Collaboration & compromise through courageous conversations
For those that know me are familiar with my practice of leading with curiosity. I believe that we don't know what we don't know. We're seeing and understanding the world through our own lens and we make assumptions based off our own life experiences. At the center of all this are our core beliefs. These are beliefs we hold about ourselves, others, and the world. Our core beliefs are typically formed in childhood by observing those around us, messages we receive from others, and through impactful life experiences. It influences our decisions and how we navigate our life. Why is this important to know? Because the School Board makes decisions that impact a whole community and if decisions are being made without curiosity, then those decisions are being made from a personal belief system. School Board members are elected officials. The community elects those who are going to make decisions on their behalf with the understanding that the decisions made will be in their best interest. As we know, this doesn’t always happen. Too many times we see elected officials make decisions that are contrary to what the people they serve want. This is unacceptable.
A lot of VULNERABILITY is needed to serve in this position. Board members need to have humility, flexibility, and be able to compromise. They need to set aside their own biases, beliefs, and agendas. Board members need to understand what the community wants and needs by having courageous conversations and leading with curiosity. There might be times when the majority is advocating for something that goes against a personal belief, but pride needs to be set aside to show the community that they're being listened to and their opinions are respected.
We need to be connecting with teachers, support staff, and admin on a regular basis. We need to ask for their feedback and ideas as they're the experts in their field. We need to listen openly to understand what is being asked and why.
We need to ask why Farmington parents open enrolled their child(ren) in other districts. Is there something we could be doing as a district to encourage you to return?
We need to understand why teachers are quitting a career they love so passionately. Is there a common theme and how can we best support them?
We need to bridge cultures to build compassion and empathy. We need to understand how beliefs were formed and what can be agreed upon?
We need to raise the voices of those who are often silenced, minimized, and dismissed because their voice matters just as much, if not more, than the majority.
We need to bring our defenses down, listen to understand, and work towards compromise.
We need to be having open and curious conversations to create authentic relationships and belonging.