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…

I Have A Big Problem With Hypocrites

A half kudo to the Waco Independent School District School Board.   They recently accepted the resignation, with a partial contract buy-out, of their Superintendent.  The buy-out is why I’m subtracting half of the kudo.   The Superintendent was busted with pot in his car during a routine traffic stop. Once busted, the Superintendent began…

Top LYS Tweets – September 24, 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.   Public school administrators and school board members ARE NOT prohibited…

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…

The Protect Our Children Initiative – Part 12, Campus Security

The following is a continuation of our ongoing focus and discussion on gun violence at schools.  This post is written by a long time LYSer.   I have read a lot of ideas over the past few weeks in the wake of more school shootings.  I have found most of these ideas lacking.  But, considering the people offering…

Take a Team You Trust

You are about to get the new apex operational leadership position (Principal or Superintendent).  You will be asked what you need to be successful.  Tell whoever asks that question that you need three people.   You will need three people that know how you work, you can rely on, will spread your message, are loyal…

Don’t Waste Your Honeymoon

A bunch of you are going to get a promotion over the summer: Teacher to Assistant Principal; Assistant Principal to Principal; Principal to Assistant Superintendent; Assistant Superintendent to Superintendent.   When you get that promotion, some well-meaning peer or mentor is going to give you some real bad advice.  They are going to tell you…

Top LYS Tweets from the Week of October 8, 2017

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS Tweets from the week of October 8, 2017 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. 1. Congratulations to LYSer, Dr. Doug Killian on…

A Superintendent Writes… The Foundation Trinity

A LYS Superintendent shares the following: SC, I was recently listening to a principal discuss The Foundation Trinity with a group of teachers during professional development.  The principal concluded that the success of the campus was due to implementation of The Foundation Trinity. My response… “Sort of.” Certainly, The Foundation Trinity is an excellent system,…

7 for 7! Congratulations to Cleveland Middle School and Cleveland ISD

Pop open the bottles of bubbly! The schools of Cleveland ISD have made tremendous gains, with Cleveland Middle School (CISD) earning all 7 academic distinctions they were eligible for during the 2016/2017 school year!  Below are the highlights from the Houston Chronicle article by Vanesa Brashier (8/21/17). … Accountability ratings released by the Texas Education Agency…

A Superintendent Writes… The Homemade Walk-thru System – Part 1

In response to the 5/23/2017 post, “The Homemade Walk-thru System,” an old school LYS Superintendent writes: SC, I’m still laughing after reading your post today.  It’s funny on two different levels. 1. People asking you to critique their systems, not knowing that you are one of the grandfathers of formative observations systems.  Kind of like…

A Superintendent Writes… Playing Against a Stacked Deck

A LYS Superintendent writes the following: SC, I’ve been thinking about this for a while and admit that I don’t have the answer. It is clear from state testing data that our students do better every year they are out of 3rd grade.  I am confining this discussion to reading but that trend is true…

Top LYS Tweets From the Week of November 27, 2016

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS Tweets from the week of November 27, 2016 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. 1. “Be the reason that someone believes in…

A Superintendent Writes… How Well Meaning Politicians Hurt Students – Part 1

In response to the 11/15/16 post, “How Well Meaning Politicians Hurt Students,” a LYS Superintendent writes: SC, I found today’s post not profound, but interesting.  I like interesting. The effects described would be hard to prove but seem intuitively obvious. An interesting research project would be to determine the effects of rapidly changing government policy…

A Superintendent Writes… How Well Meaning Politicians Hurt Students

A LYS Superintendent shares the following: LYS Nation, I was recently talking to educators about learners with special needs.  Be it learning disabilities or learning a second language, our discussion led us to consider our school’s impact on learners with special needs. We concluded that consistency was very important.  The school should have a consistent…

Lead From the Front

The following is a note that a LYS Superintendent sent to his Principals just two weeks into this new school year.  Campus Leaders and Colleagues: Here are the most up-to-date results of PowerWalks, by building, to this point so far: The Elementary School is leading the way with 177 PowerWalks. The Middle School is in…

Enemies to Instruction

We just wrapped up the two-day TASSP/LYS Leadership Academy, a fantastic experience with almost 250 campus-based school leaders participating and networking. One of the presenters was the Maverick Superintendent of Wyoming and LYSer, Fletcher Turcato.  In his presentation he talked about Enemies of Instruction. His premise, which I agree with, is that we allow too…

Top LYS Tweets From the Week of August 28, 2016

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS Tweets from the week of August 28, 2016 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. 1. Congratulations to LYSer, Dr. Bake Baron! He…

Top LYS Tweets From the Week of July 10, 2016

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS Tweets from the week of July 10, 2016 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. 1. Congratulations to LYSer, Dewitt Smith! He is…

Top LYS Tweets From the Week of July 3, 2016

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS Tweets from the week of July 3, 2016 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. 1. Congratulations to LYSer, Chane Rascoe! He is…

Top LYS Tweets From the Week of June 19, 2016

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS Tweets from the week of June 19, 2016 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. 1. Congratulations to LYSer, Dr. Darin Jolly! He…

Does Class Size Matter

School board members and superintendents often ask me my opinion on class size.  I have read the research and understand the theory behind the class size argument, but my answer is much more practical and is based on the situation. Situation 1 (The Small School): In most small schools, class size really isn’t an issue.…

A Superintendent Shares… The Problem is Us.

A LYS Superintendent shares the following: LYS Nation, I recently moved to a new district, to serve as the new Superintentent.  It was soon brought to my attention by coaching staff that my son was not going along with the athletic program.  Of course I spoke with my son, told him it was important for…

Top LYS Tweets From the Week of June 12, 2016

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS Tweets from the week of June 12, 2016 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. 1. Not sure how many times it needs…

Top LYS Tweets From the Week of June 5, 2016

If you are not following @LYSNation on Twitter, then you missed the Top 10 LYS Tweets from the week of June 5, 2016 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. 1. Congratulations to LYSer, John Schumacher! He is…

A Superintendent Shares… Wanna Be An Adnimistrator

An old school LYSer and Superintendent shares the following. LYS Nation, I received an email today from a candidate for an assistant principal opening in my school district.  I thought you would enjoy my response: Dear Mr. Superintendent, My name is (MASKED).  I am currently teaching Spanish at (MASKED) High School.  This is my third…

A Superintendent Writes… Schools are Built for Adults – Part 1

In response to the 5/18/2016 and 5/20/2016 posts, “Schools are Built for Adults – Case 1,” and “Schools are Built for Adults – Case 2,” an old school LYS Superintendent writes: SC, You are absolutely right – schools are built for adults. My question: What would a school look like that was built for students?…

A Superintendent Writes… Elections have Repercussions

An old school LYS Superintendent shares: LYS Nation, As a superintendent, obviously, the Texas Supreme Court’s ruling on school finance disappoints me.  I admire the deference to the legislature at some level, but not at this level. To say that a judicial branch should not override the elected representative branch makes perfect sense at the…

A Superintendent Continues… Red Shirt Your Freshmen – Part 2

In response to the 5/11/12 post, “Red Shirt Your Freshmen – Part 1” the LYS Superintendent continues: SC, … Granted. But for some districts (like the one I just joined) this is a high stakes chess game.  When you are one of the districts at the bottom of performance rankings, saving the King is all…

A Superintendent Writes… Red Shirt Your Freshmen – Part 1

In response to the 4/29/16 post, “HS Accountability – Red Shirt Your Freshmen” a LYS Superintendent writes: SC, Something to consider and a possible warning. When restructuring the order of high school tested subjects, you must keep in mind that rearrangement will mean some tests will not be given for a year or two.  That’s…
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