Engagement in School
"Engagement that Improves Academic Performance"
"You Raised Me Up" - by Josh Groban
Societal Problems That Have
an Academic Solution
Research reports and every day observations agree that we find ourselves in a time where it is exceedingly challenging for employers to find qualified employees. Two noteworthy reports, one from The Economist in 2008 and another from Gallop in 2013, reveal gaps in interpersonal skills development.
There is an academic solution, one that creates an academic culture where most students are highly engaged in their academic experiences. The solution is simple, but challenging. To change the culture, every faculty and staff member must be intentional and persistent about their engagement with students. The key words are: "everyone, intentional and persistent."
Changing the culture is a moment-by-moment discipline of building trust and rapport. Engaging messages of hope, encouragement, empowerment and inspiration lead to mutual trust and rapport necessary for students to enthusiastically participate in their preparation for their own lives.
Teachers and administrators know that every class has both early adopters and late adopters of the academic goals and processes. Some students "get it" right away and engage with gusto. They know why they are in school, have a vision for their future and value the subjects and the learning process. Others, perhaps the majority, are less enthusiastic and less engaged at first. They coast along, unintentional about their education and satisfied with almost any grade that squeezes by for a diploma. Some of these eventually buy in and raise their engagement level. Finally, there are a few in every school who don't know why they are there and find creative ways to get in everyone else's way. Even this group has the potential to do more and become more. A fully-engaged student body depends on the commitment of engagement eminating from the faculty and staff.
7 Reasons Schools Should "Engage in Engagement?"
In the education profession it's easy for some to get wrapped up in mechanics and subject matter and shortchange the relationship aspect of teaching. The keyword that corrects is "personalization". This would include the necessary flexibility based on learning styles. However, engagement that changes the culture is more than that. It requires building strong relationships with every student. Here are seven reasons for educators to master the art of engagement:
It strengthens relationships by building trust.
It inspires confidence by building hope.
It facilitates life-changing attitude adjustments.
It inspires students and helps them act more dilligently in their own self-interest.
It completes the learning process.
It teaches faculty, staff and students the art and skill of engagement. Without it, they can't reach their potential.
It starts a ripple effect that equips every stakeholder to be part of the solution.
Your Mission of Engagement
If this philosophy makes sense to you, then let's work together to change the culture. Whether it's school, the workplace or the family, we need people to be more engageed AND engaged with a purpose.