Participants: Shelley Quinn (Host), Randy J. Siebold
Series Code: IAA
Program Code: IAA000427
00:01 Best selling business author Jim Collins says that
00:04 good is the enemy of great and that's the chief reason
00:08 why we have so little that becomes great.
00:11 Please stay tuned today. We are going to be
00:13 talking about how to reform our schools and take them
00:17 from being good schools to great schools.
00:45 Hi, I'm Shelley Quinn, and welcome to
00:47 Issues and Answers. We are so glad that
00:49 you are joining us. No matter where you're
00:50 tuning in from around the world.
00:52 And this is actually a kind of a final program.
00:56 We've invited a final program for Randall Siebold
00:59 for this series anyway. We've invited
01:02 Dr. Randall Siebold, Ph.D, Education and someone
01:07 who is truly, you are out to achieve reform and take
01:13 it back to biblical principles in our school systems.
01:16 Amen, absolutely, that's the call. I think that's
01:19 what God has called us to and I think we ought to
01:21 keep progressing forward so.
01:23 Well, I'm glad that he is kind of got you as one of the
01:26 chief forerunners here to say, let's get back
01:29 to what it should be. But I guess we could say
01:33 the chiefest of forerunners would have been
01:36 E.G. White, who wrote the book education and this is
01:39 something, less kind of people haven't seen
01:41 anything before of your series.
01:44 Randy, let's just talk about who you are and what
01:48 we've been talking about? You were a contractor,
01:55 a building contractor, I couldn't figure that word
01:56 out, you were a contractor who became very
02:00 interested in education. You got your doctoral degree.
02:07 Did your dissertation actually and what we're going
02:08 to be talking about today, this is going to be
02:11 pretty exciting stuff I believe.
02:12 This is your passion obviously, and
02:16 you have been, you did your doctoral studies
02:19 in public school. You have been, were a professor
02:23 at University at a Christian University.
02:26 You have been a principal for a Christian
02:30 Junior High School, and now you are
02:33 the, tell me what you are?
02:35 Vice-President of Education for Weimar Center
02:38 for Health and Education. And that's in Weimar,
02:41 California. Weimar, California.
02:42 Northern California. I am now a California guy, I guess.
02:45 And actually you're covering quite, tell us the great range
02:48 that you're covering in your, Well, we have elementary
02:51 school, a secondary school, and a small college
02:54 on campus and so we have all of those great ranges
02:57 in our schools on campus.
02:59 And that must be fascinating.
03:00 It's wonderful. Randy, we've been talking
03:03 about the problem with the school system that was
03:07 set up during an information, excuse me, set up
03:10 during an industrial age and now isn't really
03:14 fitting the information age. But we've also been talking
03:19 about other than just learning styles and
03:23 what is good that E. G. White wrote in
03:27 the book Education, that there are three basic
03:29 principles that we need to make sure that Christian
03:32 education has. No.1, it needs to be holistic, training the
03:35 whole person. No.2, that it should be life long
03:39 education. We don't just go to school for 12 years
03:42 and quit. But No.3, is that education should be,
03:48 the goal of education is to make us service oriented
03:51 rather than self-oriented. Is that?
03:53 Umm, absolutely, and what I like to do is
03:55 tag on to a comma. You said just just a bit ago this
03:59 idea of moving into the information age.
04:00 Yes. Now this is, this is very crucial
04:03 I think for any Christian. And that is
04:07 as we look around and my familiarity is with
04:12 education in the United States.
04:14 Yes. And here's what I'll say
04:15 I am absolutely convinced. Education, public education
04:20 will go through radical changes in the next
04:24 few upcoming years, and I'll tell you why I think
04:27 that's inevitable. School change and school
04:33 reform has been talked about for long times
04:36 since as we've covered in previous, you know, the
04:38 committee of ten set this standardized
04:41 curriculum and we've by enlarge been following
04:44 that pretty regularly, that was set up
04:47 with an industrial age mindset and meeting
04:50 the needs of an industrial age. We've people from all
04:54 walks of life critiquing the system the way
04:57 we do it and saying we have to change and
05:01 there has been people before saying that.
05:03 There has been this renewed commitment to reform
05:07 making changes and now we are at the dawn of a new age.
05:12 Okay. While the industrial age
05:15 was going on, school change was very difficult
05:17 to make happen because they still had the
05:19 same needs. And so they couldn't find that gear
05:25 to really turn education and make it happen
05:27 differently, but now we are clearly in the
05:31 information age. I received an email
05:32 recently that informs me of that interesting, just in case
05:35 I wasn't aware. We are in the information age,
05:39 so now with all of these information or knowledge
05:44 workers needed. Yes.
05:46 That we need a new type of system that is not me
05:50 arguing it. This is arguing it from the perspective
05:53 of a public educator. We must change the way
05:57 that we are doing things.
05:59 And here's where it becomes really crucial
06:00 for a Christian. If we don't make changes now
06:04 based on what God wants us to do.
06:08 What will we then do?
06:09 We will probably end up, whatever, whatever, being
06:11 force fed, yes, just like that we've intended.
06:14 Yeah, and then if public schools change, we will
06:18 change to be like the public schools.
06:19 Alright, since we've mentioned committee
06:22 of ten a couple of times, this was a back
06:25 in the 18 or 1800.
06:28 1890s. 1890s, okay.
06:30 And it was ten people from educational institutions
06:33 the chief men of the, colleges and prestigious
06:38 high schools came together. Their high schools were
06:42 teaching all from manual labor to the classics
06:46 to content oriented to memory only, just
06:49 all kinds of different things.
06:50 And the colleges were interested in getting some
06:53 standardized approach to what was happening out of
06:55 high school and interestingly enough,
06:59 take a guess at how long they said high school
07:02 should last? How many years?
07:04 I have no idea. Four years.
07:06 Oh! Really, so that's where
07:09 I mean nothing is changed at this point.
07:11 And take a guess at how long they said
07:14 elementary school should last.
07:16 Six years. Eight years.
07:17 Oh! Well, okay. 1 through 8.
07:20 Right not middle school. Not middle school.
07:21 Yeah. Okay.
07:22 Yeah, yeah. So everything has,
07:24 Yeah. nothing has changed,
07:26 well, how long does it take?
07:27 Well, there has been lots of changes not in that
07:28 basic formation, right, right.
07:30 But how long does it take to actually reform a school,
07:35 I mean if someone has a compelling vision
07:37 as you have, to see reform and I know you are even
07:41 trying institute reform at Weimar.
07:45 How long does it actually take
07:47 to put these things into place?
07:49 Well, as I did study, if you have a group that is
07:54 interested in coming together to really study
07:58 and change a school, the best guess that I could
08:03 give is 6 to 24 months. Okay.
08:06 Now 6 is. That sounds really..
08:09 High speed, high speed That's great...
08:12 I would say, that's unbelievable.
08:13 Yeah, yeah, yeah. That's if they're very focus
08:15 and two things that are very critical for the
08:21 change to happen and I visited a college once
08:27 and we visited them because they had just gone through
08:31 a very drastic reform of their school.
08:35 They went through this and redesigned their school.
08:39 So what we did we went in there and said
08:41 Well how did you do this. The president came out
08:43 and he talked with us. He said, there are two
08:46 things that are needed for this to happen.
08:50 No.1, either and I would say and or,
08:53 a compelling vision or a burning platform.
08:58 Another words, if things are going to go sour
09:01 they are gonna close the school.
09:03 Something is going to happen
09:05 that is a perfect time for change to happen.
09:09 Well, there are good schools out there,
09:12 I mean we are not saying that considering that
09:16 they're all still operating under the same system
09:18 I don't mean to speak with a fork tongue here,
09:21 but there are schools that are doing good jobs of
09:25 Yeah. Bringing these children up
09:27 and teaching them. So, if there is good schools
09:31 already then, what then?
09:34 Well. I mean if they are not getting
09:35 ready to be closed down. Why do people want
09:39 to change or how do we get, reach them?
09:41 Well, I think first what we do is, we do
09:43 a comparison, I mean if we're talking about a local school.
09:46 We do a comparison we say, how is my school stack up,
09:50 okay, Which goes back to that
09:51 first question you brought up, you know,
09:53 where these principles, so we take a look in the
09:55 book education, we've mentioned.
09:58 Take a look at the first paragraph and
10:00 we see three principles showing up.
10:02 The principle of a whole person learning,
10:07 so mind, body, spirit and she mentions also
10:09 the word harmonious, so harmonious development
10:13 of the mind and the body, the spirits, they're all
10:14 doing it together, then life long,
10:18 so this approach to learning,
10:20 So, look at your school and say, is my school fostering
10:24 a lifelong approach to learning or is the learning
10:27 categorized into just classes and its just
10:31 for grades. If it's just for grades and it's primarily
10:34 about learning Maths, Science, English
10:36 getting the check list done then it's not designed
10:39 to run lifelong learning. It's not including
10:42 families and doing exercises that you would love
10:46 to do yourself and have your parents
10:48 come in and they are joining in the learning process.
10:52 There are schools out there that are blending those
10:55 things together to make it lifelong learning.
10:59 And in service oriented. Yes, service oriented
11:02 learning. Another great question to look at
11:04 your local school and say, is it service oriented. Now
11:09 So, in other words, are you training the youth
11:12 to become service oriented rather than to
11:15 be self focused. Sure.
11:17 That's the point. Absolutely and
11:20 additionally are you actually using services
11:23 apart of the way to train them to be others oriented
11:26 Umh! That's good. So, is your school involved
11:29 in service oriented activities.
11:32 Some schools call these Bible labs.
11:34 So, you have Bible class where you study the Bible
11:36 and then you have the lab.
11:38 Where you go? Where you apply it, right.
11:40 And that's for the real learning class.
11:42 Oh! Yeah. I mean doesn't the Lord asked us that
11:43 the sheep and the goats you know,
11:45 feed me, take care of me. Right.
11:47 Cloth me. Let's look at that tease
11:50 in each part of Jim Collins' quote, but let's look at
11:55 that right now. The four quote because
11:57 I think this is a powerful quote from this
11:58 Business Selling Author. When I first read this
12:03 quote here, this absolutely amazed me.
12:06 It is good to great. Is the name of the book
12:10 that it comes from, think about this,
12:13 Good is the enemy of great. And in fact good in your
12:21 view of where I am now that means there is no
12:25 compelling vision to pull me further.
12:27 And you know I had someone recently,
12:30 well several years ago. When I was beginning,
12:34 or I was in full time ministry and still
12:37 early on and I had someone tell me, Shelly because
12:41 I was saying, all these things keep coming at me
12:43 I don't what to do and he said, God has called you
12:46 for a purpose and he said, but sometimes
12:49 the devil likes to put good things
12:51 around you to do keep you from answering
12:53 the call to God that you're so busy
12:55 doing the good that you never do the great.
12:58 And there is a lot of truth in that
13:00 and so schools who are involved and they know
13:04 that they've got a good product.
13:06 They shouldn't become complacent.
13:09 They should look at what you're talking about
13:10 and measure themselves and say are we doing
13:14 things this way because good, our good could
13:18 be the enemy of a greater system.
13:21 Yeah, yeah. The quote continues that
13:22 we could have that. That is just
13:24 this is amazing, look at this
13:26 And that is one of the key reasons why we have so
13:31 little that becomes great. We don't have great
13:34 schools, principally because we have good schools.
13:36 We don't have great government, principally
13:39 because we have good government.
13:41 I don't think we want to get out of tangent there.
13:44 A few people attaining great lives, in large part
13:47 because it's just so easy
13:49 to settle for the good life.
13:51 Yeah. Then he moves to
13:53 what his basic premises for the book
13:55 and that's about business. The vast majority of
13:59 companies never become great, precisely because
14:02 the vast majority become quite good and
14:07 that is the main problem. Now when I read that
14:10 I just tell you, just briefly about the book.
14:14 The book is about a research study that
14:18 took companies who had consistently strong stock
14:23 values and then all of a sudden somewhere
14:26 they just shot up, okay. so their value and their
14:30 stock value shoot up, so then they took
14:32 comparison companies with similar size,
14:35 similar time frames, similar stock values
14:37 and then they, but they didn't have that.
14:40 They just stayed. They didn't shoot up
14:42 right. So then they called these the good companies.
14:45 These are good companies. And then they called these
14:48 the great companies
14:49 and then and interestingly enough, this is what
14:52 I think really makes this research study
14:56 so compelling is number one, they were really searching
15:00 for truth. They were just saying what is really
15:03 going on and second of all, they looked for the
15:07 differences between these two companies,
15:09 so they studied that time period before, during,
15:12 and after that trajectory and when they study
15:19 that they reported the differences.
15:21 And his conclusion after this.
15:25 The summary of all of this wrapping it into a single
15:28 statement was that there was these good
15:32 companies and in fact, it was because
15:34 they were good they had to fight
15:36 that idea that they were good to become great.
15:41 They had to challenge that idea that we are not
15:44 as good as we can be To really achieve where
15:49 they really wanted to be.
15:50 One of my pet peeves is to hear somebody when
15:55 they are doing a job and may be it's not been done
15:57 to the highest of standards, and they'll say well,
16:01 it's good enough and you think, 'oh, but it
16:04 can be done better, let's do it better.
16:05 It's worth doing. It's worth doing.
16:07 Well. That's right
16:08 That one is something that was hammered into me.
16:11 Now when we think about Adventist schools.
16:15 Uh-uh! How are Adventist schools
16:19 doing as Christian schools Is it good?
16:23 It is very good. I think we have very
16:26 good reports coming out of Adventist education.
16:30 There is, I would say and of course, we know,
16:35 we talk about Adventist schools in general
16:37 and we can talk about Adventist schools
16:40 individually. So there is a lots of variants,
16:42 but we've done quite a bit of research
16:45 on Adventist education. There has been a several
16:47 studies done on the spiritual development and that's
16:51 been good. Some of the reports back,
16:54 coming back most recently have been done from a study
16:58 called cognitive genesis and it's actually a
17:01 cognitivegenesis.org. On the web you can download
17:05 information to take a look at how Adventist schools
17:08 are doing in general. What they've done
17:10 is they've taken look at this and their focus
17:14 was on the academic development.
17:18 Realizing that spiritual was the purpose, this is
17:20 why we are doing it, so that's those first
17:22 studies were done that with that focus.
17:26 Now the focus for this set of years in this study
17:31 is for academy development and some really,
17:35 I think quite profound results and we have
17:39 some slides here to. Good.
17:40 give the viewers summary of this.
17:46 Now here it is, Adventist Education,
17:48 they are found to be above average achievement,
17:51 they gave them an achievement test.
17:54 Above average in ability, they gave them a second
17:56 test to test for ability. Their cognitive abilities,
18:02 that which didn't ask questions about what they
18:05 knew. Above prediction and achievement,
18:08 now what that is, is they took students
18:12 particular ability and set well given that ability
18:15 we would expect them to achieve at this level
18:18 and what they did was they achieved
18:20 above that level. Umm.
18:22 Okay. So, in that prediction coming back to the slide.
18:27 Above average and prediction in all subjects
18:31 excellent. in all grades, above
18:35 average for all school sizes and above prediction
18:40 at all abilities and this last one is amazing.
18:42 We have some more coming yearly gains in achievement
18:45 Yearly gains in ability. Yearly gains in achievement
18:48 at given abilities. Now let's go to this,
18:51 we have one more slide here to show a chart.
18:53 I will show that one. This one shows the
18:57 new students, what it does it shows eighth
19:00 grade students. This is they took eighth
19:03 graders and they gave them the ability test
19:05 and the achievement test. Those new students who
19:09 were eighth graders for the first time in the
19:11 Seventh Day Adventist school scored right at the area
19:15 where you would expect them right around the
19:17 50th percentile. Okay.
19:18 Okay. Those that have been in an Adventist School
19:23 for one or two years, so you see what this
19:26 is starting to show now. Yes, yes.
19:27 They are scoring just at or above.
19:31 the 50th percentile. Those there have been
19:33 either they all eighth graders.
19:36 but those eight graders that have been in
19:38 Adventist School for three to five years
19:40 are now scoring between 50 and 65 in that
19:44 and those who have been spent all of their seven
19:48 years first grade through eighth grade.
19:50 Okay, coming to eighth grade because the test
19:53 is taken at the beginning of the eighth grade year
19:56 They are scoring up around the 65th percentile.
19:59 That's a significant difference.
20:01 And notice this is, this chart shows
20:03 achievement as well as abilities.
20:05 Right. That is significant. But now, you know, then
20:11 this makes the question. We just got through
20:14 saying if you're good, that could be dangerous
20:18 to becoming great, I mean, those scores seem
20:20 pretty great, but are we and I think the answer
20:26 is obvious that we've must not quite be there.
20:29 You wouldn't have this compelling, derived
20:32 to see reform. Are we meeting the objectives
20:37 of what your favorite books on education says.
20:44 We keep coming back to that.
20:45 Well, I go back, I'll tell you honestly.
20:50 I have a Ph.D. in Education.
20:51 I have studied this book. And the book being
20:54 Education by E.G. White. That's right,
20:56 the book Education. I've studied scripture looking
20:59 for Lord what do you want me to know about
21:03 how we need to educate. Here's what I understand
21:07 we have and I'll just say in my language,
21:11 we have been duped by society into thinking
21:15 what it means to be educated and we equate
21:18 that in the schooling. And then once schooling
21:21 is over we are done, I don't have to learn
21:24 anymore and even for our children we have this
21:28 idea that academics it means to be
21:32 successfully educated. Alright.
21:35 and it's just not true, that's not if you read
21:38 the Bible that's not the picture that comes out
21:40 of the Bible. I mean when I came
21:43 to the Bible I said, Lord I really want to know
21:47 you and I am not sure the Bible is the thing
21:49 and so I looked at evidence, and I looked at evidence
21:52 and then I came to believe, the Bible is the
21:56 word of God. Amen.
21:57 And then when I did that now I have to look
22:00 at the Bible differently. All the sudden I can't
22:04 look at it the same way, I have made a decision
22:07 the Bible is the word of God.
22:09 Once I make that decision now I don't read
22:13 it the same anymore. Now, instead of reading
22:16 preaching, I need teaching, I now come and I study
22:21 the word to say Lord teach me.
22:23 Amen, and he will it's a special
22:25 it's the whole different experience than going
22:29 Is the Bible real? Is it real God's word?
22:31 Because that a bit of skepticism, which
22:33 I think is what we need to be convinced that
22:36 the Bible is God's word to his people.
22:38 Yes. And then once we get convicted
22:41 about that then our study of the Bible changes
22:43 and we are looking for God.
22:45 What is good education? What is good learning?
22:50 And we find that education and redemption
22:53 are one. That's the process that's what God is
22:56 talking about. Helping us to become
22:59 recreated into his image.
23:00 And he desires for us Emphasis 3:16 says,
23:03 more than we could ever think or imagine.
23:08 So, if God then is taking us and why don't
23:13 can you quote or do you have that slide
23:16 on the first paragraph in the book Education
23:18 because I wanted to. Well, you want it, yeah,
23:20 we have the slide. Let's look at that, Our ideas of
23:25 of education take too narrow a view and too low a range.
23:28 Actually, I think that's may be slightly
23:29 miss quoted, I don't think view is in there, but
23:32 I am sorry that's my fault. There is a need
23:35 of a broader scope, a higher aim.
23:37 In other words, our ideas are too narrow
23:39 and too low. So, and what we are doing
23:45 at least we know we are doing a good job
23:46 in the spiritual development.
23:49 We are doing obviously a good job as far as
23:53 academic achievement, but God wants more.
23:59 Yeah, I think I don't want good. I don't want great.
24:04 I want God. That's good.
24:06 That's the real, that's I mean, you know,
24:09 we like good, we like great.
24:10 We are happy for folks on earth.
24:12 So say I'm the good writer, that's good.
24:13 No, no, that's great. That's God.
24:14 That's what we're looking for. Yeah. I mean
24:17 we've just got be, we need to be looking at our schools
24:21 and saying does it meet what God says.
24:23 Who. That's, that's
24:27 There is a thesis right there.
24:28 That's it, that's it. We really do.
24:30 We need to study it, and the best that
24:33 we've said this before. I don't want to be
24:34 the broken record, you know, what I am going to say.
24:36 Yes. The book Education to me
24:38 is the best study on biblical education
24:42 that I've ever found. So we are looking for
24:44 God's ideal, and I think you have a slide
24:48 that you wanted to show something.
24:50 So, yes. Here is one way to look at this.
24:52 This is the looking at the real versus the ideal
24:56 and this is what you can do this on your own.
25:00 You can do this in committees, teachers
25:03 can come together to do this
25:04 what they want to do. Is they want to identify
25:06 the real. What's really going in on our school.
25:08 What's happening now? And then what is the idea?
25:13 What does that look like I would say you find
25:16 that through scripture, right,
25:18 Yes, yes, through through reading and
25:20 studying and saying God what do you want
25:23 your schools to look like and then between those two
25:27 we saw an arrow called action steps and helping us
25:32 to move from where we are now,
25:34 to where we need to be.
25:36 So what are these actions steps? Well, can you give
25:40 us a simple overview of the process?
25:41 Absolutely, one Dr. Paul Bradley who is now with
25:47 the general conference of Seventh-Day Adventists
25:50 working in the department of the assessment
25:51 and program effectiveness. I think absolutely
25:55 a brilliant educator. He has come up with a
25:58 process and it's simple, it's easy to remember
26:02 and we'll show a slide, I'll walk you
26:05 through it, okay. Alright.
26:06 We are going to start clock wise and this goes
26:09 the way reality goes, purpose,
26:11 so if you want to change, help make a change,
26:14 identify know your purpose. Why do you exist
26:17 then you take a look at the real idea,
26:20 you start making plans. Put those plans
26:23 into practice and then your practice produces
26:27 a product and that product helps you
26:31 accomplish your purpose. So this, you could draw
26:35 an arrow clock wise around this.
26:37 You see that. Right.
26:38 Alright. Now I am going to push you just
26:41 a little bit. You're alright.
26:42 You're ready. Okay, Yes.
26:43 Hold on your seat here. Okay.
26:44 Okay. We are going to go back to that slide,
26:46 but I'm going to show you a process that
26:49 say use that same slide to show you around
26:52 backwards. Alright.
26:53 Okay. And what happens backwards.
26:55 We take a look at plans, okay.
26:58 How do you plan? How do you plan?
27:00 Well, what you do? Is your plan backwards?
27:03 You start with the purpose and you say what
27:06 products help us, accomplish that purpose
27:09 and then you design the practice of your school,
27:13 so that it accomplishes the product and
27:16 it will thus accomplish the purpose and then
27:19 you make plans to do that. See actually walk backwards,
27:21 it's called Backwards Design.
27:22 Steven Gabbe calls it starting with the end in
27:27 mind. Yes. So those are some rough ideas.
27:29 There is a whole process that we use and.
27:33 Randy, I know that We are running out of time
27:36 I can't believe it but, thank you
27:40 so much for being here and I know I've certainly
27:41 learned some things and I hope that you will some day
27:44 come back and see us again.
27:45 I'll be happy to, thanks.
27:47 Thank you. And for those of you at home
27:48 I hope that this is something that
27:50 if whether you are an educator or a parent,
27:53 grandparent that you will really give this some
27:55 thought and pray about it and seek God's ideal
27:58 for teaching our children.
28:00 Now, by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,
28:02 the love of the Father and the fellowship
28:04 of the Holy Spirit be with you always. Thank you.