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Sep 11, 2019

Dear School Administrator: The Teacher/Principal Disconnect

by Susan Strasser

Heading into a new school year, a teacher shares her hopes for improved communication in an open letter to school principals and administrators.   Dear School Administrator, A simple online search for “teacher-principal relationship” offers a quick look at the many critical topics that impact this relationship: Common Core, educational reforms proposals in political campaigns, charter schools… The list goes on. When I checked in with a colleague returning to the classroom this fall, though, there was only one critical topic: A request for your support. To help keep this simple, here are a few suggestions to help kick off this new school year by bridging the gap between teachers and administrators.   Tip #1: Perfect Attendance We ask this of our students, and it seems fair to ask this of administrators, too. After all, we teachers are working very hard in our classrooms to create a unified, creative learning environment for our students. Kids who are off task, be it disrespectful or disruptive too often, are given many warnings, parent contacts, and perhaps even partial lunch detentions. Barring any emergencies, can you be at weekly student concerns meetings? As you know, the academic and behavioral data presented along with teacher anecdotes, allows for important discussions that identify possible patterns and challenges that may present themselves is invaluable. For me, having this discussion with you helps me isolate variables such as whether this is a singular subject issue or if the student is demonstrating behavioral and/or anecdotal patterns across multiple […]

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