When the military fails - we don't blame the soldiers, blame the generals.
When Governments fail - we don't blame the staff, we blame the representatives.
But when schools fail, who do we blame? The teachers.
Now, obviously this is simplistic. The problem with most failing schools is a variety of things. It includes teachers. It includes teachers. Most of all, however it includes parents. But at the end of the day, a school lives or dies by its leaders. They set the tone. They establish culture. They hold people accountable. They inspire people. They work with students, teachers and families alike to develop a sense of genuine purpose and community.
The Quick and the Ed points to a new study that backs this up. Their take:
Principals affect a range of outcomes, including teacher satisfaction, parents’ perceptions of school quality, and the academic performance of the school. How to ensure a good principal? A principal’s effectiveness depends on their level of experience, their sense of efficacy on certain tasks, and their use of time to manage the range of responsibilities they face. Where are the good principals? Not in poor or poor-performing schools, at least not as a rule. Principals that demonstrate the skills and experience related to effectiveness are less likely to be working in these schools.