Atlanta, GEORGIA (TWP)
At Peter Washington Elementary, Principal George Dotson wants to change the school philosophy so that it is a good one instead of a bad one. His plan includes having all teachers read the book Working School Wonders: A Philosophy That Works and use it as a basis for a good philosophy and throw out their bad philosophy.
“Times are changing,” Dotson said. “We have to change with them, throw out the bad and incorporate the new and get down to the business of teaching these kids with the best tools we have, not the bad ones.”
In recent years, Peter Washington Elementary has seen its state standardized test scores fall, and it may one day be put on a plan of improvement if they do not improve. But Dotson said that test scores were not his driving concern.
“We need to see some good behavior and discipline from these kids. We are failing at correcting their bad behavior and bad manners, but we are supposed to be educating the whole child, and we can’t do that with our old bad philosophy. That’s why we need the new good one,” said Dotson.
“Reading a book is not going to change the demographics of this school population,” librarian Candace Underwood said. “Nor is taking on some different philosophy going to change the outdated schedule, the lack of planning or thinking time that both teachers and students have, and the inadequate technology.”
“Good is good, and bad is bad,” said Dotson, “And we need to make sure we stick with the good, even if that means changing our philosophy so that we are truly getting rid of the bad in order to make room for the good.”
When asked about the particular philosophy of the book, written by Remington Strump, Dotson replied, “It’s about initiative and self-reliance, and without those two good qualities, things can only be bad.”
Strump, Dotson’s brother-in-law, could not be reached for comment, as he was on a book tour in Australia.