For a progressive organization, absence of a leader is like a ship without its captain and an army without a leader. School education has reformed multiple folds in today’s times and a School Principal is the anchor to which the progress of the school is tied to. Although teacher quality is foremost for a school to be successful, the role of School Principal in improving the school’s performance is also essential and can’t be ignored.
A study conducted by the University of Minnesota and Toronto showed that improved school performance is dependent on a lot of factors and it is the job of the principal to make sure that such conditions are present in the school that show progress.
We look at some of the roles of the school principal that are essential in bringing laurels and appreciation to the school.
Laying the foundation
- Establishing a clear understanding: A clear sense of direction is desirable to achieve targets and be successful. The principal should form a close knitted team of all the teachers and staff members and educate them about the shared goals and visions regarding the performance of the school. Once the team knows the target they will find purpose in their work and restructure their activities to attain the target more effectively.
- Building a team:Once the goals to be successful are established, the school principal then should be proactive in building a team spirit to actually get the work done. Teachers, staff members and everyone who is a stakeholder in the success of the school should be encouraged to voice their concerns and opinions. They should engage in healthy discussions with the Principal and start working on a roadmap to success. The School Principal should be approachable to all the team members so that whenever a roadblock is encountered or a new approach comes to their mind, they can easily communicate it to the Principal.
Improving Teaching Practices: The foremost factor which contributes to the success of the school in terms of student performance is the quality of the teachers. The School Principal should be proactive in improving the quality of teaching by helping teachers to upgrade themselves.
This can be done through regular seminars, workshops and hands-on training imparting the latest education technology. The teachers get to know the latest advancements in education and incorporate them into their classroom practices. Through these advancements, students learn more effectively and excel at their studies.
Improving Interpersonal Relations: If the teachers are not motivated enough to go that extra mile to achieve success for their students or do not feel valued at work, then it could pose a major roadblock to attaining success. The School Principal should be more humane and emotionally intelligent to judge where the pain points of the teachers are present.
Taking out time to connect with all the teachers individually creates a healthy environment and gives a feeling of being valued by the school administration. When all are treated equally, then feelings of biases and partiality do not read their head and teachers do what they do best i.e. teaching.
Encourage peer support: Some senior teachers can be appointed as mentors for new teachers and help them in understanding the functioning of the school. By providing peer support, teachers learn a lot through observation and inculcate good practices in their teaching process.
Mentor teachers can observe classes going on and they can then provide constructive feedback on how student attention can be improved by making topics more interesting and more interactive. A few senior teachers can be delegated important duties in developing strong resources and providing support to the new teachers. This would also hone their leadership skills and contribute to the improvement of student performance.
Revamping the School Setup
The School Principal when planning to drastically change the school performance should first focus on revamping the school set-up:
Developing Collaboration between teachers: The School Principal should strive to make a healthy environment in the school. Every deserving teacher must be given appreciation and no bias policy should be allowed.
Once the teachers develop this trust that their expertise is known, valued and not undermined, they are more likely to share their experiences and teaching practices that will help the children achieve academic excellence
Developing a healthy environment which is conducive to studying is of utmost importance for students to learn effectively in school. The school principal should eliminate all the unhealthy and negative influences from the school and work towards achieving excellence.
Improving the infrastructure: Investing in new educational technologies like smart boards, well-equipped laboratories and libraries. These help the children learn their concepts more interactively and engagingly.
As these educational infrastructures in school help the child acquire concepts by having a clear understanding, they develop solid concepts rather than only having rote memory. Arranging financial aid for these advancements is the duty of the school principal and they should be at the forefront of managing things as a leader.
In conclusion, whether it is the teachers, support staff, school infrastructure or student performance and discipline all is dependent on how the leader of the school is excelling in his duties. The role of the school principal in improving school performance is huge and they must turn all the factors influencing student development in their favour.