5 Ways to Create an Enriched Learning Environment for ALL Students

It is imperative that building principals create a school environment that is inviting, engaging, and conducive to learning for ALL students.  One fundamental belief based upon the work of Howard Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences is that ALL students are gifted and talented in some (many) area(s) beyond the findings of any formalized assessment measure. Sadly, with all the demands of local, state, and federal mandates, an enriched learning environment for ALL students can get lost in the noise of bureaucracy and a false sense of accountability.Continue reading “5 Ways to Create an Enriched Learning Environment for ALL Students”

How A School Administrator Can Deal With Unexpected Hiccups

Principals plan for every possible situation that can happen during a regular school day. By doing so, they can prepare to pivot on a dime to meet the current needs of staff, students, parents, and the school at large. Principals worth their salt can quickly organize recess on a rainy day, serve lunch when the cafeteria staff is down a worker, and teach a 7th grade History lesson when the substitute teacher doesn’t show up, all on a moments notice. Continue reading “How A School Administrator Can Deal With Unexpected Hiccups”

5 Ways to Reimagine Your School’s Vision Statement

A school’s vision statement is often overlooked, hidden, or inexplicably non-existent. It can be found on most school’s websites, hidden among bells schedules, lunch options, teacher websites, and PTA pages. Teachers, administrators often don’t know what is written in their school’s vision statement. Parents don’t either. Students … well, you get the picture. However, shouldn’t we all know the ideological foundation of the institution that we send our children to or work at each and every day?Continue reading “5 Ways to Reimagine Your School’s Vision Statement”

5 Ways to Increase The Wellness of Teachers

Wellness is a hot topic these days. Educators are under more stress than ever before. It seems like every time we turn around, schools are in the news for all the wrong reasons: abuse, poor performance, scandals, violence, and crime. This list goes on and on. Working under these conditions can be very stressful on a teaching staff, as they have been tasked with curing our society’s ills by reaching out to one child at a time. These stressful conditions have led to teachers getting sick more often, taking leaves of absence for stress, and for some, quitting the profession all together. Continue reading “5 Ways to Increase The Wellness of Teachers”

5 Ways To Increase Technology Use for Teachers and Students

The educational technology business is a multi-billion dollar industry. Every year, districts spend tens of thousands of dollars on new programs, devices, tools, and gadgets. Sadly, many schools receive these new programs, devices, tools, and gadgets, and let them sit in boxes or unused on desktops. Not only are precious funds being wasted, but opportunities for dynamic teaching and learning are being lost. Technology must be seen as a tool to enhance the learning process, not a hindrance, annoyance or distraction.Continue reading “5 Ways To Increase Technology Use for Teachers and Students”

5 Ways to Foster Teacher Leadership

The bedrock of a great school is shared leadership. All stakeholders must have a seat at the decision-making table. This ensures that the vision and direction of the school is decided upon collectively and in the best interest of all parties. Teachers are key players in the process and need to be encouraged to step into leadership roles. After all, great leaders don’t create followers; they create more leaders. Continue reading “5 Ways to Foster Teacher Leadership”

5 Ways Principals Can Build Trust

One of the most important books that I have read in my career is The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni. In his book, Lencioni outlines the elements needed to build strong, cohesive teams. Here is a link to the book: Five Dysfunctions of a TeamTrust is the foundation in which productive teams are build upon. Remember: Earn trust, earn trust, earn trust. Then you can worry about the rest (Seth Godin). Continue reading “5 Ways Principals Can Build Trust”

5 Educational Concepts We Need To Eliminate In 2018

It has been a year since I published the article, “5 Educational Concepts We Need to Eliminate in 2017”. It has been read and shared over 40,000 times since its publication. The feedback received from this article has given me much to write about over the past year, with many other articles from The Principal’s Desk originating from these exchanges. With 2018 fast approaching, I have five more educational practices to look at in order to reform our educational system and improve our schools. Continue reading “5 Educational Concepts We Need To Eliminate In 2018”

5 Ways You Can Be a More Involved Parent

Parents are an integral part of a school’s community. Without parent support, schools would not be able to perform certain aspects of the curriculum, programming, or culture at preferred levels. With many parents working full time, and some with two jobs, it might seem hard to find the time to volunteer at their child’s school. However, it is time to rethink traditional parent volunteerism and look for alternative ways that parents can both work and be involved in the school community. Continue reading “5 Ways You Can Be a More Involved Parent”