“I know many think this is a “black and white” world. You are either right or wrong. You are in or you are out. You are with me or against me. These are all examples of how a “black and white” world operates. The more time I spend in education, especially in elementary school, I find that it cannot be black and white. There are so many shades or gray. I have to make decisions based on rules and policies, but at the same time I need to consider perspective, motivation and intentions. This makes a principal’s job very difficult. I would love to always rule in a simple black and white world. Unfortunately it isn’t that easy when you have to make difficult decisions that can impact a student and his/her family on a short term or even long term basis.”
This blog post addresses an issue with which school leaders frequently struggle. In my time as an administrator I have seen several similar issues–they are always difficult. The longer I do this job, the less I believe in “no tolerance” policies (call me a softy). I just think that if school leaders are making decisions that are in the best long-term interest of students, they must take into account the “big picture,” carefully examining the circumstances of each incident. What makes this difficult is ensuring equity–making sure that students are treated similarly in similar situations.