You will be glad to know that you are going to have an endless supply of challenges or problems to solve.
That is what your job is all about.
This is what will “light your fire”!
Why Is This Exciting?
Teaching provides an constant stream of problems to solve and decisions that must be made within the classroom. The school administrator, like teachers, faces the same challenge of solving problems and making decisions, but his or her decisions can effect everyone in the school community.
This is truly exciting because, as the administrator, you have the ability to make people’s lives better! You set the tone for the entire school! You can role model “how to handle problems!”
You have the unique opportunity to show everyone in the building how to stay calm and make decisions that are the right ones!
Your Mind Set
How you approach your challenges will determine how much you will likeyour job!
If you see every challenge as a negative experience, your health will suffer.You need to see each and every challenge as an opportunity to improve a situation.
Yes, you can do this and enjoy doing it!
You want to LOVE your job!
What To Expect?
Well, this list will only scratch the surface. Of course, you have more to add from your experiences, but this will be a start.
Let’s see what some of the challenges are that you might face:
A parent who is unhappy over class placement
A teacher who is unhappy over grade assignment
A student who is unhappy over the fact that his or her friends are in the other class
A teacher who is unhappy due to the fact that he or she has to move to a different classroom
Facing The Challenge!
REMEMBER …your mind set is critical as you deal with a hostile person.
You must NOT buy into their anger.
You need to listen, listen and listen some more.
Acknowledge their anger by stating you can see they are upset. Ask them to come into your office to provide more privacy. Do not sit behind your desk. Sit with them as if they were angry students coming to tell you about some horrible thing that happened on the playground.
Let the person speak for as long as he or she needs to get everything out. Yes, it might mean that you have to listen to harsh things, distasteful language and possibly even some insults. Don’t interrupt, just let them speak.
When it sounds like they have finished, try to recap what it is that is upsetting them by saying, “Let me see if I have this right…” (If you don’t have it right, don’t worry, they will tell you!!!!)
Ask if they mind if you write down some of the pertinent details so that you don’t overlook anything while you are trying to sort out the situation.
Remember, they only want what they think is best for their child. Assure them that you understand and that is what you also want for their child.
Assure them that you will look into the situation and that you will get back to them ASAP.
Check into the situation and make sure you DO get back to them ASAP.
Knowing You Are Doing The Right Thing
This is the BEST part about being the school leader, the administer in charge of the school! You will know with certainty that you are making the RIGHTdecisions if you know you are making decisions based on what is right for the students!
Keep the decision making out of the realm of “personal” needs or wants.
Always keep it about the students!
You will be able to sleep at night knowing you based your decision on what is best for the students.
Will some decisions be challenging? You bet they will be challenging, but you must stay firm on doing what is right for the students.
Dealing With Mental Illness on Staff
One of the most challenging and frustrating things you will face, as an administrator, is dealing with mentally unwell staff members. If you have not already encountered that, please understand that it is only a matter of time before you do.
Mental illness comes in many forms.
You might have a person on staff who is addicted to alcohol or gambling. You could have a person on staff who has been diagnosed as bi-polar or who is depressed. You could have a staff member who has narcissistic behaviors or passive aggressive behaviors. You will have people who are OCD and ADD on staff and in your student population.
Dealing with special needs students is much easier than dealing with special needs staff members!
There is very little support for you as you deal with mental illness on your staff.
First of all, you will NOT be given any indication that anyone on your staff is unwell. You will just learn that as you begin working with your people.
When you realize that you are dealing with someone who is not well, keeping accurate, written records of the unusual behavior will be necessary. Keep track of dates, times and events leading up to and following the unusual behaviors.
Speak with your supervisor about your concerns BEFORE speaking with your staff member. Find out what the process is in your district for dealing with unwell staff members. Follow those steps exactly as outlined. Keep your supervisor advised of the situation so you are not dealing with this on your own!
Email Me to “chat” . I will get back to you PRONTO!