Ridiculously Amazing Schools by Tracey Smith & Jeff Waller
Creating a Culture Where Everyone Thrives
Imagine a school with a culture so positive that everyone thrives: students and educators alike. Classrooms are lively, students feel they’re part of a community that cares about them, and teachers are happy and productive. Too good to be true? Not in a ridiculously amazing school.
There are many of them all across the country. What are their secrets to success? In this book, principal Tracey Smith and Jeff Waller, co-author of The 7 Mindsets to Live Your Ultimate Life, show how taking care of educators first—and cultivating supportive relationships—results in profound and positive changes. Smith and Waller explore the five key elements of what they call courageous schools: schools that understand it takes a “whole” teacher to teach the “whole” child. They reveal the one variable that stands out as a predictor of sustained excellence…and it isn’t about leadership style, teaching practices, or demographics.
There’s no question that teaching is hard work with little instant gratification, and too many educators go to work each day feeling unappreciated and overburdened. But it shouldn’t—and doesn’t—have to be that way.
Smith and Waller offer practical solutions and a road map to drive real and meaningful change within the school and classroom. It’s possible to create a nurturing climate where teachers are respected and have the power to transform lives…not just their students’ lives, but their own.
Tracey Smith works as a principal with Forsyth County Schools in Cumming, Georgia. Her passion for reaching and teaching the whole child led to a friendship with the 7 Mindsets in 2012, when she oversaw the development of an elementary curriculum to address the growing need of social-emotional learning. She is fiercely determined to create environments for teachers and students that change their lives and make every day ridiculously amazing.
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