Friday, February 28, 2014

Our life is frittered away by detail. Simplify, simplify, simplify! I say, let your affairs be as two or three, and not a hundred or a thousand; instead of a million count half a dozen, and keep your accounts on your thumb-nail. (Henry David Thoreau)

Among other things the last two weeks have been consumed by a subject report on last year's results and plans for 2014.

So far it's weighing in at 28 pages. It seems extreme. On the extremo continuum I'd put this at one end. Our neighbouring girls' school apparently doesn't require Heads of Departments to write a report at all. Clearly this is at t'other end of the extremo continuum.

I try hard not to do the 'when I was a Principal' bit but I recall being asked about what I wanted my Heads of Departments to report on when I was a Principal at Stratford High School and my response was basically twofold - ONE = where are the gaps in performance and whatcha gunna do bout it? and TWO = where are the strengths in performance and how yer gunna build on it?

So strengths and weaknesses basically.

Less is more!

I'm a big believer in occam's razor - the principle that you should go straight to simpler theories so that simplicity gives you a deeper understanding. 

Twenty eight pages and counting is not simplicity.

[Side bar - couldn't a done my 28 pages without the stellar support of my English Department colleagues and fellow HODder and regular reader - Toni Dunstan - you rock Toni!!]

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