I have just found out what I consider to be a horrible, horrible fact: my school has had a clear, concise, articulate, student-centred, made for our student demographic, well-researched and easy to implement IL policy sitting on the shelf for THREE YEARS, untaught.
Because the three schools (elementary, middle and high) cannot decide if they’d all like to implement it.
So that is 3 full years of no one being explicitly taught basically any IL using consistent language or process, even though there has been a fantastic policy devised by an incredibly competent and knowledgeable team of educators across all three schools sitting there, waiting. All because of damn politics between administrators, our kids have been left with a piecemeal approach to IL with some kids being taught their teachers’ version of it and others having no idea whatsoever.
Grr, double grr.
My TL also says that a major hurdle is staff buy-in. They have to see the value of explicitly teaching IL, and teaching it using a common model. He believes this can only happen with a top down approach – the principals, curriculum coordinators, team leaders and TLs must all agree on the model/approach and only THEN can we as a school go ahead and teach it. Otherwise, it will always be seen as a temporary approach, or worse – a temporary educational fad, something that doesn’t have to be bought into because it will pass soon enough.
Based on some forum posts, it seems having solid research to back you up as a TL will help you get other staff to ‘buy in’ to using a consistent model.
Regardless of what politics are behind the decision to implement or no to implement, I truly believe our kids cannot and will not internalise and transfer these skills and processes across subjects and into real life unless we can provide a clear and consistent model (or scaffold) right from the start of primary school and moving through to high school.