Sunday, September 18, 2011

Maintaining Student Connections: 7 Tips for Future and Current Administrators

It is normal for school administrators to examine their leadership as a function of leading and supporting teachers. The logic is simple to follow:

School leader supports teacher.
Supported teacher is more effective in class.
Students learn more (and better).

The above logic highlights a reason why some teachers do not make the move to administration.

Teachers who consider making a shift into administration sometimes worry about loosing their daily connection with students. 

This is natural.  After all, realizing that your daily focus from guiding and teaching students will move more towards leading and managing teachers can be a cause for some anxiety.

If you are a teacher who is considering adminstration or if you are an administrator who is finding it difficult to maintain connections with students, here are a few suggestions.

  1. Mark off "student time" on your calendar.
  2. Make it a goal to visit at least one class a day.
  3. Eat lunch in the dining hall with students as much as possible.
  4. Greet students at drop off and see them leave at pick up (same for bus lines).
  5. Hold small student group discussions during lunch.
  6. Take an active interest in the work of your student government group.
  7. Go to their games and activities.  Refer to those activities when you see the students at school.
These are only a few ideas about how to maintain your connection with students as yo umove into administration.  While you may not have the same time with them that you had when you taught them, you can certainly keep a connection with them.

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