Why I’m like Dolores Umbridge

Harry_Potter_and_the_Order_of_the_PhoenixIt’s true. As I start back to school this year I’m thinking a bit like Professor Umbridge. When she is introduced to the Hogwarts staff and students she says they should be “preserving what ought to be preserved, perfecting what needs to be perfected, and pruning wherever we find practices that ought to be prohibited.”

I love to listen to the Harry Potter audio books and for some reason this line in the Order of the Phoenix always catches my ear. It’s a nice combination of Jim Dale’s narration and the alliteration J. K. Rowling uses in this line.

And I can’t get “pruning” out of my brain.

I’m starting back this school year in a new school. It’s my fourth time starting new (3 schools and one position change). This time I feel far more prepared. I stayed in the same district, so it helps not to build a completely new network of support. As I join a new staff and a new library program, I am asking a lot of questions. As I gather information about the procedures that have been in place I am making decisions about what blends well with my philosophies, what must go completely, and what new procedures and practices I want to begin from scratch.

There is no need to do things for the sole reason of tradition unless the practice is a best practice and moves the library program toward reaching the vision of the school. At this time it’s my job to ask the right questions so that I can find balance.

I think there are times when it’s okay to be a bit of an Umbridge :)

August 27, 2014
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1 Comment

  • Reply Kathryn Judson

    I love it! (My 22 year old daughter knew your quote when I quizzed her! lol) Anyway…I am starting a second year and didn’t change anything until this year. There is some resistance…but anyway I am also feeling like Prof Umbridge. What type of things are you changing? (Just curious) Thank you for your blog!

    August 30, 2014 at 12:34 am
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