In the midst of changes that are occurring on a global scale in education, career and technical education is in the middle of its own transition from the way we think about teaching and learning pre-Covid 19 to post-Covid 19. As Career and Technical educators, we will be on the forefront of that transformation to meet the needs of our students and to reflect the industry changes that we see our industry partners making. The changes in education may push against the status quo, but that does not mean that there will not be support along the way. The biggest mistake that we can make in implementing change, is to go the course alone.
When we try to accomplish difficult tasks, there is a tendency to not meet our highest potential then if we ask for the help that we need along the way (Brown, 2012). This is the same for our educational leaders who are looking to one another for support during this challenging time. We as a nation of career and technical educators need to come together to meet the needs of our students and programs to ensure we are making smart and strategic decisions.
The educational leaders across the country have a dilemma that they face when looking at the start of the next school year, and that is what will schooling look like for students from preschool to high school and beyond? Many of the leaders in education as well as Career and Technical Education are at a cross roads with preserving the traditions of school and providing an equitable education that fosters engaging teaching and learning. Winston Churchill once said “In every age there comes a time when a leader must come forward to meet the needs of the hour. Therefore there is no potential leader who does not have an opportunity to make a positive difference in society.” Now is the time for our leaders to make those decisions that will have a positive influence on Career and Technical Education across the country.
To go the course alone and not to consult trusted advisors would be a foolish decision, because collaborative teams can help a leader flush out unforeseen circumstances to build a solid solution to a complex problem. To have an effective team, it is important to have a variety of individuals on that team to provide support in ways that a leader may not (Maxwell, 2008). There may be a team member who is detail orientated and can foresee the small details that a big picture person may miss. Great leaders should create teams in which people push each other and the status quo to ensure the decisions that are being made are in the best interest of students.
Now is not the time to go rouge and for leaders to make decisions without consulting trusted advisors. It is only lonely at the top if you don’t bring a team along the way (Maxwell, 2008). Don’t feel like you have to know every answer to all the questions. People are there and willing to provide support when you need it. All you have to do is ask.
Brown, B. (2012). Daring greatly: How the courage to be vulnerable transforms the way we live, love, parent and lead. Gotham Books
Maxwell, J. (2008). The Leadership Handbook: 26 critical lessons every leader needs. Nelson Books.