Friday, August 19, 2011

What has been missing from my educational leadership coursework

Being in the middle of two different grad programs simultaneously has been making me a little nuts, but last night something rather incredible happened.

I had comprehensive exams for the educational leadership certificate. We had to prepare a position paper on a controversial topic, and I chose school libraries materials challenges. Frankly, I wanted a little soapbox to talk about libraries, because they hadn't come up at all in the coursework. Not even one sideways mention of school libraries. If I had a nickel for every mention of coaches, or even yearbook sponsors, I'd be heading to Starbucks, but not one little utterance, from professors or practitioners, about the librarian and the media center. And, otherwise, the curriculum has seemed both pragmatic and exhaustive. So I wrote about materials selection policies and the importance of school libraries as laboratories for intellectual freedom and the wisdom of following an objection procedure to mitigate your chances of appearing in Censorship Watch.

In an intersting pedagogical twist, we had to describe and defend each other's papers. Anyway, after we completed the exam portion, the director of the program, who happens to be one of those indefatiguable educators, in his 70s but still energetic and incredibly thoughtful, said, as he wished us well, "I realize now we have two holes in the curriculum, libraries and counseling. We should cover those."


Now I have a two-week internship, a week each in two elementary schools in my district, then the Praxis next month...and then I can focus entirely on getting my dissertation proposal together for my other grad program...


  1. Congrats. It's great to see teachers seeking out educational opportunities. Our profession needs more lifelong learners.

    Where are you doing your EDL work? I'm in UAB's EDL program and will be finishing up next semester. I've noticed a lack of library/media and technology in general, and it's extremely disheartening. We've had discussions on building professional learning communities and not once mentioned building communities Online. I wonder if some of the problems in our current K-12 climate stem from the lack of preparation that teachers and leaders receive from universities and the quality of the standards to which ED students are held.

  2. Derrick, it's through Samford. We did have a whole "technology" course, but there isn't a lot of cogniscience of online prof dev opportunities on the whole. But I am glad that are reconsidering the curriculum, it's really been a good experience.