What school reformers can learn from Pope Francis

Pope Francis (Andrew Medichini / AP)
Pope Francis (Andrew Medichini / AP)

Veteran teacher Larry Ferlazzo has found what he says are school reform and classroom management lessons from Pope Francis. Ferlazzo teaches English and Social Studies at Luther Burbank High School in Sacramento, CA., has written five books on education, writes a teacher advice blog for Education Week Teacher, and has his own popular resource-sharing blog.

By Larry Ferlazzo

There’s a phenomenal article about Pope Francis in  The New Yorker magazine (and it isn’t behind a paywall!) — titled Who Am I to Judge? A radical Pope’s first year, by James Carroll. 

Here’s a key passage that “school reformers” — and all of us — can learn from about creating change:

pope 1

 

I’d add the quality of “listening” to “invitation and welcome,” but, nevertheless, I think the passage does provide an effective guide to creating change.

I’d say most of what I see from “school reformers” can be more accurately described as “my way or the highway” dictates and arrogance….

Here’s another quote from the Pope that appeared in the same New Yorker article. I think it can also serve as a good guideline for effective classroom management:


Valerie Strauss covers education and runs The Answer Sheet blog.
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Valerie Strauss | December 29, 2013