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Friday, November 4, 2022


I recently read Culturize: Every Student. Every Day. Whatever It Takes by Jimmy Casas (2017).

JS speaks to strategies that school leaders can enact to positively impact student learning outcomes, along numerous dimensions. He focuses a great deal of the book on concrete moves leaders can make.

My biggest takeaways:

·       A conversation is not just words flying – it’s body language, smiles, eyes, pacing and pausing…

·       Definition of Culturize: To cultivate a community of learners by behaving in a kind, caring, honest, and compassionate manner in order to challenge and inspire each member of the school community to become more than they ever thought possible.

·       Fairness necessarily means treating others differently.

·       Providing clarity lowers anxiety.

·       Power and rightness are not the same thing.

·       Tricky conversations are best had in person.

·       There is no excuse for not contacting the parent of a failing student.

·       Leaders own their morale.

·       Awfulizing is the habit of verbally bashing others, circumstances, decisions. 

·       Awfulizing = unwelcoming, rude, critical, provoking, cruel. 

·       Awesomizing = inviting, civility, accepting, deterring, compassionate.

·       Great change begins with self-change.

My favorite quotes:

“To often, however, we get stuck in the habit of simply managing a mediocre culture.” (p. 9)

“Your culture of your organization will be defined by the worst behavior you are willing to tolerate.” – Todd Whitaker & Steve Gruenert (School Culture Rewired). (p. 97)

A very nice read in relation to leadership moves dedicated to improving organizational culture. 

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