Once upon a time, many HISD principals (that I knew personally) took to heart the recommendations in a
wonderful book called "If You Don't Feed The Teachers, They'll Eat The Students" (look it up on Amazon --
I think you can still order copies of it)... and some of those same principals (and others) also tried very hard
to learn from a book titled "Shaping School Culture" (another great book)... Both books focus on the power o
f supportive & facilitative leadership that builds a positive, caring, and nurturing school culture -- a culture
that is nurturing for the students AND the adults...
Such a shame that those lessons are now lost in the current toxic culture of HISD...
I personally know one principal who is often named on this site as being a bad principal -- this principal is
one of the ones that I know who embraced the philosophy of both books mentioned above. I believe this
principal is still a very good and decent person who truly cares about creating a positive, supporting, and
nurturing school culture (for all stakeholders), but I firmly believe that the toxic culture created at the distric
t leadership level has affected this principal's ability to implement what they know is best for school culture
and teacher/student success.
I think it is very important for everyone who contributes to these comments and everyone who reads this site to
keep that in mind. The atmosphere/culture is very influenced by the leadership, and it is hard even for the best
school leaders to do what they know is best in the current district culture. Many of the people you name on this
website (and I know some of them personally) are very decent, well-meaning people who do care about students
(as more than just test scores), their families, and the faculty & staff of their schools. In too many cases, though,
their hands are tied.
I used to work in this district (many years of service) and I am still very proud of the work that I did at my campus
and for the short time that I worked at the district level. However, I left shortly after Grier came on board because
I did my homework and knew where things were headed. I was fortunate that I could leave -- I did have other options
and possessed the ability to leave when I did. Unfortunately, many of my colleagues -- some who are named on this site
-- were unable to leave for a variety of reasons and now they are stuck trying to survive in this mess.
This is a very dark time for this district and I hope for the sake of our entire area that positive change can be made
soon. It is imperative that we have a strong, successful, and thriving public school system that serves the needs of all
of the students in our area.
by OptOut (May 23, 2012)