Thursday, February 23, 2012

Informal "To Do" List to Maintain Focus as an AP

We are currently in the stretch of the school year that is typically the most challenging for administrators, teachers, and students.  This is the time when the second semester is in full-swing, spring is approaching, and consequently, spring break is typically what many are looking forward to.  It's also a challenging time for administration since discussion for next school year has begun, involving budget, staffing, resources, etc. 

Therefore, I put together a short informal "to do" list which helps me stay focused on my day-to-day activities.  If I am able to accomplish four or five of these every day, it maintains my focus and responsibility to being an instructional leader in the school.

These are in no particular order:
  • Meet with a content/grade-level PLC. 

  • Meet with my own administrative PLC.  Radio's off.  Door closed.  We owe it to each other.

  • Pre-conference or Post-Conference with a teacher.  I like having Pre-conferences with all my teachers before Formal Observations in Feb/March, even though they are not required.  I enjoy the crucial conversations and I believe teachers appreciate the time.

  • Formally Observe a teacher.  I am currently observing my BT/Probationary teachers who require a third Formal Observation, which are due by the end of March.  Being able to complete the observation-portion of the evaluation process does provide a sense of accomplishment, which results in less stress.

  • Conduct Walk-Through's in an organized way (i.e., all Algebra I teachers, all World Language teachers, etc.) and provide feedback to all teachers.  Personally, I set a five-teachers per week minimum to provide WT Feedback as one of my goals this year.

  • Handle needed discipline with students.  This is an automatic as an Assistant Principal.

  • Touch-base with students, not necessarily as a result of discipline.  This could result from assessment data, recommendation by a teacher, or a student that has improved from first semester.  A quick, five-minute conversation can go a long way.
I attempt to not look at this as a "check list", as an administrator's schedule must always remain flexible.  Yet, this has been a great way for me to maintain my focus as an instructional leader.

Thanks for reading and follow me via Twitter @CSmithGoBlue


The opinions shared in this blog belong to Craig Smith and do not represent the school or district in which he works.

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