Thursday, May 21, 2015

Chapters Have Autonomy?

 Recently I was involved in a discussion of changes that might assist DKG in remaining relevant and sustainable. Rules and/or traditions that might limit chapters and state organizations also surfaced. After reflection and a brief discussion with a mentor and DKG sage, I wondered if perhaps we make assumptions that might not be true. Do we think we can't do something based on past practice, myths, or misunderstanding, or do we actually have restrictions that impede our progress?

 DKG chapters have only eight mandates.
  1. Members must be recommended, and elected at a chapter meeting based on identified qualifications, which includes initiation. Reserve status may only be granted for two reasons.
  2. Members must pay dues and fees on time.
  3. Chapters must have four regular meetings per year.
  4. Chapters must have an executive board with defined duties.
  5. Chapters must adhere to the Purposes and Mission Statement, and are responsible for Society work within whatever committee structure they choose.
  6. Chapters must have Rules that are consistent with the Constitution and its state organization bylaws.
  7. Chapters must elect and appoint certain officers who must be members and are elected in even-numbered years.
  8. Chapters must submit annual and biennial reports.
With the exception of number 1, which deals with membership, and number 6 which addresses the organization's governing documents, chapters appear to have much autonomy.

If additional flexibility is desired, a member, chapter, or state organization has the opportunity, every four years, to recommend changes to ensure continued relevance and sustainability. Is four years too long to make changes in the Constitution? Should it be more general? Should membership be changed?

Chapters are the heart of the Society and the members its lifeblood! It is crucial for each member, chapter and state organization to participate actively in determining the future of our great organization. This might make a great discussion for a chapter meeting.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Hello again Blogging!

 This past weekend I was reminded of  a statement, "Communication is too important not to use every strategy available."
Since leaving DKG Society Headquarters in Austin, I have not been without things to do. In addition to a little rennovating, mowing lawns, cleaning fence rows and flower beds, and pressure washing my house and driveway, I have resumed my local civic and community responsibilities. I have also texted,  tweeted, used facebook, instagram, pinterest and even the What app. But, alas, my blogging went by the wayside.

Although I understood, during the two years I served as international president, that not one person sat with bated breath waiting for my next blog, I faced each attempt as a noble effort to reach 84,000 women educators in 17 member countries!  My saying goodbye to blogging, while going unnoticed by others, presented an incongruency for me.

Those of you who know me realize that I extol the value of using all types of social media to increase the visibilty of DKG, engage the XYZ generations, connect with seasoned mentors (baby boomers), and advocate for desirable educational policy. Because of that and my desire to walk my talk, I am returning to blogging!

So, hello again blogging. It is good to be back!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

A Special Medallion!

Dr. Jensi Souders, Tennessee
Recipient, 2014 International
Achievement Award
Dr. Jensi Souders, Tennessee, received the International Achievement Award at the International Convention in Indianapolis, at the Celebration Luncheon on July 30, 2014.The gold medallion she received was first presented in 1953 to Eunah Temple Holden, Florida. She wore it until her death in 1975, and in 1987 it was then presented to Dr. Jessie Sim. Prior to Sim's death, the medallion was returned to Florida for safe keeping.  In May 2014, the medallion was sent to Society Headquarters to Dr. Beverly Helms, 2012-2014 international president. A new gold bar was added to the middle which now bears Dr. Souders' name.

Dr. Jensi Souders has served the Society for many years in numerous chapter, state,  and international leadership positions. She was the 2010-2012 International President, and served on the 2012-2014 Administrative Board as immediate past president, chair of the DKG Supporting Corporation, chair of Transition Planning for the nominee for international president, and chair of the Administrative Board's committee to review regional conferences. She also served as a member of the 2012-2014 performance appraisal team.

The Danger of Silence

Clint Smith, a teacher talks about the Danger of Silence.  Watch the four minute presentation.
What is the implication for DKG members with regard to our voice on educational issues and policies?


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Unique and Specific

Pat Smith, Delta Beta Chapter in Florida, shared her ideas for strengthening the Society.

"1. We as an organization have to offer something that no other organization can. Otherwise, we continue to be repetitive and redundant. In other words, we MUST be set apart and unique.

2. We need to meet the specific needs of our young members as they are our future. In order to do this, they will have to share their needs.
I never heard of Delta Kappa Gamma until 2 years before I retired. I came into the organization to find stimulating higher level conversation concerning important issues in education. In retirement, I thought that would be sorely lacking.
Instead, I found a sisterhood of wonderful individuals and new, strong friendships. Maybe that was what I needed more than a 'brain boost'."

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Does DKG have a Learning Disabilty?

Dr. Gwen Simmons, North Carolina, shared a couple of thoughts with me in response to my request for ideas for strengthening DKG. Below is one of them.

"Does DKG NOW have a learning disability?  Yes, I think it does.

Before the time of Peter M. Senge (1990) and Ronald A. Heifetz (1994), Dr. Blanton (1929) structured DKG to be a Learning Organization; that is, an organization where members are expected to participate in the activities of the Society; although DKG may not be transformed by a member’s participation but the member is transformed into a leader in her own right.

I have never minded what a colleague calls the “grunt work” of DKG because when I understood that any responsibility you assumed in DKG you would” learn on the job” and the DKG Organization would probably not be transformed by your grunt work , but you, as an adult learner, would continue to learn and hence, be transformed.

DKG, as educators often do, has an overall mentality that something must be produced that is tangible—when in reality what would really transform this organization is women thinking on their feet and being able to listen, disagree without taking disagreement to mean rejection and creating an “us against them mentality” (If you don’t think like me, there must be something wrong with you because there is certainly nothing wrong with me.)"

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Friend of Education Award

The DKG Friend  of Education Award
was presented to Indiana State Superintendent,
Glenda Ritz on July 30, 2014 in Indianapolis.

A DKG Friend of Education Award was presented at the DKG 2014 International Convention.

Glenda Ritz, Indiana’s State Superintendent of Public Instruction, received the Society’s Friend of Education Award. Ms. Ritz brings to her office extensive experience in the classroom as well as a commitment to Indiana students statewide. Her emphasis is on the importance of literacy and the necessity that all children be able to attend schools with equity in resources and the expectation of a high-quality education.