This interview (link broken, so removed) with David Langford discusses how to improve education using ideas from Deming. Along with Alfie Kohn, David have long been the learning and management experts I find most valuable.
I have long remembered is his idea that he was the CEO of his classroom. On hearing Deming discuss how critical it was to have the CEO active in a management improvement effort to achieve success he tried to get those above him in the organization chart to change. Which didn’t work very well. Seeing that method was not successful he took a new look and decided to view the problem in a different way.
He looked for what he was in charge of and decided he could decide how to run his classroom. I think this is a very valuable idea for anyone looking to improve their organization. What is your sphere of control? Focus on how you can improve there. Don’t just try to change others. See how you can change and improve what you can.
The interview provides a good insight into the great ideas David has.
- “Make changes that let all kids get good grades.”
- That comes from the theory (incorrect theory) grades motivate students.
- There is no level of education sub-quality that is acceptable. Success or need to work more, which category are you in. B, C, D does not make sense.
- People keep trying things we have proven over and over again don’t work, like pay for performance schemes for individual teachers.
Anyone interested in improving education should listen to this interview and search out more ideas from David Langford and Alfie Kohn. I really like David’s capacity matrix.