Sunday, January 29, 2017

Setting the Culture Above the Line

I believe that the defining characteristics of a successful school focus on more than academics. With that said, however, academics is the meter in which the world judges us by. So, before I delve into the culture of a new school, understand this, how we perform academically is the single most important outcome. The system and focus for getting there are far more complicated.

In life and in school, students and teachers must understand that greatness is only achieved through intentional, purposeful actions. No matter what any person’s role is, they must have a clarity of purpose, a focus on leadership, and understand that behavior is the central driver for organizational success.

So, I ask, what drives your organization’s behavior? Ours is simple, it is a line. Yes, a line. And, we believe that everyone always has a choice. They can either choose to be above the line or below. And no matter where they choose, they must take responsibility for it.

As we get ready to take over a new school we have a VERY simple formula, choose to be above the line. First, let me acknowledge that I have different criteria for teachers from students.

For students, our line is focused on the acronym CES (Character, Effort, and Self-Control).

For teachers, the line is slightly different, their focus is on the acronym PRO (Passion, Relentless, and Ownership)

But both represent the behaviors we expect from our students or staff. Since it is our belief that behavior drives performance, we will work relentlessly at to improve students beyond their academic numbers. This focus is on culture or process, not results.

So, my question is to you, are you above the line?