We Cannot Defend the Indefensible, So What Can We Do?

Choosing to believe test scores are unfair does not protect us from the consequences they create, the most notable of which is a pervasive loss of faith in community public schools. That these are the only schools to which children of color, who are poor, or who must learn to speak English can be assured access only heightens the risk to those communities  and their children, and to our democratic society.

Now, with the aggressive expansion of “school choice” on which some states are investing hundreds of millions of dollar, coupled with the recent Supreme Court ruling on affirmative action, our nation’s most vulnerable children are even more vulnerable.

We must find another way to educate our children. We must rally around a new model by taking positive action with all the passion we feel when we see our democracy at risk. And we must implement the changes in our community public schools, as turning them into successful learning laboratories is the only way to save them.

The Hawkins Model© is an innovative approach to teaching and learning that I have developed. It was inspired by ten years of walking in the shoes of public-school teachers as a substitute; by a lifetime of working and volunteering with kids in multiple settings; by thirty years in organizations responsible for operations and hiring; and as an independent organizational and leadership development consultant. In all of those roles my forte was developing innovative solutions to production and service-delivery processes—of which an education process is a version—that routinely produced unacceptable outcomes.

My approach involved stepping outside the boundaries of conventional thinking and employing a problem-solving methodology to understand why a process (education, production or service-delivery) is unable to produce the outcomes we seek. Once one gains an understanding of the flaws that lead to unacceptable outcomes in a process, we are able to go back to their drawing board to reimagine and redesign a process to produce the outcomes we seek and that our customers demand. This is what I have done with the dysfunctional education process at work in virtually all of our nation’s schools.

Please understand that teachers and administrators are victims of the inefficacy of our education process as are their students. Teachers are not to blame and are, in fact, the glue that holds it all together. All of the good things that happen to students in our schools are result of the commitment and dedication of teachers despite the impediments inherent in an education process that has grown obsolete.

The Hawkins Model©:

·         changes the way we organize teachers, students, and classrooms.

·         While it must still teach to academic standards, we alter the priority given to the schedules embedded in those standards and shift that priority to learning.

·         It makes forging relationships with each student our teachers’first priority because the relationships between teachers and their students are, far-and-away, the most essential variable in the education equation.

·         changes time from a fixed asset and constraint to a variable asset available to students and teachers in whatever quantities they require.

·         it requires teachers to assess the level of academic preparedness and emotional development of students when they arrive at our door at ages five, six, and seven so we can commence their academic journey at the cusp of their knowledge and their level of emotional maturity.

·         utilizes what teachers learn from those assessments to tailor an academic plan that addresses the unique requirements of each student.

·         It then encourages teachers to develop and practice their craft and authorizes them to differentiate in response to the unique needs of their students.

·         The model alters the way we keep score based on the belief that learning is the only thing that counts and that should be counted, and it refuses to accept less than the best students can do. Accepting less than a student’s best is what the existing education process does each time it calls a halt to a lesson, asks teachers to record Cs, Ds, and Fs next to the names of students who are then pushed forward to new lessons without the prerequisite knowledge the preceding lessons were intended to impart. This diminishes the probability of a student’s success with each succeeding lesson.

·         And, the model provides a learning laboratory  in which success and innovation become the expectations of the model rather than exceptions that must be carved out of pedagogic traditions.

The end product is a truly transformational education process in which we discover that success in learning is a powerful motivational force that propels students from one success to the next on a unique academic journey in which they are encouraged to take increasing levels of ownership over their dreams and aspirations.

Please take the time to check out my model by clicking on the link at the top of this page for the first 20 pages of my book, The Hawkins Model©: Education Reimagined, One Success at a Time, which is where I encourage you to begin. Afterwards, check out my bio that explains why I feel qualified to offer this new education model and then Chapter Six of my book, which is the actual step-by-step implementation plan of my education model.

All you risk by examining my model is a little bit of your time for an opportunity to transform education for each child and teacher in the U.S. If you like what you read, I invite you to read the manuscript of my yet-to-be-published book and provide me with both a pre-publication review and letters of support that will help me find a literary agent and publisher. My model is free to any publicly funded or faith-based school willing to put the model to the test in a struggling elementary school. The only revenue I hope to generate from it will be the royalties from my book, once published.

Please let me answer your questions and address the doubts that are doing their best to hold you back and, remember that anything human beings can imagine human beings can do.


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