Becoming Principal (Part 6)

IF I HAD REACTED BADLY IN THIS SITUATION, rest assured everyone within earshot would have been telling all of their friends that I had lost my temper and was not very approachable. I’m not sure I changed this parent’s mind about me that year, but the real issue, I knew, had nothing to do with me and I just had to grow a thicker skin. This was tough for me. As someone who doesn’t like conflict, this also means that I am much more comfortable around people who are usually getting along. As I was to learn in the years … Continue reading Becoming Principal (Part 6)

Becoming Principal (Part 5)

If there is anything I have learned over my years of experience as a school leader, it is this: stand by your people, take care of your people, LOVE your people! If you’ve ever heard the saying, “Feed the teachers, or they will eat the students,” and thought that it was just a funny phrase, you’re wrong! It’s absolutely, hands-down, 100% true! I mean, they won’t actually eat the kids, but it is true that they will treat them with love and respect if they feel loved and respected themselves. And the phrase doesn’t mean you necessarily have to feed them … Continue reading Becoming Principal (Part 5)

Becoming Principal (Part 4)

As you find yourself in situations where you don’t know what to expect, it can be easy to simply let life happen to you, to roll with the punches and react when things happen. “After all,” you may ask, “How can I prepare for the unexpected?” And the answer is that you can’t. Not really. It is a waste of time to go down the rabbit hole of “what if” scenarios. But what you can do is listen to people, ask lots of questions, and find time for yourself to do a lot of reflection so that you are fresh … Continue reading Becoming Principal (Part 4)

Becoming Principal (Part 3)

MY OFFICIAL START DATE WAS JULY 1st, BUT I’M PRETTY SURE I was in that building the very first chance I could get. I was a hot mess, really – filled with anticipation, excitement, dread and fear – but mostly I was just humbled and feeling very blessed to have gotten this opportunity to serve as principal. I had a lot to learn, and I knew that; in fact, I had been saying it since the very beginning and as I mentioned, I even said it to the interview team at that first meeting together: “I don’t know much about elementary … Continue reading Becoming Principal (Part 3)

Becoming Principal (Part 2)

THERE IS NO TRAINING FOR WHAT TO EXPECT YOUR FIRST YEAR AS PRINCIPAL, BUT I THINK THAT’S ON PURPOSE. Once the school year prior to my first official principal role was complete, except for a couple of introductory meetings, I was pretty much left to myself as I officially began the transition to my new school district. I found myself spending a lot of time in my new office, taking walks around the school, starting (trying) to figure things out. There was only one strange event that occurred during the final weeks of the previous school year, when the assistant … Continue reading Becoming Principal (Part 2)

Becoming Principal (Part 1)

BECOMING TAKES TIME. It takes patience, and it takes the cultivation of one’s mind and body and soul. It cannot be sought out. It happens naturally. Like becoming a parent. You can work at it once it happens, but to Become is a bit of a mystery in itself. I did not see myself Becoming Principal. I did not want it,I did not have any aspirations towards it,I certainly did not seek it out.At least,Not at first. And when it happened, when I physically received the title of Principal, I did not embrace it, did not fully grasp what it … Continue reading Becoming Principal (Part 1)