Moving from teacher to administrator...advice needed

Discussion in 'General Education' started by qwerty-, Oct 8, 2019.

  1. qwerty-

    qwerty- Rookie

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    Oct 8, 2019

    Hello fellow educator's-

    I'm hoping to gain some insight as to what people's thoughts and experiences are on moving from a teacher position to an administrative position. I have received an offer to move into a new role in a school that I am excited about. However, there is a good part of me that thinks I will miss teaching and the relationships that come with teaching.

    Anything you might contribute concerning the topic is appreciated!
     
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  3. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Oct 8, 2019

    I said for years I would never want the administrator jobs. Yet I find myself reaching a point where I possibly might just maybe in another dimension at the right school in the right situation reconsider that.

    I like being in the classroom, I like presenting the information and working with students. But, I've worked the "desk job" before, and I like desk jobs and doing behind-the-scenes work.
     
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  4. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Oct 8, 2019

    The best advice I can give you is to remember what it is like to be in the classroom and treat your fellow educators with that knowledge in mind.
    The next best advice is to trust that your teachers have not forgotten their job during your transition period and don't be a micro-manager.
     
  5. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    Oct 8, 2019

    Kind of says it all, as far as I am concerned.
     
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  6. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Oct 12, 2019

    I highly encourage you to try to spend time in the classroom, even if you are working as an administrator. Not solely in a supervising role, either - take some time to ask a couple of students how their day is going, what they're working on, etc. So many of my current observations are someone coming through, checking boxes off a check list, and then moving on. I wonder if they even see the students as more than data points. Even if it's 5 minutes a week per classroom, or ten minutes a month per classroom, whatever works, try to still know the amazing, imperfect children who are hard at work. I don't often see administrators doing this, but the best administrators I've seen have had this habit in common.

    Good luck!
     
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  7. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Oct 12, 2019

    This is good advice also.
     
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  8. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Comrade

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    Oct 13, 2019

    I had what I could call the best principal ever for many years. It was in a huge school and they put her there because they needed the best, I am pretty sure. She was supportive of teachers. If kids misbehaved, she did not accept excuses and backed the teachers. She made the school staff feel like, "We are in this together."
    She motivated me to learn and do more than I ever thought was possible. I did more for her than I'd do for any P again ( Including evenings, weekends, and summer). She appreciated teachers and kids who were doing their best. She helped teachers who needed help in a nice way. ( Learning as opposed to punitive.)
    She had a lot of fun ideas to help when needed. When attendance became a concern, she'd announce teachers could have an hour's lunch and kids got an extra recess if they had perfect attendance that week. It actually worked, and we'd bond as teachers at lunch at a local restaurant. That is just 1 small example of how she solved problems.
    She truly helped make the school a well oiled community. We took pride in our school. We were also the " Super Star School" because of her leadership. We wanted to keep that reputation. I was raised not to be a "butt kisser" for lack of a better word. However, there wasn't anything I wouldn't have done for her.
    She celebrated successes of both staff and students. She used to order huge strawberry cakes from a bakery for us. Still to this day, I have never tasted any cake like that! :) Know your local baker. lol She had luncheons for us and we actually had fun at in-services. She had an awesome sense of humor too.
    She was kind, strong, honest, did not gossip, truly cared about teachers and kids, thoughtful, and more. She was not "friends" with teachers, but almost like a good mother to me and others. After I moved and went back for visits, we became friends.
    Her character was what made her such a wonderful principal. I could make you a list of things not to do too because I have worked for a P who was not "cut out" for being a P too for a time.
    Oh, and 1 thing I will never forget about her. She would back you in front of parents. 1x a psycho parent started blaming me for all of her child's problems in life. She knew the parent was psycho and made sure lots of people were in that meeting from counselors, to teammates, to assistant P's. When the parent started in on me, she told her, " She should not have to listen to your rants!" Then she told me that I didn't need to hear this and told me to go take a break!
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2019
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  9. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Comrade

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    Oct 13, 2019

    1. Look for the good in people and you will find it. If you look for the bad, you'll find that too.
    2. Remember to say, "Thank you!" ( I worked for a P who did not have these 2 basic words in his vocab.)
    3. Even if you are beyond irked, bite your tongue, call someone long distance for advice. Do not react or snap at teachers or parents.
    4. This goes w/ #3, the reason for long distance calls is that once your anger subsides, you do not want that person to know what you said or thought. It may turn out to be a total misunderstanding. Also, realize that word does get around especially if you are bad mouthing teachers.
    5. Do not become friends with certain teachers. It makes other staff feel like you have favorites and they probably will be your favorites if you are friends. These so called friends may also be sharing info or repeating your words to other staff. This starts a rumor mill.
    6. Have a sense of humor! Remember: You are not perfect and neither is your staff. Everyone makes mistakes. If you want people to overlook your flaws and errors, don't make a big deal out of theirs.
    7. Try to seriously build a community of respect. It may not be easy, but as a leader, you set the tone. It might take time for everyone to pick up on it, but I have seen it happen with some tricky people.
    8. Reflect on yourself a lot. What irks you the most and why? What can you do for yourself to "let it go?"
    9. Celebrate and make reasons to celebrate with your staff. ( Not after school, but maybe during a lunch period.)
    10. Be honest. Once you get caught in a lie, nobody will trust you. They probably will not tell you that, but P's who lie are known pretty quickly.
    Those are just 10 off the top of my head.
    Good luck and I hope you are successful in your transition. It is smart to get insight from teachers anonymously like this!
     

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