Monday, June 15, 2015

21 days to Internet virality - I think.

Our principal is trying to raise the school’s profile and encourages the staff and students to tweet positive things about the school.  She said, “I’m hoping some of these go viral.”  I see many problems with that statement, one of which is that unless something is very unusual, interesting or relates to a ton of people, not many things “go viral.”  Most of the things that "go viral" related to schools aren't the kind of news about a school that administrators want to spread.  

It hasn’t stopped people from trying, though it should. 

Remember how I wrote about our PD last week, and how it would take a minimum of three weeks of documentation to get a behavior specialist to help you?  After we finished all of our training for the day, the staff split to go to several different sessions of our own choosing.  Following those sessions, we were supposed to meet with our grade level teams before going home.  As I am a trustworthy employee who is considered part of “special teams” (meaning they don’t know where to put me because I teach multiple grade levels and different elective classes), I dutifully finished my session, graded some papers, made copies for the next day’s lesson and left two hours early.  I was gratified to see several other teachers sneaking out as well.  It was neat how we all walked casually and kept looking over our shoulders, like we “just had to get something out of the car.”

Later that evening, as I complained to everyone around me about the waste of my day, I decided to check my social media.  I checked Facebook, Instagram and then Twitter.  Three tweets popped up from Ms. Hicks, another English teacher:

Behavioral RTI training- make for better students #4kids

Behavior intervention apps to guide classroom management... #happykids #4kids

21 days to better behavior #happykids #4kids

Apparently, this was her take on our training with the behavioral specialists, who are supposed to help us manage kids that are unmanageable.  The "apps" they suggested were checklists that had to be completed in order for them to come assist the teacher with the student. 

I could have SWORN that the behavior interventionists said it would take 3-6 weeks of documentation before you could even ask them for help, not 3 weeks until the behavior improves.  She must have gone to a VERY different training.  It sounded more fun than mine.  Apparently, all this intervention training makes kids happy and excellent.  Who knew?

But maybe we also have different outlooks on life.  I suppose I tend to be a glass-is-half-empty-type person, while she is a massive-suckup-type person.

I'm sure the biggest question you're dying to ask now is "did the tweets go viral?!!"  If your definition of viral is having the principal favorite all the tweets, then mission accomplished.  Did it counteract the fact that the cops showed up at the school the next day?

I guess not, but remember it's "21 days to better behavior," not a "better public image."  That takes at least 22 days.