Saturday, September 25, 2010

Avoiding Difficulties, Ensuring Success

Educational leaders have a great deal of influence in how successful the faculty will be at a school.  The leader is also a primary reason why some faculties are put in to difficult situations.

Educational leaders put their teachers in difficult positions when:

  • The leader is not sensitive or responsive to the collective needs of the group.  Here the faculty risks being pushed when they should be refreshed.
  • The leader attempts to direct the work of the faculty in the same manner in which the leader directs the work of the administration.  Teachers may become confused with the direction and lack of clarity that may result from such an unfamiliar approach to communication.
  • The leader does not recognize when a program, project, or operation is being well managed.  This results in a leader undertaking responsibility for an initiative that should be left to the faculty, thus creating doubt in the minds of the teachers about the leader’s confidence in them.

Educational leaders ensure success when:

  • They recognize when its best to engage in program reform (out with the old and in with a new) and when to engage in program refinement (improving what is already in place).
  • They engage both groups of teachers and individual teachers in a manner that motivates each to ensure the school’s mission.
  • Everyone in the school is focused on the accomplishment of the same mission – from the last person hired to the first, from the janitor to the highest level of administration.
  • They are never satisfied with the current state of affairs.  Happy – maybe; satisfied – never.
  • They are fully capable and not “handcuffed” by other forces outside the school.

Be aware of your strengths and challenges.  Use those strengths as a foundation from which to address your challenges.  In the end, you will be the pillar of strength at your school.     

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