This case study is offered as a discussion starter. The incident happened. The names are changed, but the facts are straight from the principal’s mouth. How did it end? I’m holding that, for now. How should it end? What reasons would you offer for that decision? Discuss this case with colleagues in leadership.
Keith worked in a small town with a small school. The applicants for the open second-grade teaching position had been few; the best of the group, though, were two women: one a “local yokel” and the other from half-way across the country. The interviews were done; so was the lengthy discussion about which one ought to be offered the contract. Now the board president turned to Keith, the principal: “OK, Keith, which one do you think we should hire?”
“Abraham will surely become a great and powerful nation, and all nations on earth will be blessed through him” (Genesis 8:18). There’s that verse again. Our call, as God’s people in education, is to be a blessing to the world.
In Most Likely to Succeed: Preparing Our Kids for the Innovation Era by Tony Wagner and Ted Dintersmith, the authors write, “We will explore the contradictions between what students must do to earn a high school or college degree versus what makes them most likely to succeed in the world of work, citizenship, and lifelong learning. We’ll show what can and must be done to transform education for the twenty-first century and provide examples of best practices in high schools and colleges around the country. And we’ll emphasize the urgency of affecting change.” In other words, the authors present their vision for how educators can be a blessing to the world, albeit from a different motivation. Still, it is worth it to ask ourselves, “For what world are we preparing our students?”