The featured image is borrowed from jimmycasas.com
This is a really power piece written by Jimmy Casas where he discusses “Leadership…The Biggest Issue in Education?”.
Jimmy talks about how he frequently poses a question to the audience: “What do you believe to be the biggest issue facing us today in public education that is resulting in many of our schools to be labeled as low performing?
He lists those most commonly heard responses and I want you to take a second to do the same.
He talks about how those are all valid responses but in the end, it all comes down to leadership. I could not agree more with him. You probably thought of standardized testing, poverty, lack of resources, state rules, etc. but through all of those, if you have a strong leader guiding the school, you will be successful.
Think about this.
How many of our have worked for a great leader? Do you feel like you dwell on the shortcomings of education when you are being led effectively?
Conversely think of a bad leader that you have worked for. Did the shortcomings of education then impact your growth, abilities, etc?
For me the answer is clear which is why I loved this post so much. When I worked under strong leadership there was always a sense of love, trust, and empowerment in the building. Teachers felt good about being there and students felt loved, respected, and heard. I did not get caught up dwelling on the issues surrounding education because I was confident in my leader and felt that my leader was confident in me.
Working for poor leaders brings a sense of anxiety that is easily felt and seen. You are worried about your job, meeting test scores, your next teacher review, etc because you do not believe in or feel supported by your leader. You do not feel safe and comfortable. If you are feeling this way, what do you think the students are feeling? They certainly are aware of this and can feel it as well.
Leadership is crucial and I believe, the key to a successful classroom, school, and district. I agree with Jimmy that it is a major weakness in education today because far too many are not leading effectively. What do you think?