At first, I left it to the school to go through the DVDs. But the director had gone to get her masters, and as far as I could tell, the PD training got pushed down the to-do list and dropped.
So, a couple months ago, I said enough. For any teachers receiving salaries from RohingyaFund.org, they must first go through the training. My requirement for training: each teacher email me after viewing each DVD. Pretend I’m a new teacher and you’re teaching me the principles from the DVD along with some instructions for implementing them.
I’ve received 2 emails from Teacher Z so far. Both are long, elaborate expositions that clearly demonstrate that Z not only watched the DVDs, but understood the gist of the PD program. I’m so relieved. Here are a couple samplings:
DVD#1: What I get from the video “five criteria for positive discipline” we must gain students cooperation rather that push them to do something that they do not want to do. Gain their respect to make it easy to teach them properly.
Everyone has they own comfort zone but if they want to improve they must move out from their comfort zone. But for our students it is not easy because they have limited choices and opportunities than regular students. It is quite difficult for us to handle this situation. But as a teacher we will not give up to make sure our students make better decisions in their life.
For disc two, Z noted:
DVD#2: The most important point in positive discipline is, we must know what we feel. Being able to tell others what we feel. … we must ask (our students) to tell us how they feel to lessen the burden in their heart before we can continue with the lesson.
In subsequent emails back and forth, it’s clear that Z is convinced by PD, and not just regurgitating back the talking points. I’m beyond gratified.
So, after two more emails from discs 3&4, RohingyaFund.org will be resuming paying a significant portion of Z’s salary.
I first encountered the PD program in 2010 when my son started kindergarten at The Village School in Los Gatos, California. This school was unique. Their number one goal wasn’t education, nor was it to hit specific metrics on standardized tests. No, their number one goal was to develop conflict resolution skills in the kids and the staff.
The cornerstone program for teaching conflict resolution: Positive Discipline. We parents read books and took a workshop. I even taught some of the techniques to the older kids in the school once a week.
We implemented many of the concepts at home. For example, we made a ‘house rules’ list that we wrote as a family. Everyone contributed. The rules included, “Don’t start with blame” and “don’t talk at someone from another room.” The kids came up with the second one. Buy-in is a powerful motivator in following the rules, and there’s no better way to get buy-in than to have participants write the rules!
And this morning I see the school was written up by CNN!