October is National Principals’ Month

September 27, 2018

October is National Principals Month. Other than the classroom teacher, who is the most frequently mentioned adult at your child’s school? Of course, it is often

Jim Walter Superintendent Clare Schools

Jim Walter Superintendent Clare Schools

the principal. But few people understand just how complicated the job of a principal is. A help wanted ad for a principal’s job might look something like this:

Wanted: Highly skilled individual with demonstrated administrative abilities to work with hundreds of students, staff and parents. Requirements include:

● Master’s degree with a major in educational administration/curriculum and instruction;
● Successful teaching experience;
● A background in clinical supervision and evaluation;
● Effective communication skills and an ability to work collaboratively with others;
● A strong desire and ability to increase parental involvement and engagement;
● A commitment to staff development and professional growth;
● Ability to manage a large facility, as well as all the people within that facility;
● Strong organizational skills and extensive experience developing and implementing policies and monitoring budgets.

School principals and Deans of students are responsible for virtually every aspect of our students’ education, from the playground to the classroom. First and foremost among these responsibilities is safety…physical and social/emotional.

Running neck and neck with safety is the role of Instructional Leader for the building – that is setting the tone for learning. In addition, our principals must understand and comply with a complex litany of state and federal rules and regulations that govern everything from special education to the handling of chemicals used in science classes.

Principals are responsible for recommending teachers for hire, evaluating performance and promoting teamwork. They encourage parent involvement by providing accurate, timely information about the school, its programs, student achievement, and staff efforts.

The administrators in our district are first rate. We ask a lot of them and they meet any challenge that comes their way with both a great deal of skill and heart. This should not be confused with perfection, but they lead with their heads and hearts.

After all, they have one of the most important leadership job of all; they head the institutions that teach and mold our community’s children.

Administrators hear enough negative comments…and they know when they’ve erred. I know it would mean a lot to them if you take just one moment to stop and say “thank you” the next time you have an occasion to see them in school or better yet, send them a short message giving them kudos for all that they do on a daily basis for our children. They deserve it. They are determined to continue making Clare a great place to live and learn.

Our administrators are: Matt Forsberg, Lisa Burns, Steve Newkirk, Garth Cornwell, Clayton Strobridge, and Tom Pashak.

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