Hundreds of books have been written on the subject of leadership. Most would agree, generally speaking, that things run better when a solid leader is at the helm. Teachers always feel better about their work when they have an amazing principal coming alongside to help them be their best. How does a great leader affect the students in public schools? What role does a principal have in shaping and molding these young lives outside of disciplinary correction?
Principals all over the United States are working very hard to make sure their public schools run smoothly. They take direction from the school district’s superintendent but the day-to-day success is clearly their responsibility. How they interact with teachers, staff, parents, and students can either build up or tear down the community that is their school. The culture of the school community is the result of the leadership skills of the principal.
What Are Some Of The Qualities of A Great Leader In General?
There are a few hallmarks of a great leader. If you study some of the most famous, either in politics, education, or business, you will see the common threads among them.
They Expect Nothing Less Than Excellence
This the tricky one because terrible leaders can also demand excellence. How exactly you implement the expectation of excellence is really what matters most. The most successful leaders combine the expectation of excellence with the understanding they will help the people under their leadership be as excellent as they can be. It is an understanding of partnership, not a directive to be carried out at all costs. Great leaders see themselves as co-laborers for a cause, not the boss to be feared.
They Invest In The People Around Them
We’re not talking about the monetary kind of investment as much as a personal one. Ask anyone under a great leader and they will all tell you one thing about their leader that they like most; they care. It takes a big leader to put the effort into building people up instead of seeking accolades for themselves. In this case, the reward a great leader receives is seeing others attain success, not chasing after their own.
They Are Someone You Can Count On
Everyone makes a mistake now and then at work. Everyone has a bad day here and there. What’s amazing about a great leader is they will always have your back. Sometimes backing someone means you acknowledge they’ve made a choice that requires correction and avoidance in the future but that doesn’t mean they don’t carry out those kinds of conversations with caring and support. A great leader knows how to measure accountability by treating others with dignity and kindness.
How Great Leader Qualities Impact A Student Body In Public Schools
It could be easy to skim this information and say, “Well, that’s all true but I have hundreds of kids in my school and it is impossible to interact with each of them at that level every day.” You wouldn’t be wrong in assuming that. Still, there is something to be said about building a reputation as a great leader in your school community. Kids listen to other kids. They tell stories, they set expectations for their peers.
Everyone heard the story about the mean teacher in their school growing up. Did you operate under the assumption that they were mean and conduct yourself accordingly? The same goes for a great leader like a principal. Be the principal that builds a reputation as a great leader.
Here are some practical ways you can do that:
- Take part in social interaction with your students on a regular basis
- Follow through on promises and commitments with students, teachers, and parents
- Make sure discipline comes with kindness and a spirit of help not control
- Let individual students know you are staying abreast of any issues that concern them
- If you know a student needs extra support, tell them you are personally involved
How A Great Leader Stays Attuned To Needs In A Public School
It would all be so easy if there was time to meet with every teacher and discuss students that needed more support on a weekly basis, but that is not practical. A great leader knows when they need help being the best leader they can be. They know what they don’t know and they find ways to overcome those challenges. How does a principal or superintendent stay informed and involved with students that need more and still keep their sanity?
eCare Vault is the first solution of its kind to devise a way to manage all the information that goes with a student, collects notes and communication with everyone involved in the student’s educational journey, and makes it seamless for anyone in education leadership at their school or school district to collaborate and stay informed. A great leader knows to educate themselves and how to best communicate in a given situation.
eCare Vault helps a great leader like yourself in a public school elevate their reputation within their schools, with school parents, and student body by allowing them to participate in a practical, effective way. If communication is key to being a great leader then sound technology is critical to making it happen in today’s public schools.