Introduce the Clip: Superintendents are responsible for the performance of their districts, schools, and principals. Both West Hartsville Elementary and Thornwell School of the Arts are in Superintendent Edward Ingram’s district. Both Dr. Ingram and his two principals demonstrate a high level of purposefulness. They understand what they are doing and why, and the value of the intended outcomes.
In this clip, we see Dr. Ingram in a meeting with the principals in his district. The date is September 6, 2013, the start of the school year. He explains that often schools focus on the middle group of students because that’s often where the biggest bump in academic growth occurs. In an interview he also explains that he’s not necessarily concerned with the performance of a nearby school district. “We need to set our bar along the line of what are the best practices in America and the world.”
• How would you respond to his question about performance: “How does a high performing school district get better?”
• Dr. Ingram says that it is necessary to “work with the floor and ceiling simultaneously” in order to sustain permanent growth in academic knowledge. What does this mean and why would that be true?
• When Dr. Ingram visits schools, he asks younger children, “What time do you go to bed? What time do you get up?” Why are children’s answers to these questions important?
• What makes Superintendent Edward Ingram a motivational leader?
• Can you recall other scenes in the film in which he acts as a cheerleader to motivate or give credit to others?
Think about action steps that principals or organizational leaders can take on their own or through motivating staff to build children’s confidence and academic knowledge. How can your school and community leverage 180 Days: Hartsville’s media assets to address or give visibility to this effort?