Loss. Love. And Legacy.

John Spencer is one of my first, and lasting PLN colleagues. I read his words carefully, and it was he who over the weekend told of the sad news about Joe Bower. Otherwise, I may not have known, because over the years I’ve pruned my PLN down, and now I realize too far: growing this network again to sustain and provide professional oxygen must be my personal mandate.

During my own journey, sometimes I didn’t understand what Joe was trying to say, or understand how powerful his words are. Perhaps that is one of the cardinal tenets of educator reflection: if you feel uncomfortable, look closer. Stay mindful. I went to read his words again, and now seeing his intentions with clearer eyes, and how he was a guardian and paladin for children is even more profound.

Anyway, if you’re ever conflicted about grading, and wonder how to get the best work out of students, read Joe’s words. Sustaining and loving.

Diane Ravitch, professor of education at New York University: “He was one of those educators that you wish were in charge of an entire state or nation. He was kind, caring, compassionate, and loved children.”

Many of us should be heard, be counted: continue the good fight.

2 thoughts on “Loss. Love. And Legacy.

  1. I never met Joe personally, but I read his blog for years. he has shaped many of my views of what learning and schooling should be like for children. He’ll be deeply missed. I appreciate what Diane Ravitch said about Joe. If only the same will be said about me one day…


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