Saturday, March 28, 2015

The Systems Thinker's Prayer

O Holy Spirit Paraclete of Life please grant me the wisdom and profound knowledge to better serve the benefit of ALL as opposed to oneself.

 Once I was asked what is the difference between wisdom and knowledge. In my understanding I see knowledge as being an expert in a particular subject area were wisdom can only be gained over time that is developed through many trials, tribulations, exultations and experiences of life.

I dedicate this to the teachings of Dr. W, Edwards Deming - 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Educational Leaders Operate in a "Command and Control" Environment

I am totally convinced the majority of educational systems in the Untied States operate in a Command and Control environment.

The problem lays in the fact that people in positions of authority think they are Leading (They are Commanding). However, they operate in a short-term vacuum that expects immediate results from non-systemic thinking. They think they are Managing (They are Controlling).

So what does that mean? It means many educational leaders do not understand how to run an organization (School. District) from an end-to-end-process philosophy.

So what does that mean? They have no concept of "By What Method?" It's about just doing rather than thinking and planning for the long-term based on factual data and talking to customers and employees (Parents, Students, Teachers/Staff). It's about as a leader stop thinking you know what caused the problem from your office and get your butt out in the classrooms and teacher lounges and parent committee meetings and stop tampering with what might be a stable system (Stable does not necessarily mean good).

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

School Count Day = The Demise of the American Educational System

School districts across Michigan are gearing up for Count Day on Wednesday, when students in seats equal dollars for the year. Click on the following link to read the staggering statistics.


 Here we go again!

The pictures re so cute - I'm all for bringing gifts and animals to schools too - I just can't see the relevance of doing it on Count Day other than the fact to get more money from the State. Why can't the State just do count day randomly so we can get an accurate count and spend our tax dollars wisely.


In 2010, many districts enticed students with a total of $20,000 in Target gift cards, a shot to win laptops, iPods, or 42-inch flat screen TV.

In 2011, every Detroit public high school student who shows up to school on Oct. 3 will be rewarded with a free pair of Nikes, courtesy of a local shoe store.
This year Detroit public schools is giving away notebook computers on Wednesday to lure more students to class on the day attendance affects state funding for the district. The district declined to release which schools will receive the computers on Wednesday. Distribution will continue weekly through October until about 19,000 students received the Netbooks.

Am I the only one who finds this practice to be a total sham? Dollars from our tax dollars should not be given based on a few count days a year to determine how much each school district receives per pupil.

Come to school for a few days and get a PC Notebook. Oh it will be stated that the notebooks will help with learning and homework and… BS!

If this does not prove that the American Education System is in total disarray I don’t know what will. You want results – look at these tactics.

Bribe kids to go to high school – yep, and then bribe them to go to college – yep, then …

Yep, I know where to go to buy a slightly used “cheap” PC Notebook in about a month.

Tennis great John McEnroe said it best ...

Sunday, February 01, 2015

High School & College Mentor Program - Updated 1/22/15 - Video Presentation

Updated 1/22/15 - Presentation on the CDMP Process

As part of an all school (K-12) meeting with over 1000 people in attendance the CDMP Program was presented.

I would like to share with you a "unique" Mentoring Program that benefits students from 8th - 12th Grades.

If you are a high school student check out the College Info Link.

If you are a parent check out all the links.

If you are an educator or administrator check out the contact!

How did the Dream Mentor Begin?
The Dream Mentor program is a program that provided each student from eighth grade to twelve grades the opportunity to meet with a Dream Mentor to provide academic and occupational exploration prospects both inside and outside of the classroom.

What is the Purpose of the Dream Mentor Program?
The word “Dreams” provides a sense of comfort and confidentiality that is required when one is confiding trust and passion to another in hope reality can be achieved. The aim of the program will be to:

1. Fostering academic (thinking) development
2. Preparing students to be informed, caring, and productive citizens of society
3. Preparing students for higher education
4. Preparing students for the world of work.

What are the Goals and Objectives of the Dream Mentor Program?
· Help students find the joy in learning
· Provide students with academic and occupational exploration prospects both inside and
outside of the classroom.
· Assist students in discovering their abilities, talents and passions
· Aid students in creating short and long term educational plans
· Create a Dream Roadmap with student that follows the student from year to year based
on the student’s interests and goals.
· The roadmap will assist the student by identifying what he or she wants to accomplish
while in high school and in the future.
· The goal will be to meet with student at least three times a year
· Better chance of student going on to higher education
· Facilitate students with transition from grade to grade

What is the Process for the Dream Mentor Program?

Go To

Friday, January 02, 2015

Shine in Line

Over the Holiday's I was inquiring with some relatives about two boys I worked with nine years ago who are now in 11th grade. The boys are both Autistic and I think of them often. Each was given a different path. One is still taking part in regular high school while the other has gone to different schools and removed from regular Mainstream.

I have always believed that a solid parent foundation is critical as an integral part to a child's education. The child still in high school has parents who have always fought for his rights and understood the law when it came to battling with school district special services who tried to circumvent the rules because of funding.

The other boy who no longer is being mainstreamed had a rough family foundation where the mother relied on the so-called school system experts to guide her to what was best for her son. I tried to intervene as a lone wolf when school education leaders wanted to remove him from being mainstreamed. I would have stayed with the boy as long as possible to make sure he was given a proper education and guidance as to what the law stated but I was overruled. I later left the school district because of those decisions. Perhaps it was meant to be based on what I have done since then but I would give it all back if I knew I could have truly helped.

I was throwing away some old papers today when I came across this poem I wrote nine years ago...

At 11:45 we start to get antsy while he smiles like an old gray fox
At noon we go to our lockers and get our Sponge Bob lunch box
He then checks our shoelaces and pulls up our socks.

Then it’s back to class and get called in to line
We shuffle to the back because he said that’s where we shine
He walks with us quietly and whispers all will be fine.

As we walk quietly in line headed to the lunchroom we go
We then search for a place at a table where a friend might show
While the man who is with us sits across the room laying low.

Often times we don’t eat and we just play with our food
Then the lunch lady turns and signal to the man that we are being crude
He then stands where we can see; and gives us the “Look” we best eat before he gets in a mood.

After we eat we go to recess, sometimes it’s in, but we hope it’s out
It all depends if the flags are green hanging about
Yellow means stay inside then we groan and pout.
Today we go outside and play on the playground equipment
We hope a friend will stop and play even if for a minute
But most of the time we play alone and it seems to be infinite.

At 12:35 the whistle blows loud and sometimes we cover our ears
You see the decibel and noise level brings out some fears
But we know we are safe because our guardian is always near.

Another lunch has come and another has gone by
Sometimes we get into trouble and sometimes we cry
But mostly we wonder about friends and ask him WHY?

After we line up we will try not to talk and to stay in line
Then our teacher meets us and says you all look fine
And the man who walks behind smiles and says we shine!