Saturday, August 9, 2014

Personal Professional Goals

At the beginning of each school year, I have to write a professional growth plan based on the goals of our school and school division. In addition to these goals, I also choose some personal professional goals to reach.

I had made a resolution at the beginning of the new year to maintain a Personal Learning Network (PLN) through Twitter. Prior to that point, I had done very little with Twitter or Personal Learning Networks, and I knew I really needed to. In the months to come, a whole new world of FREE professional development opportunities opened up to me. In fact, my personal professional goals for this year come directly from ideas generated through my PLN.

Goal 1: Maintain Regular "No Office" Days.
I am sincerely worried about the amount of change we are asking of our teachers this year. In addition to working with a new student database system which includes a new electronic grade book and method for posting assignments, we are also giving each one of their students a Chromebook. One evening, a member of #cmsk12chat mentioned the concept of "no office" days. Basically, select days to work outside the office. I'm hoping that in doing this, I will have a better idea of what is going on in classrooms. I'm hoping that by spending more times with teachers and students, I will be better equipped to accomplish my second goal.

Goal 2: Make Sure Those I Work With Experience Personalized Learning
As our school division implements so many new initiatives this year, there will be teachers who will embrace them and instantly thrive in their new teaching environment. Others will need some guidance to be more successful. There will also be a group who will struggle, who will need intensive support and coaching. Using "no office" days will allow me to gain a greater understanding of what our teachers need. I can then seek out resources to help provide them with professional development or coaching that fits their individual needs. I'm willing to bet I could pair them up with a PLN that would help them grow like I have. I know there will also be some tough conversations that will take place as a result of what I see, and that is why my final goal is so important.

Goal 3: Maintain Authenticity
One of my absolute favorite chats, #leadwithgiants, takes place on Monday nights at 7:00 p.m. They discuss trends in leadership. Back in June the topic was centered around authenticity. Being new to a building last year, I was afraid that I had lost some of who I was trying to fit in with the culture there. What I ended up realizing is that in order to best serve those I work alongside, I need to be true to myself.  I am at my most confident when I am true to myself. The teachers, students, and staff members I work along side deserve the very best from me, and I need to be at my best in order to give my best.

As you reflect on your upcoming year, be sure sure that the goals you set help your school and your division. However, make sure to set some goals which help grow yourself as well; because If you stop learning, those you work alongside aren't going to learn very much either. 

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