And then it was over. No big fanfare. No bells. No whistles. No fireworks. No welcoming committee. Just a weary traveler 180 days farther down a road without end, coming to a quiet rest, so he may reflect and recharge for that which still lies ahead. And as he looks back on the road last traveled, he remembers the times when he was lost, alone, and far from home, asking himself, “What the hell am I doing?” But he remembers, too, the times when the path was clear and others were present, and he wondered, “Am I changing the world?” But that is all behind, now only food for thought, as he replenishes his stores, preparing for the next turn, where he will walk in circles without knowing, for the landscape changes with each cycle, a mirage of promise, ever luring him around the bend. And so, here he is, come to rest 180 degrees from where he began, upside down, inside out, a turtle on a perpetual path, tipping and turning, trying to find his feet, so he can find his way.
Not entirely sure what I expected with this latest half turn, but in the end I did learn. And I will take what I have learned and use it to make even better the gradeless experience for my kids next year. And while things are still coming together on what that will look like exactly, one thing is clear: I will never go back to traditional grading. What’s more, I will use I what I have learned–and seek to continue learning–to convince others that we can do differently, that we can do better. We have a choice, and if we have the courage, we can change the world. I believe that. I really believe that.
Signing off for the summer. Will post on occasion. Thank you all for your support over the past several months. Could not have done it without you. Thank you for believing in me.