The reason I applied for a teaching position at Napavine was because of the perceived reputation throughout the greater community. Napavine students have had significant academic success according to the Office of Superintendent’s reports. In addition, Napavine’s athletic program has also enjoyed a positive results in both boys and girls sports. The schools from which I came was much larger, had a very diverse and difficult population. I was exhausted and I longed for a teaching experience at a school with such a positive reputation. However, when I was offered the job and I talked with my principal about accepting the job offer, he just told me to be careful and do my research. At the time, I thought he was being coy because he didn’t say anything else. In retrospect, I wish I had taken his advice.
I began teaching at Napavine amidst several new hires. One, a previous teacher turned dean of students, who is now the principal, and the other a new superintendent. Unbeknownst to me, the dean of students was not readily accepted by all staff. In fact, the other English teacher in the building was one of Jason’s biggest detractors. Not only were some staff members unhappy with Jason as their boss, but they had been through two principals in three years. Prior to that, they had enjoyed a long term father-like principal. It was a co...
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... At the beginning of each year we should come together and discuss the direction we see ourselves and our students going. In addition, we could also remind ourselves of our roles, responsibilities, traditions and values. An excellent and organized use of time would be to spend a few hours during the first required district day revisiting our cultural expectations. Jason has expressed that he is not a “touchy-feely” type of principal. In fact, he calls it TFC (touchy, feely, crap). This could be delegated to another staff member or even multiple staff members. This would still allow Jason to continue his custodial culture approach, but also allow others to gradually experiment with a more humanistic approach. Working within the confines of the custodial culture, we can certainly evaluate our own perceptions and decide if we are still heading in the right direction.
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