Jack McManus has been involved in education at the high school and university level for the majority of his life since 1961. He is currently professor of education at Pepperdine University, where he has worked since 1979. After more than 50 years in education, Jack feels that he is finally "getting the hang of it" in teaching. If you want to learn research, you do research; if you want to learn public policy, you do public policy. Why is the obvious so hard to discover?
Changing the way schools operate is a necessary, but foreboding, task. The reality is this: schools are so large and so entrenched that it may not be possible to change them in any significant way. What to do? Tim Magner suggests a critical first step is for leaders to change the way they look at their schools and develop a new operational metaphor for each school or each set of district schools. The ideas, language, and implications of this new metaphor can serve as an inspiration for schools to be transformed. Possible metaphors for schools include: shopping mall, hospital, space ship and technology research center.