Hedreich Nichols

BTS Edition: Losses, Gatekeeping and Selfcare

Queen Elizabeth, 9/11 and Mourning

As I thought about the pomp and circumstance surrounding the death of the Queen, the national remembrance of 9/11 and how we, as a country, grieve, it occurred to me that our losses are ranked. And those rankings reinforce our caste system, our gatekeeping. Why, for example, are flags lowered for government officials and foreign dignitaries? Are those losses more profound than the losses suffered by “regular” citizens?

If we accept grief rankings, where else might we be reinforcing structures that do not honor and value people equitably? How do those systems and structures subtly influence the way we approach building classroom and campus culture?

What Is Normal Anyway?

What kinds of inherent structures of honor are in place on your campus? Who do “norms” honor and center? Are there “norms” that can be rethought? Let these questions guide your reflections this week. And to support you in being a reflective practitioner, listen to Angela Watson of the 40 Hour Teacher Workweek Club in her powerful interview with Jennifer Gonzales. Being rested, balanced and regulated is THE best thing you can do to propagate a positive, supportive campus culture. Setting strong work-life boundaries is key.

Finally, if you feel grief over the loss of the Queen, at the thought of 9/11 or at any other world impacting event; be true to your feelings. We feel what we feel, and that’s ok. If others feel those losses less acutely, that’s ok too.  Reflection and acceptance are perfectly balanced, leaving no room for judgment. 

Happy Back to School, see you next week with more SmallBites.