Top LYS Tweets – September 3, 2019

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS tweets from the past week when they were first posted.  And if you are on Twitter, you might want to check out the Tweeters who made this week’s list.   Embrace the three unglamorous basics of success. Success begins with…

Misalignment of Expectations

School leaders, here is some prep work you need to do in order to have some strategic, purposeful conversations with individual staff members prior to the school year getting away from us.   Make a list of the students who failed last year’s content specific state accountability tests and/or the district’s end of the year…

Know Your “WHY” – School Version

There is a lot of time and energy being spent on finding your “WHY” as an organization. I’ve thought a lot about it myself, for a number of years.  Here is my current thinking…   The finding your “why” is important for most enterprises. I need a “why” I build, transport and/or sell widgets.  …

In Defense Of Lesson Plans

There is some buzz building among principals to stop requiring teachers to turn in lesson plans. Lots of reasons why people think this is a good idea. Most of them seem rational and logical.   They are all wrong.   For example, I heard a principal say out loud, “I don’t want my teachers spending…

Top LYS Tweets – June 17, 2019

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS tweets from the past week when they were first posted.  And if you are on Twitter, you might want to check out the Tweeters who made this week’s list.   Having gone to school doesn’t make you qualified to debate…

Principal Search

The clock is ticking… Think. Work. Achieve. Your turn… Upcoming Conference Presentations: TASSP Summer Conference; TEPSA Summer Conference;  NAESP Summer Conference; NASSP Summer Conference; Fundamental 5 National Summit (Keynote); RISE Education Conference Follow @LYSNation on Twitter and Lead Your School on Facebook.

Top LYS Tweets – June 10, 2019

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS tweets from the past week when they were first posted.  And if you are on Twitter, you might want to check out the Tweeters who made this week’s list.   “An important step toward curbing the privatization of education will…

Principal Search – Closing Soon

Don’t wait! Interviews start next week!! Think. Work. Achieve. Your turn… Upcoming Conference Presentations: TASSP Summer Conference; TEPSA Summer Conference;  NAESP Summer Conference; NASSP Summer Conference; FCSTAT Summer Conference (Keynote); Fundamental 5 National Summit (Keynote); RISE Education Conference Follow @LYSNation on Twitter and Lead Your School on Facebook.

Top LYS Tweets – June 17, 2019

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS tweets from the past week when they were first posted.  And if you are on Twitter, you might want to check out the Tweeters who made this week’s list.   Having gone to school doesn’t make you qualified to debate…

Principal Search – Texas Elementary School

Do you have what it takes? Think. Work. Achieve. Your turn… Upcoming Conference Presentations: TASSP Summer Conference; TEPSA Summer Conference;  NAESP Summer Conference; NASSP Summer Conference; FCSTAT Summer Conference (Keynote); Fundamental 5 National Summit (Keynote); RISE Education Conference  Follow @LYSNation on Twitter and Lead Your School on Facebook.

Don’t Be The Limiting Factor

I was recently talking to a good, young Principal whose campus is beginning to separate itself from its peers. This is a Title I campus that is now outperforming a number of non-Title I campuses in the area. The campus is buzzing and there is a new feeling of HOPE spreading throughout the staff and…

Managerial Efficiency / Leadership Failure

It should go without saying, but sadly, common sense is not common practice…   If you are in a leadership position and your staff is attending training, you have to attend and participate. At the campus level, this means that the Principal, Assistant Principals and Instructional Coaches attend teacher training.  At the district level, the…

Top LYS Tweets – April 29, 2019

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS tweets from the past week when they were first posted.  And if you are on Twitter, you might want to check out the Tweeters who made this week’s list.   Leaders who stay optimistic, even under intense pressure, radiate the…

Principals, You Really Need To Think About Spring Sports

It’s too late now, but this is the absolute right time to fix this for next year.   Multiple times a week I’m on a secondary campus. And without fail, during the Spring, I’m greeted with the same welcome… “Glad you’re here. Just want to let you know that we have a lot of subs…

Pacing Matters

Every year, I talk to principals and teachers that complain about having too much to teach and state test scores that don’t improve, even though the quality of delivered instruction is seemingly improving.   This can actually be the case.  There are two factors at play with state testing. Has all the required content been…

The Anonymous Critic

The scourge of the field-based leader (in schools, think Assistant Principal and Principal) is the anonymous complaint. It will make the field-based leader question what she is doing and throws weak, rear echelon managers into a tizzy.   Which is exactly the goal of the anonymous complainer.   Lacking both a spine and a legitimate complaint, the…

Teach As I Did Vs. Teach Like I Never Did

Back when I was a principal, the secret to school success was to get most of the teachers teaching like I taught. Not bragging, in my era, I was a decent teacher (as is the case with most principals). But I haven’t been a classroom teacher for over 20 years. Any teacher who today mimicked…

A Principal Asks… Teacher Nests

An Old School LYS Campus Leader asks the following:   SC, Back when I was a teacher, I seem to remember big discussions along the lines of removing “teacher nests.” I want to share some information with my teachers about this very thing. I figured I’ll go straight to the source to help frame a…

Top LYS Tweets – December 10, 2018

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS tweets from the past week when they were first posted.  And if you are on Twitter, you might want to check out the Tweeters who made this week’s list.   Principals have no excuse not to be visible, present and…

The SUPPLEMENTAL School Athletic Program

Note to Readers: I write this as a product and supporter of school athletic programs.   I’m on campuses, across the country, every week. Every week I witness the operations, activities and schedules of secondary schools impacted, adjusted, and circumvented by the needs of the athletic program and coaching staff.  This is done without question. …

A New Principal Asks… Rooms of Chaos

A 1st year LYS Principal asks…   SC,   Like every other new Principal, I have been given the advice by many to, “Not change anything the first year.”   But my school is a MESS. The classrooms are junky and disorganized!  Should I wait when I know kids are surrounded by chaos? Or, should I address…

Top LYS Tweets – November 26, 2018

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS tweets from the past week when they were first posted.  And if you are on Twitter, you might want to check out the Tweeters who made this week’s list.   How you teach, the daily instructional choices you make, either…

A Reader Asks… Proof My Resume

A LYS Assistant Principal requested that I proof her resume prior to applying for a Principalship. The following are the notes I sent back to her.   First, there is nothing overtly wrong with your resume.   There are about as many formulas for the “right” resume as there are job openings, but it all…

PowerWalks Hero Schools (October 2018)

In furtherance of a LYS Nation tradition, we will take this time to tip our caps to the campuses that have embraced the most important step in creating and maintaining an action oriented professional learning community.  These are the campuses that have conducted an extraordinary number of formative classroom observations in a given month.  The…

Why Schools Fail

Are there bad public schools? Absolutely. But schools don’t fail because of bad teachers and bad kids. Schools fail because of leadership failure and/or political design.   Show me a school that is failing, and nine times out of ten it is failing because of one or more of the following reasons:   A Weak…

Balance

A young campus administrator asked me, “How do you find balance in your life? Balance between career, family, relaxation, etc.?”   This is a good question with a harsh answer.   I replied, “Before I answer, I need to know if you want to be great at something?”   He said,“Yes, I want to be…

Overwhelming Change

I work with a lot of principals that have accepted jobs at schools that are struggling.  Without fail, someone at Central Office will give them the unwanted advice of, “Don’t overwhelm the staff with too much change.”   But when the only positive practice occurring on campus is that daily operations resemble school, not overwhelming…

A Reader Writes… In Defense of Coaches

In response to the 8/14/18 post, “A Little Real Talk,” a reader writes:   SC,   You want real talk?  Well, settle in… Your over simplification, and blanket classification, shed a luminous ray of misinformed rhetoric on the topic.  I would urge you to examine, and for that matter go experience what the daily grind…

Trying to Play Politics

Let’s be clear, in apex school leadership positions (Superintendent, some Assistant Superintendent Positions, and now Principal), political considerations are always in play. It is the unavoidable nature of game.  What you have to decide is how you are going to the game.  Before you decide, let me explain how the world works.   There are…

Top LYS Tweets – July 2, 2018

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS tweets from the past week when they were first posted.  And if you are on Twitter, you might want to check out the Tweeters who made this week’s list.   “Regrettably, public education has been underfunded, ignored, under-led, sidestepped, attacked,…
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