As a public charter school coach and consultant the question I get most often is, how do we keep our board meetings on track? The answer is the pretty simple. Focus on what is most important. I have learned the hard way, as a consultant and a board chair that if you do not prepare on the front end you will be repairing on the back end. One of the keys to facilitating a purposeful board meeting begins with the setting of an effective board agenda.
The agenda is a collaborative process set by the head of the school and the board chair.
The development of the next months agenda begins at the end of the previous board meeting. At At the close of the meeting the board chair should:
Can you squeeze another administrator out of your budget?
Next year’s budget is probably already weighing heavily on your mind. If you are a charter school in its first few years, you are probably expecting higher enrollment, and therefore, will need more teachers as well. But one question that is not so easy to answer, and has a big impact is: How many administrators is the right number for your school?
At first glance, I am sure that everyone out there is thinking – Well, we could use more than we have! There is no doubt that the school administrators you have are worked to their maximum capacity already. I can’t think of a school out there that didn’t wish they had just one more AP, just one more Dean, just one more Curriculum Specialist. We have to balance that idea with a budget that leads to the financial solvency of the school, and the administrators are most likely the highest paid members of your staff. They might even be paid...
Establishing a school improvement plan (SIP) is the most important first step to improving your school. Without this plan it is nearly impossible to attain success. As John Wooten, the former UCLA basketball coach said, “Failure to Prepare is Preparing to Fail.”
Additionally, Yogi Berra, the former Yankee baseball player famous for his malapropisms said, “If you don’t know where you’re going, you might wind up somewhere else.” So if your school does not have a SIP (or there is one gathering dust on a shelf, not updated and being used to guide your school in meeting important goals) your school is not performing as well as it could!
The purpose of school improvement planning is to create a map or guide that will improve the quality of teaching and learning in the school resulting in more student success in core subject areas. The following steps to building a functional SIP help you to identify areas to be improved (What), How they will...
Learning how to listen is a vital step in becoming an effective leader. According to research conducted by Personality Insights, the average executive spends two hours talking each day but eight hours listening. After spending two hours at home with my five year old son, I estimate that the average stay-at-home parent spends 12 to 16 hours a day listening!!! Well… at least one of the five levels of listening (more about this to come).
Whether we realize it or not, whether we are intentionally engaged or not, we are always listening. Sometimes we are listening to new ideas, listening to a story, to music, to the background noise of a television, or in a true conversation where we are sharing our thoughts and conveying important information. I don’t know about you, but after a day of listening and communicating at any level, my brain is exhausted.
According to relationship and leadership DISC expert Dr. Robert Rohm, there are six hidden components to every...
“Those who think they lead and have no one who follow are merely taking a walk.” – John Maxwell
This leadership proverb has shaped the way I have viewed leadership since the first time I read it almost four years ago.
It defines my daily actions, communications, decision-making and most importantly, how I observe the leaders and teams I am so humbled to coach and work alongside. I have learned the hard way that the true measure of leadership is influence, nothing more and nothing less.
Think about those who have influence over you. Why do you follow them? It is most likely not because of power or position. It is because of how they make you feel – their character, their ability to build relationships, communicate, and provide a clear vision.
True power is the influence and ability to motivate others to believe in and support your vision. I remember how my first 90 days as a school principal completely...
If you operate a charter school in North Carolina, it is imperative to dedicate extra time and resources to counting students and ensuring accurate attendance records during the first twenty days of the school year. After all, the majority of your funding for the entire school year is based on your 20-day Average Daily Membership (ADM). Are you sure that you know how to calculate your ADM? This guide will help clarify the definition of ADM and help you make sure your counting, counts.
The uncertainty in calculating ADM surrounds student absences. In the clearest of terms, ABSENCES HAVE NO IMPACT ON ADM after a student has attended their first day of the school year. A student’s ADM count starts on the first day of the school year that the student physically attends school. Their count continues, regardless of brief absences, and only stops if they enroll at another school, or if they are absent for 10 consecutive days.
In order to illustrate this, see...