Be an agent of change. Work tirelessly to improve your profession, your practice, your student's learning - yourself. It is difficult to cast aside what we know and work towards trying what we don't. It's the price of reform that also comes with a disclaimer that advertises "personal and professional benefits to all who self-reflect and self-improve."
Teaching is a dynamic profession. It requires people that are invested in equipping our youth with ideas, skills and the necessities of life. All too often, we can get bogged down by the policy and procedures without truly understanding the impact we can exert on our students. Students need direction; but they will only follow those directions that get them to where they want to be. If your practice is outdated; if your methods are outmoded; if your ambition has been outsourced - get out.
The world is changing. We are watching it unfold and become a reality. Our students will grow up in a system and society that has re-defined itself on the merits of technology (for better or worse). Our schools are a microcosm of society. If they are crying out for new ideas and new directions through escalating negative behaviours and poor attendance patterns - listen up. The students have things to offer us teachers that have not been printed on the School Improvement Plan or planned for on the Board Course of Study. They have needs and wants that are emerging as their day progresses, often in response to what they are being subjected to in our classrooms.
Just as we can often conceptualize our ideal version of something based on the negative experiences we have had, our students are envisioning a classroom that is the alternate reality of what they're used to. We deliver that vision, and we will deliver them into an effective 21st century education.