Thursday, April 9, 2015


At a workshop for school division leaders,
the facilitators
With planned redundancy,
they emphasize that
strategies known to enhance instruction
must be the very same ones
that drive school division
practices, meetings, sessions.

They themselves walk the talk.
Participants converse,
give feedback,
within a flexible structure.
Technology funnels questions
and respects privacy;
charts list demonstrated strategies
for application in the local context;
every voice can be heard that risks expression,
thanks to embedded opportunities and techniques.

For the last activity bridging to lunch on the final day,
we are lined up, one hundred strong, along three sides of the room,
having voted with our feet in answer to
“Where would you rather be?”
Our chosen spot has sealed our destiny for the next hour.

Anchored rock solid in the present,
I head for a spot in the room’s front right corner.
Here, I acknowledge the three men on my right with whom
a penchant for the moment? 
discomfort with change?
has partnered me for a reading and synthesis task.

One of them, a fortyish fellow on the end,
avoids eye contact.
Article and notebook in the right hand,
left hand in his pants pocket,
he floats away from our foursome,
like an untethered canoe on undulating water.
Nonchalant as the groups form, 
he rides the waves
into the crowd and a more
amenable? comfortable? known?
We, the rejected three,
let the elephant be,
find a space to work,
introduce ourselves,
reshape the task for our failed quartet.

All the while,  I percolate.
I want so much to believe 
a positive presupposition that
a student in similar shoes,
matched with workmates in that same teacher’s class,
and, like him,  seeking a more
amenable? comfortable? known?
would be allowed to slip unchallenged under the radar,
hooked up with friends rather than classmates,
no matter the ramifications for others.

But, from deepest recesses of my being,
a word surges, defying suppression.
It pulsates in bright neon behind my eyes:
Not.  Not.  Not.

No comments:

Post a Comment