It's an interview with Peggy Petrilli conducted by Women of Web 2.0, an internet webcast apparently from February this year, after Peggy's resignation. At least the tag reads, "Submitted by cheryloakes50 on Thu, 2008-02-07 11:36." Look for the audio controls at the top of the page. 66 minutes, Peggy starts about 10 minutes in.
The moderator tells a brief story of how she encountered a man named Chris Derry in an airport and struck up a conversation.
Vicki Davis: I was on the way to Maine with Cheryl and in the airport, oh golly, I 'm not sure what airport it was...reading Wikinomics, and a fellow named Chris Derry came up to me, and we started talking about education, and test scores, and how we need to include technology as a part of education, and the difficulty of dealing with education today. And we just had a great conversation. Chris pointed out, and said, you know what, hearing about your show, that we really needed to have Peggy Petrilli on.
... Peggy has experienced a lot of the great success stories and also the challenges of ...turning around schools... Peggy why don't you introduce yourself...
Peggy Petrilli: Great. Thank you, Vicki. I'm Peggy Petrilli and I'm so excited to be a part of this tonight. I've been in education for over 20 years and I've been a principal since 2000. I'm taking this year off now because I'm finishing up my dissertation, so maybe I'll be a Ph D then hopefully by May. And then I'm interested in getting
My area of interest has always been in low-performing inner-city schools because... we know what to do. We know best practices. And there's a lot of questions about test scores and testing. Are we doing too much testing? Are we focused too much on it?
And I think I have to say, 'No we're not, because we need to be held accountable for what we do.' But by the same token, we have to make learning come alive....
If I had to describe my ...strength, it would be working with teachers in low-performing schools and then putting in place the professional development, the collaboration, and teamwork and the excitement to make a difference working with kids.
Instructionally...we also have hands-on learning. ...Especially for students who come to school with very few experiences, kids have to have experiences with content in order to really comprehend and grasp it. And that may mean physical models in math, in science and social studies it means a lab setting...and that would mean multiple labs for each content piece.
And then exit slips that kids can get a quick little response to, and then you do an action plan or corrective teaching immediately, so you don't wait a week or two. And then using spreadsheets to keep... track of kids...it's just a real easy way for teachers to see - Oh look, I've got three kids who didn't get this... So let's pull... And Sharon you may have two, and ...Vicki one. So ... we can pull the kids together tomorrow morning and do a quick little reteach.
And we made a 67% gain on the state assessment in just two years at the school I was most recently at....
Professional development using content coaches.
The importance of teachers
Focus on test scores
And this ditty...
Davis: Chris says you can't be a principal who does great things unless you're willing to lose your job.
Petrilli: Well, I think that, yes, yes, yes, that's exactly right. You have to so believe in what you're doing that you're willing to lose your job over it. Yes, and I can tell you it's not easy in this day and age. It's not. Not to be an innovative, progressive leader that brings the best of everything to the kids. ...There's a certain amount of
resentment. The status quo - it's risky business. I've become more and more - that's probably why I had to take this year off to finish my dissertation and kinda rethink this because I love charter schools. And I know we shouldn't talk about politics, but you know, the freedom to have some autonomy with what you're doing...