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Today's Agenda

Speaking of leadership, what’s on your agenda today?  Maybe observing a teacher, meeting with students, dealing with a discipline problem, checking with the bus garage, calming an irate parent, talking to the superintendent, reviewing test data, dealing with a bus referral, lobbying your local legislator, conferring with the union chief, dropping by the cafeteria.  That should take you to noon.

When you get a spare minute, it’s always interesting and informative to learn what’s happening at the state and national level in education.  Eventually some of it will trickle down to your individual school or district and you’ll have to deal with it in some way. 

For the most part, however, the daily leadership decisions of a school administrator are based on a mixture of school culture, district protocols, union contracts, legal decisions, precedent, time limits, ethics, your own experience … and heart.  Sometimes you have a trusted colleague to bounce things off of and sometimes you have to go with your instinct.  Sometimes you’re sure you’re doing the right thing; other times it’s your best guess.

This blog will be about the challenges and decisions we have on a day-to-day basis as school administrators. It will also be about opportunities we have to lead. Less theory, more practice.  After 10 years of teaching and nearly 25 years as an administrator, I know that leadership is more important than ever in our schools.  And leadership isn’t just the stuff of speeches and newspaper leads; it’s found in the examples set by school administrators across the country as they deal with issues like attendance, achievement, budgets and discipline.  Daily leadership will be the focus of this blog; maybe we can share our ideas and experiences for one another’s benefit.

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in Practical Leadership are strictly those of the author and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Scholastic, Inc.