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You can’t get arrested for jaywalking in Boston

The city of Boston has no law for jaywalking.

You can just cross the road wherever you like and the expectation is that you’ll just have a good look around first and try not to cause a bingle (I’m quite sure use of the word ‘bingle’ in the US is somewhat limited though).

You’d be tempted to think that this apparent chaos would result in an unacceptably high rate of pedestrian-vehicle collisions. This simply isn’t the case. Boston has one of the lowest rates of pedestrian injuries and deaths in the entire country.

What’s up with that?  Well, what’s up is that the culture in Boston is simply that pedestrians and motorists are expected to work together and not against each other.  They’re just not in competition for the next 5m of precious distance or the next 1.5 seconds of time.

When systems based on cooperation are embedded the need for rules and laws just drifts away.

The lesson for us in schools is to think a little more about how we are going to encourage cultures where the behaviours of learning and cooperation are culturally normal … and a little less about what we’ll ban and police as part of a rule enforcing agenda.  I like that idea for little else than the latter reeks of effort and I’m inherently just a little bit lazy!

And there’s also an ancillary benefit to what’s going on in Boston.  The police force aren’t wasting time writing jaywalking tickets for people just trying to get to a job interview on time.  They’re doing work more linked to purpose.

I think every Teacher would like to create some more room for purpose related work above merely catching kids breaking rules.


FREE WEBINAR – “Authentic Collaboration”

We know authentic collaboration within our schools makes massive impact on students…. and yet creating a culture where everyone is open to learning together and shifting practice is tricky!What are the elements of a staff learning culture that is curious, dynamic, and open to deep learning?  A place with a buzz? These schools create strong, forward momentum for growth.


Tracey Ezard has been fascinated by schools that manage to create this culture for most of her teaching and leadership career.  Her books ‘The Buzz’  and ‘Glue ‘ explore these cultures and their key elements.

In this session, Tracey and Adam will discuss:
• Why creating a psychologically safe team culture leads to better adult learning
• What authentic collaboration really looks like
• The key pillars of ‘The Buzz’ that leaders can focus on to improve collaborative culture
• Trust building as one of the first and most important jobs for a leader

This is a completely FREE 1-hour opportunity that you simply can’t miss.

Tracey is a keynote speaker, author and educator, who is dedicated to inspiring people to collaborate and thrive in the workplace. She is the author of two books, The Buzz – Creating a Thriving and Collaborative Staff Learning Culture and Glue – The Stuff that Binds Us Together to do Extraordinary Work.

Tracey is a former Victorian State primary teacher, with her last position being Assistant Principal. For more than 12 years, Tracey has delivered leadership development programs across a number of states, for leading teachers and principal class. She has worked with many schools and education systems around the whole of Australia in the development of leadership, teams, collaborative cultures and strategy. Tracey works with leaders and teams who want to elevate above convention and create extraordinary outcomes. She works with people who understand that the world requires a new type of leadership – one that is focussed on collaboration, learning and relationships.