Aspiring Administrators

Today I had the absolute pleasure of spending the afternoon with a group of our team members who are considering formal school principal leadership, at some point in their future. It was extremely evident from the beginning of the afternoon that their eyes have been opened to the qualities and actions of effective leaders with whom they have come in contact with as a result of their work. Our team members have no misconceptions about what it takes to create a culture of trust, respect and accountability in a school setting.

The presentation team effectively set the stage by sharing
the Rita Pierson video, Every Kid Needs a Champion.

When considering taking the leap into formal leadership, the question about work and home balance always garners great conversation and like most complex questions, there is not one answer which is right for everyone considering this role.
One’s own personal definition of balance and those factors which may or may not be in one’s control will all play a part in a teacher’s decision to take on a vice principalship. The other interesting conversation in which we engaged in was about professional learning beyond the minimum expectation. Our board is one
of the few boards that has an expectation that our administrators will get their Masters at some point in their administrative career. Does one take a Masters to meet an organizational requirement or does one take a Masters as a natural next step on a continued educational journey? The Great Debate!
In order to allow a “teachers only” conversation, administrators transitioned to another room where we looked at Chapter 7 from The Multiplier Effect. After reading a blog written by a colleague, Lisa Munroe I had tagged this book for my summer reading list. But after today’s discussion I may not wait until the balmy days of summer to crack open the spine on this book. Without giving away too much of the book,  the information shared
about a leader’s ability to become an “Accidental Diminisher” was very enlightening. The chapter provides the reader with some descriptors of well-intentioned actions on a ‘part, which may in fact be more harmful than helpful when it comes to supporting the leadership development of others.

Kudos to our system staff development team who offered this afternoon’s session, as an opportunity for us as a board to begin to have important conversations with educators who may be thinking about the role of Vice Principal.
And as all effective professional learning opportunities include, not only did the intended audience of aspiring Administrators walk away with new learning, but a seasoned, mature administrator like myself, was inspired to check out a new resource and to reflect on whether or not I’m “accidentally diminishing” the leadership ability of those whom I’m supporting.

Thinking about formal leadership?

Come write with me….


2 thoughts on “Aspiring Administrators

  1. The session I attended with Sarah Sanders left me with wanting to know more. It was incredibly insightful to have very newly minted VPs present their learning and continued questions about their role as it sits with them today. The rawness and and precious insights gave me chills but also elevated the role to a better understanding. For this I am grateful as I head off to my acting role in the fall. I have been blessed and challenged by my own questions and the leadership of many who have gone before me. For each person’s journey is their own.

  2. Sue,

    I agree the session I attended last week was wonderful. Very informative and supportive, and it has changed my thinking on many levels. It will be interesting to see what the next few years brings in our system as the need for new administrators increases. An exciting time for sure!

    Thanks for the recommendation on yet another text – your brief description makes me want to explore what an “accidental diminisher” is.

    Happy Friday!

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