Wednesday, July 20, 2005

"The better administrators are those who remember their teaching roles."

Thus speaks Brian Dowd Mosher, the new principal of St Rita's School. The Dundalk Eagle of Dundlalk, MD has the story here. He succeeds a nun that held the post for 23 years. The schoo faces challenges:
Due to low enrollment numbers, the school has faced closure in the past few years. Mosher said attendence right now is about 160, with a goal of 170.

"Enrollment is absolutely a concern throughout the archdiocese," he said. "I would say it's more of a concern here than at my previous Catholic schools."

Not surprisingly, Mosher has faith that the dedicated staff and parents will keep St. Rita's around for a while to come.

"The faculty and families who are so dedicated to this school and this community have kept this school open longer than some may have expected," he said.
I'm always grateful when I hear school administrators value teachers. I hope Mr. Mosher believes what he says, because he's right. The best principals--even the best department chairs--remember their lives as teachers. They understand that they work best when they teach their teachers and mentor them to greatness. They succeed when they create the conditions that allow their teachers and students to succeed.

Kicking ass and taking names may feel great. It may even move the recalcitrants out of the way. However, it doesn't provide success for the administrators that use it. Do you want to motivate your teachers? Inspire them. Get them whatever they need. Have them remember why they got into the profession in the first place. Share the vision with them and then empower them to work together with you to achieve it. These are the strategies that today's successful Principals use. They provide accountability because teachers take their responsibility seriously. Principals that trust their teachers understand just how seriously their teachers do take it!

May Mr. Mosher have every blessing of God so that he succeeds in his tenure as St. Rita's principal. May he live by the words he speaks today.