Teacher-based rooms or not – this topic will be explored at the all faculty conference (including Preschool, Elementary School and grades 5-12 teachers) on June 20th, 2016. In order to support a constructive discussion within our school community, I would like to share some background information as well as a brief juxtaposition of the facts we have to consider.
During the last inspection by German officials (Bund-Länder-Inspektion) the teachers of grades 5 through 12 expressed their wish for classrooms that are teacher based. This wish was restated at the all faculty meeting in September 2015. In my role as the Head of School, it is my responsibility to channel this wish through the established decision-making process and to ensure that the decision, whatever it might be, will be implemented.
First, the room capacity had to be verified and indeed the DSW has enough classrooms in order to implement a teacher based room concept. After that, I informed the Board of Directors, the Parents Council and the Student Council about the teachers’ wish. In the middle of May, in the conference of the teachers of grades 5 through 12 (Dienstberatung), the topic was on the agenda and a very well written and detailed statement of our Student Council was discussed. The majority of the faculty was in favor of a test-run for one year. Whether or not this proposal will be implemented or not can only be decided at the all faculty conference (Gesamtkonferenz) , because that is the highest level of decision-making authority when it comes to pedagogical and organizational school issues. As it is common practice at our all faculty meetings, representatives of the Student Council, of the Parent Council and of the Board of Directors are invited. The three groups will have an opportunity during the conference to state their opinions regarding this important topic before the vote takes place.
My personal opinion on this topic is not being considered because I would have to be on one or the other side of the issue, and that would influence the process by which I am guiding others to form their opinions. There are reasons for and against the teacher-based rooms as you can see in the following summary of the discussion at the conference of teachers of grades 5 through 12.
Pros of teacher-based rooms
Cons of teacher-based rooms
„Homeless“ Students / „classroom identity“: - There could be a shelf in the teacher-based rooms where students can leave their materials that they don’t need all the time. This will allow for more space in their lockers.
- We will need to create new areas for students to spend their time in short breaks, Freistunden or before classes begin in the morning:
Room 2 as a room for grades 10 through 12 (with sofas), library as quiet study area, flexible option to remain in the Assembly Hall.
Thank you for your interest and best regards,
Petra Palenzatis, OStD‘
Head of School