The unending works of teachers related to children’s academic and holistic development are exhausting and exasperating at times. Due to this factor, the teacher has to be available at all times, catering to various doubts of diverse students, solving problems related to the cross-subject linkage, and designing curriculum and implementation plans. This level of involvement in a student’s development can take a toll on teachers’ minds- especially knowing that they need to keep repeating the same task day in and day out. In this way, the teacher’s professional development can play a significant role in boosting their progress.
Even though professional development can be done as skilling based out of school, less time available to them inhibits them. In such instances, the school principals can play a crucial role in teachers’ development by supporting them.
The school principal is at the apex of the institution’s structure to take administrative, regulatory, and supervisory decisions. Their control is not just limited to the course designs made by the teacher, maintaining the discipline of school students, or managing staff, but to a broader level of maintaining integrated progress of the school.
Let us discuss six ways in which the school principals can provide support to teachers-
Percolating positive environment
Principals are responsible for maintaining a positive environment at school. The workload of teachers gets substantially reduced, and positivity is induced. This ensures that the discipline code set by the principal should be adhered to by every member without requiring regular reinforcements from the side of teachers. It also enhances the overall academic achievements of students and extracurricular results.
Establishing Support System
Teachers spend a large part of their time at school teaching, but they need time to relax mentally and physically. Time-packed schedule further burdens teachers and does not help them provide quality education to students.
Also, in a school, teachers come from various backgrounds. Let’s say that a teacher is a member of the community that celebrates a festival that is of specific relevance to his/her community. However, the school does not have a holiday provision on that day. Instead of forcing teachers to show up, principals can be more accommodating in the approach, which will help build confidence among other teachers regarding school management.
At times, teaching professionals might need a creative edge to introduce extra things to bring efficiency to the teaching structure and make learning more experiential. In such conditions, principals must give leverage to teachers for experimentation on their part.
Teachers spend maximum time with their students understanding their nature, learning behaviour, and engagement rate in classes. However, the experiment must not be huge to cause a disruption that is difficult to adapt. Minor tweaks can always make the learning process better as per the performance of the class.
Encouraging Collaborative Learning
Principals can motivate teachers from various disciplines for a collaborative learning approach. They can consistently share new developments and learn more on cross-subjects. Setting aside timelines for them during a week when they can interact and share progress will help in the long run.
Despite their busy schedule, it is the principal who can play a pivotal role in gelling them up together and creating a supportive teaching community. Such collaboration will help them share their doubts about career building and student enhancement steps that could be taken from others’ learning.
Fair Decision Making
School principals have to be consistent about the treatment met to every student and teacher. They should be handled alike, without generating doubt about preferential treatment to others. Teachers expect the principal to take all their cases seriously, and this is where the latter’s impartial role and fair decision-making ability come into play. It will also reinforce the teacher’s promptness in the eyes of other students.
Inappropriate disciplinary behaviour should be handled equally for all, irrespective of the student’s class, religion, region, community, ethnicity, or anything else. This establishes the principal as a subject of respect among students and teachers, who will consider them as role models.
Allowing Scope of Improvement
Is there a human being who makes no mistake? Even the greatest person learns from their mistake, and so does the teacher. They are ordinary people and can falter at times. However, the role of the school principal here should be not to make a hype of those mistakes and to let them go after proper feedback. In the process of learning and teaching, the teacher might be wrong in their decision.
The feedback mechanism always allows for a scope of improvement. The principal should try to correct them after getting proper feedback from all the stakeholders, and make sure that the teachers are not embarrassed for petty actions. This would give them a progressing learning curve in the future.
Even though the teachers and principal might not interact with each other daily, keeping minor points in mind will improve the conditioning of the school and provide a better work environment for teachers. After all, it is not always the teachers who need help, and principals would require greater assistance from them to maintain the overall business of school running daily with ease and consistency. Principals know what it is to be in the teacher’s shoes, and working better for them would enrich a principal’s profile of exhibiting excellent leadership in a diverse place like a school.
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