A cornerstone of advocacy for our children as 21st century learners and leaders is the emerging role of principals, superintendents, division heads and heads of school as teaching and learning leaders.
There is no question regarding the single most significant impact on student learning: the quality of the classroom teacher (just refer to Robert Marzano’s book Classroom Instruction that Works—and the rich body of research that supports it or John Bransford and the National Research Council's How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience and School).
Who is fundamentally responsible for that quality? School administrators. And how do they provide it?
By keeping up with cutting edge research from across disciplines and throughout the world on teaching and learning.
By cultivating school cultures in which teachers leverage one another’s expertise (e.g., by systematically visiting one another’s classrooms and providing feedback and by engaging in self-selected professional study groups) as the rich resource it is.
By providing teachers with opportunities to participate in world-class professional development opportunities through local as well as national organizations, everything from the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics to the National Association of Independent Schools to the International Reading Association.
School administrators have the fundamental and profound responsibility of supporting the lifelong learning of those who teach our children. To provide this support, school administrators must themselves be lifelong learners who participate in the larger, global conversation about teaching and learning in the 21st century. Parents should expect—and administrators should provide—nothing less.
2 weeks ago