We often hear the word "champion" used in a variety of phrases and settings throughout life. We are currently in the midst of professional basketball teams competing their way to the NBA Championship. In professional baseball, the winners of the MLB World Series are crowned as the World Champions. In sports, the champion stands alone or with a team, as the victor. The dominance of championing something, makes a statement. A statement of endurance and perseverance. The long hall of training, being defeated at times, then getting back up and staying the course.
The world outside of the sports realm frequently uses the word to describe rising above last years sales quotas or acquiring a new company and doubling profits. However, one of my favorite ways to define and use the word champion, is that of an ardent defender or supporter of a cause or another person: a champion of the homeless, as defined by http://www.thefreedictionary.com. The non-profit sector of the world, frequently uses the term in this way.
So where does public education fall in line with our societies use of this word? Can a teacher champion the classroom or a curriculum? Can an administrator champion their school's discipline issues? Can a district office leader champion a high quality and free education for every single student? The answer to all of these questions is, yes... but why do it alone?
One person can be a champion, but those of us who work in public education aren't in sales or participating in a professional sport. We don't make anything per-say... except by, transforming the minds of tomorrow, today.
So get with others who share your views and unwavering beliefs about the incredible minds of students. Let them in and work together. Try. Fail. Get back up... and Champion public education.