"John, where do you see yourself?"
It's not a "where do you see yourself in 5 years"-type of interview question, but something to get me thinking about what stamp I want to leave on this profession by the time I'm done with it. I can't tell you if I want to be a principal, a superintendant, a consultant, an instructional coach, or a classroom teacher because I really don't know. One constant must be to stay rooted in the ideals of a classroom teacher. What I can say, to answer the question as honestly as possible, is this:
On the day I retire, I see myself looking back on my years in education and noticing the direct impact I had on changing the way that kids learn on a national, hopefully systemic level.
This is tough because it's bold and incredibly vague, yet it's the truth. I've always said that I'll never become an administrator and most certainly never ever ever a superintendant. Yes, I understand the naivity of such pigeon-holed sentiments; that's how opposed I've been to taking that leap. However, I'm realizing more and more that a teacher's voice can only reach a certain volume. There is a certain point where those who have something to say need a bigger microphone, a bigger audience, and a bigger platform to stand on.
If I'm going to help change education for more than just a minute portion of math and technology-based teachers, perhaps it's time to start looking for that microphone, that audience, and that platform, all while staying in the district that has taken me in as family. I'm committed to looking back on my career and, by the time I'm done, being proud of how our generation of professionals have influenced what we know as formal education.