How Administrators Can Help All Students Succeed
Even with all that teachers do in the classroom to help their students, most educators understand that the overall tone of any school is set by the administration, and most importantly, the principal. It is the principal’s vision and leadership that sets the bar for teaching standards, discipline, social activities, parental inclusion, student and teacher conduct, and racial and social sensitivity.
School administrators must provide teachers with the training and assistance needed to increase their coping skills, instructional ability, and motivation to address the academic needs of all students.
Here are some ideas for professional development sessions that can set teachers up for success:
- Motivational discussions that address the fact that when culturally diverse students fail, all students are negatively impacted.
- Presentations by European American, African American, and Latino American teachers, as well as teachers from other ethnic groups, who have successfully improved the academic achievement of culturally diverse students who were underachieving, failing, or being disruptive in their classrooms.
- Presentations by parents that address the support, patience, and encouragement their children need and have actually received from teachers.
- Presentations by students who are no longer underachieving because of the efforts of their teachers and who want to thank these teachers and share the strategies that were used to facilitate their academic success.
- Stress management and problem-solving training tailored explicitly for teachers.
- Sharing among teachers about strategies for coping with stress, frustration, and feelings of incompetence that often occur when teaching students who are underachieving and/or academically failing.
- Sharing among teachers about strategies that have been effective with African struggling students who may have poor academic backgrounds, skills, or motivation for certain subjects.
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