Broken Sprinklers

I get a strange feeling that our new home is going to be providing me with education metaphors for a while.

Discovered a broken sprinkler head in our yard this evening and noticed something. As that broken head was gushing a fountain of water, all of the other sprinkler heads in that particular system were spitting out very little water. I probably could have predicted that would happen based on the flow pattern of the water through the system, but I had an education-related epiphany:

Schools are like sprinkler systems. When each individual sprinkler head is in its prime working condition, the whole system works like a charm. But if one part leaks a little bit, or (heaven forbid) if a head breaks completely off, the rest of the system loses its effectiveness as well.

I think the metaphor just emphasizes the importance of having quality teachers who work hard to make sure every student has the opportunity to learn every day, but also the importance of everyone else that is a part of the system – classified staff, building administrators, district administrators, custodial staff, etc.

In thinking about that, I can’t help but think of our amazing attendance secretary, who constantly had to remind me to submit my attendance – if I didn’t have a leaky head and got my attendance in to her on time, the sprinkler system would probably be a little more effective.

It’s such a rewarding experience to stand back and watch a sprinkler system function beautifully…especially after working on it for over an hour.


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