Time to Focus on the 4 Kinds of Smart.


I think we may be at a turning point for public education, but what do I know (please don’t answer… or send me insulting/truthful emails).There May Be More, But This Picture Indicates There Are Only Four Types of Smart.

In ten years, the world of education may be overtaken by home schooling, charter schools, and online learning (this interweb thing really seems to be catching on).

This makes me a little sad because I’m a big fan of public education (almost as big of fan as I am of chocolate).

But it’s all I know.

Maybe there is a better way.

Maybe our students can be better served by another type of system.

Maybe, just maybe, a system that relied less on government funding could better educate our children.

I don’t want to sound crazy, but schools might be better off if they didn’t have to answer to politicians (a crazy thought I know, but I’m just throwing it out there).

Here’s what I do know.

Public schools try to be everything to everybody.

We teach.  We serve breakfast.  We make sure kids know how to drive.

We offer exercise (if you count PE).  We put a whole lot of students on the Honor Roll. 

We teach kids how to type (why… I don’t know).

We provide sports and after school activities. 

We provide things we can’t afford and spend money in ways that may not be fiscally responsible.

To summarize, we try and do so much that we probably set ourselves up for failure.

My latest theory is we need to downsize.

Focus in on what students actually need.

Focus on things our country could actually benefit from since our students will be the ones leading us in 20 years.

I see 4 types of smart in students.

Academic.  Athletic.  Vocational.  The Arts.

Not 100% of all kids fall into one of these categories, but 99% of them do.

Common sense tells me we should identify what a student is good at and then help them be great.

Yet, we sort of identify what a kid is good at then we try to make them the same level of good in the other areas.

Mediocrity seems to be our goal.

Academic kids should be thrown in rigorous programs at a very young age.

Athletic kids should be given the opportunity to maximize their skills.

Vocational students should learn the skills they need to keep this country growing.

Students who thrive in the Arts should be allowed to do just that.

I think it’s simple.

And I think we make it complicated.

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I Am Glad My Daughter Was Born After Title IX.


The Evil Spawn and millions of other young ladies are very lucky to have Title IX.

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You Are Weirding Me Out.


This happens more and more often.Weird.  Really weird.

Okay.  From time to time.

Alright.  It happened once.

I was standing by myself.  Minding my own business.

I was attempting to avoid any interaction with society.

As usual, I was avoiding any and all forms of human contact.

And then it happened.

Someone mentioned a blog I’d written.

Like I’ve actually read them.

It’s weird.

Kind of like the feeling you get if you accidently put on someone else’s underwear (awkward!)

Or instead of using toothpaste, you accidently grab a tube of Preparation H.

Or sharing a bathroom (think about it… it’s unnatural).

Or like when you go outside to get the mail only to realize you’ve forgotten pants (these examples are hypothetical… as far as you know).

It’s not right.

When I post a blog, I believe I have every right to think no one ever reads them.

I am pretty sure this is in the Constitution (note to self… Google Constitution/Blogs).

I don’t want to seem ungrateful, so it’s important you know I don’t really mind being asked about this blog.

But you have to understand something…

I don’t read what I’ve written

Never have.  Never will.

So when questioned, I could give a thoughtful answer about how I had carefully considered and researched the issue about which I had written. But that would be a lie.

Truth is, I probably slopped something down (like I am doing right now) and never gave it a second thought.

Or sadly, a first thought.

So if you have questions, fire away.

But I can’t promise I have any idea what you are talking about.

Because I barely have any idea what I was talking about.

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Life in a Sentence.


The Evil Spawn did something wrong.It's Always Someone Else's Fault.

I point it out, nicely and politely (it’s my story… so I was very nice and very polite).

She says "It’s your fault."

I said "But you did it."

She responds "I know.  It’s just no fun blaming yourself."

And that my friends sums up society as we know it.

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Youth Sports Spelled Backward is Stressful.


Or maybe it’s stropshtuoy.Stress Makes Me Old.  Older.

No matter how it’s spelled, it’s way more stressful than I ever imagined.

I coached for a long time.

Some people would say way too long (by some… I mean all).

As a school administrator, I’ve had to throw my share of over-zealous parents out of games for griping at the referees and coaches.

Or both (and honestly, if you’re about to be tossed out of a gymnasium in front of your peers you might as well yell at everyone).

My assumption was these people were insane.

Who gets so caught up in a child’s game that they have to be removed by a mild-manner kind-hearted person like me?

I was wrong.  We are all insane.

At least when it comes to watching our kids.

It’s in our genes (in my first draft I spelled this "jeans" which is actually funnier).

It’s easy to lose perspective when your child loses.  Or fails.  Or doesn’t get to play.

I’ve known for a long time that The Evil Spawn’s childhood would not go smoothly.

I anticipated visits from the local police.  Long chats with the District Attorney.

Neck tattoos.  Numerous piercings.  Fake IDs.  Boyfriends 35 years older than her.

I knew there would be late night car chases.  Liquor store robberies.  And various other crimes that I hoped would always be misdemeanors.

After all, what kind of father would I be if my only daughter was committing felonies?

What I didn’t count on was the pain and suffering of watching her grow up and being effected by the decisions of other adults (not in law enforcement).

Coaches.  Umpires.

Evil, evil people.

No one told me at the hospital when she was hatched, how challenging this time of her life could be.

I had no idea the pain and suffering one has to go through while sitting in a lawn chair watching her attempt to hit a softball (by the way… there is NO WAY that first pitch was a strike!!!).

Life is bound to get simplier when she is 16.  Or 17.  Or 18.

It will won’t it?

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Student Outsmarting Me. Just Another Day.


School Administrator magazine.Life is Always 50/50.

The June 2012 edition.

Look for me.  And a student on the back page.

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NASSP Principal Leadership Magazine: My School Tested for a TV Pilot.


Another month.My First TV Was Way Older Than This One.

Another magazine.

Another article.

To summarize:  I’m very grateful.

It’s been a fun year for me reading about me in such a great publication.

Thank you NASSP.  And thank you to everyone at Principal Leadership Magazine.

Just to update my literally ones of fans.  We haven’t heard if we are getting the tv show.  I’m assuming no news is… a big fat no.

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Nicest Email Ever.


This is the nicest email anyone has ever sent me.  And keep in mind, I get a lot of emails.Just Kidding.  It Might Not Be Worse.

"Teachers complaining about me to the superintendent. Had to find something to take my mind off to a better place. Thank you for the blogs!

Principal A."

First, since when do teachers complain about principals?

Second, never mind.

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Disclaimer

While this site operates with the knowledge and awareness of the Tuscola CUSD #301 School Board, Tuscola, Illinois, the content and opinions posted here may or may not represent their views personally or collectively, nor does it attempt to represent the official viewpoint of Tuscola CUSD #301 administrators or employees.