Tips for School & District Administrators

Instructional Inquiry for School Leaders

By The SHARE Team February 19, 2020

The University of Washington Center for Educational Leadership (CEL) developed an instructional leadership inquiry cycle tool that helps principal supervisors and principals collaboratively engage in a continuous process of instructional improvement and analysis. The inquiry tool directly correlates to CEL’s 5D instructional framework and rubric, making the process of instructional development easy and cohesive. Instructional… Read More

There’s never enough time to get everything done during PD, but team-building and supporting your staff’s social-emotional needs builds a strong school culture and increases teacher efficacy. Here are some quick, fun professional development activities for teachers that will break the ice! Step to the Line Have your staff stand in two lines facing each… Read More

Wow-Factor Schools: 8 Ways to Build an Awesome School Culture

By Jennifer Gunn February 18, 2020

Some schools have such a positive school culture that you can see and feel it as soon as you enter the building. It’s evident on the walls, in the students and staff, and in every classroom you visit. How can school leaders foster such a rich and positive school climate? It starts by first understanding… Read More

Switching from teacher to administrator schooled me in the immense complexities of leadership at both the school and district level. It also taught me to share the load. In the summers of my teaching years, I always liked to head into school to get my classroom ready for the coming school year. By mid-August, there… Read More

Innovation fatigue is something teachers and administrators know well. Every year there are new programs, standards, and expectations. We are always reinventing the wheel and have to learn a new system, take on a new responsibility, or embrace a new philosophy. However, change that benefits our students is worth doing—and doing well. Here are some… Read More

Efficacy—or a teacher’s level of confidence about their ability—can greatly depend on past experiences or on their current school culture. A bad classroom experience or negative work environment, for example, can quickly sour a teacher’s confidence. Conversely, witnessing student growth and working in a collaborative environment can boost a teacher’s belief in their ability and… Read More

The school leader’s office door is always open — often for complaints. When the door is wide open to negativity, it can impact school culture and weigh everyone down. But it’s possible to start building a positive and resilient school culture starting in those everyday office visits. Through the art of mindful listening, you can… Read More

So there I am, a finalist for a vice-principal position, sitting in the superintendent’s office. I’ve run the gauntlet of the selection process and now I’m in the final interview. This will make or break me. I’m beyond nervous. Would the superintendent ask me about teacher observations? What about parent communication? Perhaps some school finance?… Read More

6 Ways to Engage Parents This Fall

By Jennifer Gunn August 23, 2019

A new school year is an opportune time to launch a new parent and family outreach campaign. Here are six things to keep in mind to make long-lasting connections that will last all year. Get everyone on the same page As the new year begins, formalize your staff’s outlook and plan for family engagement. “To… Read More

What Teachers Wish School Leaders Knew

By Jennifer Gunn August 15, 2019

At times, there can be a disconnect between school leadership and classroom teachers. That disconnect can sometimes feel like a chasm, widening each year, and make it difficult for teachers and leaders to connect, move the work forward, or even get along. Here are some insights from educators on what teachers wish leaders understood.  Remember… Read More

School time is precious and usually rather inflexible, but some schools are adding a little more flexibility and personalization into their learning time to the benefit of students. The concept is called “flex time” or “W.I.N. Time” which stands for “What I Need Time.”  Getting flexible about learning time Most schools are pretty locked into… Read More

Reimagining Your School as a Community Center

By Jennifer Gunn July 11, 2019

Imagine a school that worked together with the community to serve all students and their families, including academics and beyond. Believe it or not, such schools exist and it just might be possible for your school to benefit from a community model. The Community School According to the Coalition for Community Schools, a community school… Read More

Matching Edtech with Student Learning Needs

By Jennifer Gunn July 9, 2019

When it comes to students and edtech, one size does not fit all. Buying a product for whole-school use may not be the best plan. Here’s a look at how schools can match edtech products to specific learning needs and goals and help students succeed. Every learner is unique In considering any edtech tool, it’s… Read More

Ensuring Ed Tech Doesn’t Increase Inequity

By Jennifer Gunn July 2, 2019

Technology is here to stay and its presence within education settings is rapidly expanding. This presence — or its absence — could be perpetuating inequity in our schools in not-so-obvious ways. Here’s a look at what we need to be aware of as technology expands its reach in education.  The hidden biases in ed tech… Read More

The research is clear. Community engagement can be a driving force for student success. “Parents, families, educators, and communities — there’s no better partnership to assure that all students PreK through high school — have the support and resources they need to succeed in school and in life,” says former National Education Association President Dennis… Read More