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Administration, Education, Leadership

Administrators in the Classroom?

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(photo by Leland Francisco – via Flickr)

I am considering the possibility of developing and teaching a leadership class for junior high school students.  It would be an elective class and focus on building the leadership skills of students on our campus.  For our school, it would be important to select a diverse group of students, with the demographics of the class reflecting those of our school.  My vision is that this class will include students who some would consider “at-risk”, but who possess the potential to be leaders at our school and within our community.

Again, I am looking for some feedback from colleagues:

  • Do you teach a leadership class, and if so, what do you cover?
  • Are there school administrators teaching?  What advice do you have about taking on a teaching role?
  • Any suggestions for resources and materials would be GREATLY appreciated.

If you are on Twitter and don’t mind retweeting this article, it would be greatly appreciated – the more input the better.  Thank you for your help!


About azjd

Junior high principal by day, aspiring difference maker, and Jedi in my own mind. Act justly. Love mercy. Walk humbly.


4 thoughts on “Administrators in the Classroom?

  1. I had a wonderful GT Coordinator in my JH principal position who was an advisor for a student leadership group. She allowed me to step in and teach about leadership on occasion, and I really enjoyed the chance to teach – and the positive impact that could make in the building. My teaching was limited to this group and to the student council leaders. I really struggle with dedicating an hour a day to teaching students when at the core, I have felt the principalship is about getting the other adults (teachers, coaches, staff) to teach and lead students. One can argue that teaching students builds rapport and trust with staff – and if that is true – then it may be a great vehicle. But I still believe, at the core, the measure of an excellent principal is whether s/he can move the adults to best serve kids. We should be able to assume principals were first great teachers of students, and an occasional stint with student groups was enough for me to model that for teachers. Resources – I have great passion for the free materials Jim Collins puts out on his website for Good to Great. It’s bigger than leadership and forces great reflection. Good luck Jeff!!

    Posted by Chris Lindholm | September 13, 2010, 1:16 pm
  2. Hello Jeff. Great post!I have been a vice principal and principal in K-9 schools for 13 years, and for the vast majority of those years I have taught at least once course, often a core Math class instead of an option course. I found two benefits from teaching core classes; one benefit is the deep connection I was able to develop with that group of students. Those relationships were often very helpful to my administrative role. The second benefit is that it kept me intimately connected to the classroom and I feel helped my work with the teachers in my school as we focused on instruction. A third benefit was that it was a great personal help in allowing me to refresh and focus less on administration and more on teaching for an hour or so a day.I think your idea of a JH leadership class is an excellent idea. We have had a JH leadership course in all of the schools I have taught in, and it can be a very effective tool in supporting the school as well as the personal development of the students who take it.My only caution is that the vision of the leadership class needs to be carefully defined. It will be less effective for the kids’ development if it is a service class where they do jobs around the school. If it is initially described/defined as a personal growth class, the benefit will be less to the school and more for the kids themselves.The best resources I’ve found are the Covey for Teens materials and the binder of plans/resources from the Canadian Association of Student Activity Advisors. A link to their site is below, along with another link that you may find interesting from a gentleman who focused his MA on the topic.http://www.casaaleadership.ca/http://davidtruss.com/files/datruss-student-leadership-paper.pdfHave fun!Cheers@acmcdonaldgp

    Posted by Alexander (Sandy) McDonald | September 13, 2010, 1:51 pm
  3. I would highly recommend the materials and training from the people at Top 20 Teens. I have used their materials in the classroom and I have seen kids really connect with and begin to apply the information. You can find their info at: http://www.top20training.com/

    Posted by mischa32 | September 13, 2010, 6:02 pm
  4. Thanks to everyone for your thoughtful responses, advice and resources. All are greatly appreciated. I will keep you posted.

    Posted by Jeff Delp | September 14, 2010, 2:39 am

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Jeff Delp

Junior high principal by day, sports enthusiast, technology fanatic and jedi in my own mind. Striving to be a difference maker!
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