In 1989 my mentor, and future business partner, Dr. Randall Olson, introduced me to the work of William Glasser. Dr. Glasser was the author of several books including Choice Theory, The Quality School, and The Choice Theory Manager. These books, more than any of dozens I have read on coaching, leadership, and management have shaped how we work with educators when we have the privilege to partner with schools and districts.
In the Quality School Dr. Glasser describes why teaching is one of the most difficult jobs in the world. He compares teachers to doctors. Although doctors have a difficult job, their patients are cooperative. This is not always the case with a classroom of students. The doctor will no longer treat those patients who are not cooperative, whereas the teacher is still responsible for the learning of the uncooperative students.
Our organization, TESS, recognizes how hard the work is to be a good teacher. With that in mind, our work with teachers is predicated on conditions we have adapted from Dr. Glasser to demonstrate our respect for the difficulty of the work and for the individuals doing the work:
We must always be supportive.
We must always respect the teachers’ time by only asking them to perform tasks that add value to their practice.
We must ask everyone with whom we work to put forth sincere effort to allow us to give valid feedback.
We must provide a system that allows individuals and their colleagues to more accurately evaluate their own work.
We must demonstrate that the work they do with us will result in increases in student learning.
We strive to make these conditions manifest in every aspect of our work with schools. Whether we are training, working collaboratively designing lessons, facilitating teacher reflections on classroom practices, or simply brainstorming. Our job is help make everyone else’s job a little easier.
I look forward to making your job a little easier too.
-Gene Tavernetti, Ed.D.
Founder of TESS Consulting Group
Interested? Contact us for more information!