Each school inevitably gets very busy in the final weeks before students go home. This includes finishing standardized testing, teacher and staff appraisals, finalizing up current budget and finishing the framework for next year’s budget, hiring staff (and saying goodbye to current staff leaving), completing transition documents for incoming and outgoing students……. As you can see, the end of a school year gets very busy and time is not in enough supply. The tasks listed above did not even include the typical school day happenings including building relationships and culture, conducting walk throughs and supporting staff, and encouraging students in their efforts as they develop into learners in a rapidly changing world. With all of this work, the question becomes “how do we make it through the busiest times” as both internal and external forces are putting too many demands upon an already busy schedule.
From my perspective, and through reflection and previous blog work, the most effective way for me is to “focus on the things that I can control”. As a leader, we must prioritize our work and know what must be done now and what can wait (and what may not get done and that is ok). This prioritization allows leaders to focus on things they can control and truly focus on things that can make a difference in school…..supporting its people.
When we think of “focusing on things we can control” that specifically includes the following:
- Put others first and focus on the best in people
- Empower others to help make a difference
- Celebrate the successes of our work and embrace our failures
- Trust the people you work with….you hired them for a good reason – they are leaders too.
- Communicate often with short, clear messaging
- Make decisions on what is best for kids
When summer starts, there will be more time for some of the tasks that you put off that still must be done. There will also be important time for reflection time for yourself and the importance of finding time to rest-relax-energize for the work in the upcoming year. However, if we do not focus on things that we can only control, our work will not be a high quality that supports the most important parts of our school – its people.
I look forward to hearing from you about your thoughts related to how “what you focus on” during the busy times in your role to remain effective. Comment below or reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org