School of Thought

Why Getting Mugged by a Blockhead is a Good Thing for Teacher Retention

Guest post by Melissa D. Hensley

Central High School, an 800-student school in rural Woodstock, VA, has felt the effects of the national teacher shortage this year. We replaced a third of our staff as teachers left for higher paying jobs or relocated to take positions closer to their family. This high turnover rate alarmed us and caused our staff to discuss the impact of teacher turnover and develop a teacher-led strategic plan to increase retention. These efforts have led to a renewed commitment from our teachers to support each other and strengthen our school community.  (more…)

Advocacy Update

National Principals Month Is Just Two Weeks Away!

Two weeks from today marks the beginning of 2017’s National Principals Month. October is a time for organizations, teachers, students, parents, legislators, and the community to celebrate the great work of principals across the country. NASSP, the National Association of Elementary School Principals, and the American Federation of School Administrators have a number of activities planned, including congressional resolutions recognizing the celebration; principal shadowing visits; a video contest that gives students the opportunity to thank principals for all of their hard work; and much more. (more…)

Get Ready for National Principals Month

Next to classroom instruction, the role of an effective school leader is crucial to the success of a school and its students. That’s why NASSP, the National Association of Elementary School Principals, and the American Federation of School Administrators have designated October as National Principals Month to honor principals nationwide. (more…)

Four Mindsets to LEAP Into Innovation 

Guest post by Bill Ziegler

How can principals lead learning in a way where students want to run to school rather than away from it? This challenge can be daunting, but it’s one that requires our full focus as we strive to design schools where students see a practical and relevant connection, creativity being nurtured, and real-world problems being solved. This requires school leaders to think differently, to innovate, and to lead with courage.  (more…)

The Importance of Staff “Floor Time” and Immersive School Leadership

Guest post by Chris Koch

As a parent of three young girls, I was introduced long ago to the concept of “floor time,” or getting down on the floor and playing with your kids. Through the years, I have been a student in my daughters’ classrooms, a customer at their homemade arts and crafts store, and a judge in a spontaneous dance off. Quality floor time is fun and helps me build deeper relationships with my daughters. It means so much more to my kids than just sitting on the couch and casually watching them play. (more…)

Advocacy Update

The 2018 Advocacy Conference Has Been Announced!

Have you ever wondered how you can serve your students beyond your school walls? Let us show you how at the 2018 Advocacy Conference! At this conference, school leaders will hear directly from some of the nation’s leading education thought leaders on the current policies shaping education in America. You will also have a chance to discuss these policies directly with your members of Congress and their staff on Capitol Hill. Best of all, registration for the conference is free! (more…)

What an NFL Coach Can Teach High School Administrators

Guest post by Jay R. Townsend

What do NFL coaches and high school administrators have in common? Certainly not the pay or the publicity. But they both build people and teams. And you can learn a lot about how to build a winning school team from former NFL head coach Tony Dungy. I have been a huge fan of Dungy’s leadership style, and the lessons that I have learned from his book The Mentor Leader have helped me design a strong playbook for my students and staff. (more…)

Designing an After-School Program to Maximize Student Achievement

Guest post by Abbey Duggins

Saluda High School (SHS) works hard to ensure that all of our 600 students in rural South Carolina receive a high-quality education and possess the world-class knowledge and skills described in the Profile of the South Carolina Graduate. To accomplish this goal, we’ve expanded our academic programing so that all of our students—from the academically motivated to our most at risk—can access appropriate learning experiences that will help them realize their full potential.  (more…)

Making Collaboration Work

What do principals need to do their jobs more effectively? This is a question school administrators struggle with on a daily basis. The truth is that the best people to answer that question are the school administrators themselves. After all, they know their schools best and they know the unique nuances that may affect any new initiative. So, why not ask principals to create the tools they need to make their jobs easier? (more…)

Advocacy Update

Don’t Miss Today’s Webinar on Investing in Educators to Support Student Success

At 2:00 p.m. today, NASSP will be co-hosting a webinar with several other national education organizations titled, “How Investing in Teacher and Leader Professional Development Can Support Student Success.” During this webinar, researchers will share findings from a new review on professional development that improves students’ academic outcomes. (more…)