Formerly a teacher, now an administrator-in-training, Chris Canter blogs about his yearlong assistant principal internship at Fulton County Public Schools in Atlanta, Ga. Canter was a 2010 ASCD OYEA honoree.
It has been quite an amazing year of learning and fun. As I think about preparing future education leaders, these are my top 10 suggestions for them, as a result of my experiences.
- Be flexible and don’t sweat it when your plans fall through; most of what you plan to do during the day will not get done.
- Celebrate even the most minor of successes; sometimes that’s all you have.
- Remember that your position is all about people; don’t lose your human touch.
- Admit when you make a mistake.
- Tears and screaming will be a big part of the first days of school, and it’s ok (as long the tears and screaming aren’t from you).
- Let your haters be your motivators; view your obstacles as challenges and opportunities to rise to a higher level.
- Make time for yourself and your family; your job is a part of your life, but only a part.
- Love the kids you work with; they are each someone’s child, and eventually, the next generation of world citizens.
- Use your sick and vacation days strategically. Even the best leaders needs a break.
- Don’t forget to have fun along the way; 190 days is a very short time for you, but it is the beginning of a lifetime for the students you will touch.
What suggestions do you have for new leaders?