“Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.”
When we begin our teaching careers, everything is moving very fast. Even though the first few days as an official “teacher” are a whirlwind, we feel like we are prepared to teach. Why wouldn’t we? We have done everything our post-secondary school required us to do to graduate. We have the degree. Just give us a job and a starting date.
Once we get started though, we find out there is more to teaching than having a degree. We realize as we teach multiple classes and sections, there is more to our profession than what we learned in college. We begin to see there is more to teaching than knowing content. More to teaching than telling students what we want them to know. As we continue our first few months of teaching, we begin to feel the frustrations of the profession when everything doesn’t work out as planned.
Everyone goes through it. Great teachers go through this and actually grow from the experiences. Deborah Chang wrote a great post titled 9 Reasons Great Teachers Make Great Leaders and explains “Great teachers are great leaders who never let an obstacle stop them from reaching their goals, they just find a way to creatively sidestep, reimagine, or drill their way through.” Great teachers not only grow from these experiences, they have other traits found in many leaders who excel: perseverance, relationship building, empathy, compassion, drive, the desire to sacrifice and the ability to change to name a few. When it’s all said and done, we realize:
Great Teachers are Great Leaders
Every teacher in our profession leads each day they walk through the doors. Teachers are responsible for their students’ growth. While teachers can’t do it alone and also need great building leadership, their ability to lead transforms students’ lives sometimes despite great district and/or building leadership.
Our profession needs great teachers to become our next great district and building leaders. There are many posts that discuss what school leaders need to be effective and make a difference. Our best teachers have these characteristics. We need them to help transform education and extend their leadership from the classroom to the entire building. As a candidate who is an aspiring administrator, check out the Future Leaders Institute in Columbus, OH in May 2017. It can help you become a better leader help increase the amount of great leaders in our profession.