What's your principal like?

Discussion in 'New Teachers' started by Miss Beazly, Nov 4, 2009.

  1. Miss Beazly

    Miss Beazly Rookie

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    Nov 4, 2009

    I have posted on this forum in the past about how much I dislike my job. I have been looking at all aspects of the position the past several weeks to see what, if anything, I can change and finally decide whether I want to continue in this profession.
    I am curious to know about principals in other schools. Mine is moody, unpredictable, and has no problem yelling at the staff. She treats her assistant principal just as bad, and can be quite condescending to her.
    Is this typical behavior?
     
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  3. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Nov 4, 2009

    Mine is a total sweetheart.

    He's a member of a religious order, but still manages to acknowledge that some of us have family responsibilites outside of school. (I don't coach or moderate anything after school for the most part; he has said we can wait until my kids are older.)

    When I had bad health issues last year, he was not only accomodating, but gracious.

    He is professional at all times. He also teaches 2 classes, so he has a good idea of the realities that we all deal with.
     
  4. goopp

    goopp Devotee

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    Nov 4, 2009

    I have a wonderful principal. She treats our entire staff like family, is excellent with parents, loves all the students...I couldn't ask for a better principal. I was out for 2 weeks after foot surgery and she even came by my house and brought a meal for my family. I'm out with H1N1 this week and she keeps telling me to stay home and get rest, to not come back till I am completely better.

    Can you tell I love my principal?
     
  5. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Nov 4, 2009

    A couple of years ago, I had a horrible principal that was moody, had her favs, treated the others like crap, and found multiple ways to make lives miserable.

    This year I'm in a school where the principals are supportive of their staff, they back them up when a parent is causing waves, and they believe in family first.
     
  6. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Nov 4, 2009

    I'll take the high road on this one and not comment.
     
  7. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Nov 4, 2009

    My principal starts every conversation with me with, "How's <Cat> today?" At first I thought it was just coddling because I was a new teacher last year, but he continues to pay attention to whether I'm happy or struggling in my position. He honestly cares about the welfare of each teacher in his charge as well as each student. He has my loyalty because he has earned it through his loyalty to his charges.
     
  8. Pisces_Fish

    Pisces_Fish Fanatic

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    Nov 4, 2009

    Mine is moody, condescending, controlling, and unreasonable. I can think of more colorful adjectives, but I'll stop there.
     
  9. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Nov 4, 2009

    Awww! If I could bring you to my school I would in a heartbeat! :hugs:
     
  10. Ron6103

    Ron6103 Habitué

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    Nov 4, 2009

    My principal is great.... supportive, friendly, never a problem. Treats staff like professionals and lets us enjoy quite a bit of autonomy in the classroom. I know this sounds like a fluff piece, but I enjoy working for him, and really would be upset if he left.
     
  11. rachaelski

    rachaelski Habitué

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    Nov 4, 2009

    I took this job because of the P and AP. They are both amazing....supportive and realistic with teachers, kind and caring with the students, and able to keep a smile on her face when dealing with parents. I cannot say enough good about her.

    I had a terrible principal last year. I am pretty sure she was bipolar undiagnosed. She treated the teachers terribly, yelled at the kids and teachers, miss a lot of work, and lied to the parents. I questioned whether or not I wanted to continue to teach. Luckily I did!
     
  12. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    Nov 5, 2009

    I think principals are like everybody else - the good, the bad and the ugly. I am sorry you got ugly. A good leader can sure make a difference. Due to budget cuts mine is trying to lead 2 schools/programs, is totally stressed and isn't doing anything well. She didn't used to be that way and it is hard to see the changes. We used to be friends...so sad.
     
  13. lsho

    lsho Rookie

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    Nov 5, 2009

    Not typical!

    My principal is amazing. The staff is treated like friends/family. She truly cares about each of us and our professional and personal lives. She also really loves our students. During staff meetings, she has teared up when talking about how much we do for all of them. I know that she would go out of her way to help any teacher or student in whatever way she could. She is always quick with a smile, advice, or just a kind word. Wouldn't have made it through the first few weeks of school if I hadn't known I had such a great support system behind me!
     
  14. magister

    magister Rookie

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    Nov 5, 2009

    Good principals should be teachers first so they know both sides of the game and can anticipate teachers' needs. Having strong management and personal skills also helps, of course. It's interesting to note how people use power. Some principals like to control everything while others decentralize and let teachers have more freedom.

    My principal's a kind person, but in terms of leadership seems to lack good decision making. The teachers usually talk behind his back and make no effort to hide their displeasure. His siding with parents and undermining teacher authority is one reason for it.

    He puts priorities on secondary concerns like aesthetics and makes strange purchases, such as buying new flat screen monitors when the school needed better computers and buying microwaves for classrooms so the teachers could heat up their students' lunches. No joke.
     
  15. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Nov 6, 2009

    I just got back from an impromptu talk with my principal. He had no problem with my dropping in unannounced and was happy to go over my most recent observation notes in detail. We also talked about what I could do to improve differentiation and hooks in my classroom, and he was happy to see I had already made improvements since his observation (remember, in my school my "classroom" is a web page). On top of all of this, my assistant principal came in and gave me recommendations on which hockey games I should try to see this season because he knew I was a Blue Jackets fan!

    Sorry, had to brag a bit. I may get frustrated with my school sometimes, but for the main part I cannot fathom going back to a traditional setting, mainly because of how great my principal is.
     
  16. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    Nov 18, 2009

    My principal is a first year principal and he talks the talk but doesn't walk the walk. He is open to us going to him with problems or issues but he using our secretary as a confidante, so nothing is really private b/c someone will hear about it sooner rather than later... He also doesn't want to give his opinion on anything or even tell us what he wants us to do. He would rather us do it, then he will tell us what we did wrong and then make us fix it -- for example, he used to audit IPPs for my school district, so rather than tell us his expectations (I requested that the staff have a meeting so he can go through an old IPP with us), he told us that we were all professionals and to write them like we have in the past but then he made a few teachers redo them b/c he didn't like them.

    I am on my third year in this school district and have had awful luck with principals at my school. The last one played favorites and was constantly threatening us with the union and after accusing us of things that she heard, she will refuse to apologize when she was proven wrong b/c "she was just acting on what she heard"... Needless to say, she ran our school into the ground in 1 year and she was moved to a new school...
     

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