I have just returned from spending a few days in the South East, staying with my sister who is a teacher at an all girls prep school in the Thames valley. She and I, as we always do, spent lots of time talking about schools and education. She came out with a wonderful expression which I haven’t heard before and one which she uses with the team she works with at school. The expression is: ‘it’s good enough…’
This applies to the perfectionistic approach that dogs so many when this is not the ultimate answer. I think she is absolutely right. As I travel around schools, already I can see that teachers are tired. The ‘go home and work all weekend’ approach cannot be a sustainable answer. Doing things that are ‘good enough’ meaning you have the energy to keep on going and delivering a good product must be better than producing the ‘perfect’ work sheet and then collapsing. As I speak to staff about the importance of really delivering pastoral proactivity and connecting with pupils at a deeper level I often see brow battered people looking at me with a sense of ‘I can’t.’ I think, whilst we’re in this season where an academic focus remains, the ‘good enough’ approach should open up the door to more valuable time with pupils and greater attention to their needs.
So do hold this as a mantra that sometimes the ‘good enough’ approach leads to a more sustainable existence during term time.