I am proud to announce that the Union Leader has endorsed my campaign for school board, saying I’m part of a “handful of great candidates.”
In Ward 6, Jon DiPietro wants to open up the school district to reform. He says lots of people have new ideas, but the challenge is “to find the second person to join in to give permission to the crowd to embrace change.” He points to success at Parker-Varney Elementary School as a model to replicate across the Queen City.
– New Hampshire Union Leader, October 25. 2017
So, what did I mean about finding “the second person to join in to give permission to the crowd to change?”
The key to lasting change isn’t getting the first person to try something “crazy.” In the U.S. in particular, there are plenty of innovators and change agents willing and able to try new approaches. But if real change is going to take hold, others need to join in.
Take a look at the following video in which a dance party breaks out. At first, it’s a lone guy performing a strange dance by himself. Eventually, a second person joins him. The first dancer welcomes him and incorporates him into the dance. This is critical because it gives social permission for others to join in. Other concert-goers trickle in until a tipping point is reached. The tipping point happens when so many others are dancing that there is more social pressure to remain sitting than to join into the dancing.
We need to reach this tipping point in Manchester School District. At the moment, we’ve got a couple of “crazies” dancing. We need a few more to join them if we want to see a dance party of innovation so that real change takes hold. I’ve been leading change in non-profit organizations for years, earning multiple leadership awards. I’m not a great dancer but I do know how to get dance parties started!
Here’s one final video for inspiration. It’s Steve Jobs narrating an Apple commercial that never aired. In the final version, Richard Dreyfus was the narrator.
This post is dedicated to the crazy ones who want to embrace change in education.