Authentic Alternatives to Accountability and Standardization
Edited By Joe Bower and Paul L. Thomas
Chapter Thirteen: Leadership Denied: Principal as Compliance Officer
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Principal as Compliance Officer
ARNOLD DODGE, RUTH POWERS SILVERBERG, AND KATIE ZAHEDI
The Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD), probably the largest educator/practitioner professional association, convened its third symposium on the “whole child” in 2015, deepening its commitment to its 2007 initiative intended to move the education narrative away from narrowly defined academic achievement (http://www.ascd.org/whole-child.aspx). The whole child platform presents arguments for promoting healthy lifestyles, learning environments that are physically and emotionally safe, connections between schools and the broader community, access to personalized learning, and provision of experiences for college and employment/participation in the global environment. In short, the premise of the whole child initiative is to promote the social/emotional well-being of students through an approach that is both life-affirming for the individual child and relevant in larger contexts. The current gateway to educational leadership including a new set of State certification tests and the School Building Leader (SBL) assessment requires a new thinking which we argue is not helpful toward the promotion of “whole child” learning.
Schools that view children as more than the sum of their parts, seeing learners as developing entities (and not easily measurable at any given stage of development) are not encouraged under the leadership being shaped by new fragmented conceptions of education.
In fact, understanding that children are multifaceted and multitalented—i.e., a “gestalt” view of education—is...
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