Can I just say what a smart move that was from Hinojosa! He stands up for 10 minutes, drops four big lines, then brings in the kid the teachers remember so highly to remind them about the old days. The conversations on campus transitioned right from reminiscing about Dalton Sherman to "the good old days", pre DOL;s and when PD was beneficial. I do not remember much about these before but the pulse after convocation was excited for potential changes. It was very clear from the "I will not be dancing" to the "some people like to beat up the teacher," that Hinojosa is attempting to distinguish himself from Miles.
So lets talk about the big four initiatives Hinojosa brought up.
1. Modify DOLs. Clear applause from teachers all around the auditorium. No clear direction on how they would be changed, but hinted at less regulation regarding DOLs. Honestly excited about this. A strong teacher will evaluate their students continuously throughout every lesson. The focus should be on what I am doing in my class, not the language I use in my DOL .
2. Doors can be closed at times. Honestly, I have no strong feelings about this one. My room is hotter than the boiler room so this will not affect me at all. However the bigger picture I got here is that teachers will not be on display as much this year. Teachers will have more flexibility in their classroom and not have to worry about putting on as much of a show for outsiders to walk past and see.
3. Visits on Wednesday. Similar to closed doors, Hinojosa mentioned he will visit campuses but will not be going in classrooms. Unlike the Miles days of 10 person classroom walkthroughs (which I fell victim to my first semester teaching ever), Hinojosa will visit schools for teachers to see him, not the other way around. I see a theme of building teacher respect through trusting what they are doing in their classrooms.
4. Lastly, but certainly not least. A week for thanksgiving. Que the teacher screams. Like others, I am all over this idea, even if it means getting less PD days during the school year. Give me my week!
Interesting day all together.