Over the weekend, I was wondering how long it would take for passengers on a sinking cruise ship to actually know that they were sinking. The modern cruise ship is a huge vessel. It sits stories above the water, and there can be hours or days that you forget that you are on the water. Taking on some water or a handful of minor incidents could probably go without notice for quite a long time.
The changing landscape of education seems to be parallel to this. The speed and acceleration of learning beyond the classroom is far outpacing the methods of learning in the average classroom. The needs of today's students far outstrip the resources that most schools are providing. The backlog of best practices and innovation that aren't taking place in most classrooms is growing. Quality statistics and data are continuing to show a system at its breaking point.
I wonder when we will notice as a system that we are on a sinking ship. Will it be when we lift our eyes from test results and begin to have more conversations about the new metrics that we need? Will it be when we listen to the voices of students and focus on learning more than teaching? Will it be when barriers to success empower solutions instead of elicit excuses? Will it be when we connect our classroom to partnerships and communities and move away from our narrow lens in our siloed space?
There is no way to mend the old ship, but together with deep conviction, we can chart a new course with a way to keep everyone afloat.