Same Place, Different View

1212_14 Binoculars_text-01 (2)Have you ever noticed how people can be in the same place, looking at the same scene, but have very different viewpoints? No I’m not referring to the recent election.

Recently, my family and I took a trip to an historic city. It was quite the adventure — picture a family vacation with grandparents. We were all excited to explore this unfamiliar city and discover new food, museums, shops and culture. At one point, five of us were looking out over a scenic vista of trees, mountains, river and blue sky. At least that’s what I thought we were seeing.

My daughter was watching the ships and commented on how slowly the barges were moving up the river. My son was watching people stroll on the river walk far below. My wife and her mother were discussing the gorgeous geography of the city’s location. I was focusing on a cluster of trees on the crest of a hill across the river. We were all standing in the same place, yet noticing very different parts of the whole — taking in the same view from different perspectives.

I suspect what we see depends on our own personal tastes and preferences.

Now, imagine taking a trip with a small group through your local schools. Perhaps a couple of teachers, a student or two, a school administrator and a few parents are along for the tour. As the guide, aka district leader, where would you take your tour group? What do you think they’d notice about the schools from their different vantage points? Would they comment on class size, the quality of school facilities, test scores, the curriculum or perhaps the students and staff they observe? Do you think they’d all notice the same thing? As a school leader and educator, what catches your eye as you look out over the scene of your school system?

One way to ensure that you are aware of the many-varied perspectives is to have a team of knowledgeable people who know your district’s school communities and can answer specific questions. That is where having an experienced partner with expertise gathering many views is important. K12 Insight is a valued partner for hundreds of school districts across the country. We can help you study your school district’s landscape, frame conversations with stakeholders and bring different viewpoints into focus.

So, where would you like to take your staff, parents, students and community members sightseeing in your school district? Let K12 Insight be your docent on your next sightseeing trip so you get views from all of your stakeholders.

Author: Stephan Knobloch

Sr. VP of Research and Advisory Services

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