I spend a lot of time talking to educational leaders about mission and vision. Without a clear sense of what larger purpose you want your school to serve in the world, and an equally clear picture of what it takes to achieve that purpose, schools are, in a word, incoherent.
And let’s just say, incoherence abounds in education.
But I was thinking the other day that it’s not just about OUR sense of mission and our picture of how to get there. I wonder how many of us in education know what our students hold as their current mission in life and how they plan to achieve it.
I’m not talking about asking them what they want to be when they grow up.
I’m talking about what they want out of this class, this year, this school experience thing. And then helping them create a plan to get what they want.
I wouldn’t be shocked if many (if not most) kids answered that mission question with something along the lines of “I want to get an A” or “I want to graduate.”
But you’d hope that most kids would answer with “I want to learn more about this” or “I want to improve at this.” You’d hope their mission would be to answer some question that’s important to them.
Either way, their answers might just change the way you think of YOUR own mission and the vision you have to achieve it.