saying about NSE?
2. What do we want people to be saying about NSE?
3. What is a quality education?
4. What are our strengths?
5. What are our weaknesses?
6. What are our obstacles?
7. What are our threats?
From the information that we gathered, our school design team was able to develop the following shared beliefs:
...that our students come to us with individual experiences and ideas that form a foundation for learning.
...that our teachers design authentic and purposeful learning experiences for all of our students.
...that our school and community are committed to working together to maintain a mutually beneficial relationship.
What's the next step? In his book, Engaging Students, Phil Schlechty states that, "Once a faculty has settled on a statement of beliefs, especially a statement of what they believe about the role of teachers and students, the next step is to create a picture, image, or story line that indicates what the school would look like if these beliefs were acted on" (p. 59).
We would love to hear what you think our beliefs look like or would look like when they are acted upon.