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March's Attribute: Knowledgeable

By PrinciPal Connection posted 02-21-2019 09:23


Featured Attribute

Knowledgeable – Develops teachers’ and staff members’ professional knowledge, skills, and practice through differentiated opportunities for learning and growth, guided by understanding of professional and adult learning and development.


Associated Competency

Teaching and Learning – Develops and supports intellectually rigorous and coherent systems of curriculum, instruction, and assessment to promote each student’s academic success and well-being.


Associated Intelligence

Systems – Individual understanding of the inter-workings and leadership of complex systems within an organization


For Your Reflection

Dr. PJ Caposey, Superintendent, Meridian CUSD #223, Northwest Region

Steven Covey, author of Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, famously stated that you cannot teach what you do not know. As is true with most things Dr. Covey said, this is tremendously insightful and largely true. In working with school leaders, however, I feel this overall belief is extremely limiting for school leaders. There is a perception or belief that a school leader can only add value when they are an expert in something. This is simply not the case.

I love the IPA lists knowledgeable under the associated intelligence: systems intelligence. The role of the school leader is not to know everything. The role of the school leader is to develop a system in which they are intentionally and systematically growing each individual within their organization.

Does that sound overwhelming? It may well be a bit of an intimidating undertaking. The good news is that as teachers we did this already. We planned, executed, tried again, differentiated, and worked passionately in the pursuit of growth for our students. They game has changed a bit, but the tactics need not.

If you take one thing from this, know that creating a system to grow your people is eminently doable. And you already know how – just think of your teachers in the same light of limitless potential that you once viewed your classroom. You got this!


To Keep You Thinking

Are you systematically growing the people within your organization?

  • Is there a defined approach to how you will attempt to improve the performance of each member of your team?
  • Is that approach communicated to a point that each member of your team could tell someone else what it is?
  • Do you review your strategy annually to determine the strengths and weaknesses of what you are doing?
  • Is the attempt to grow people aligned with other key strategies for improvement taking place in your building and district?

Does evaluation fuel your work with individuals and their growth plans throughout the year? If it does not, can we really say that the evaluation process is about growth?

Are you modeling continuous learning? The phrase ‘lead learner’ gets tossed around a lot as educational jargon – but are you truly living that mantra?

How do you determine what professional development to expose your teachers to? Is it based on data or the latest trend or what’s hot?

Are you leveraging social media to continue to your own learning and promote connections for your staff? Do you have your own school or district hash tag (#WeAreMCUSD) to help tell your own story of success?

The trajectory of your career will be defined by three things: how hard you work, who you choose to associate yourself with, and what you are reading. Given that, are you comfortable with where you are heading?

  • Do the professional colleagues you associate with both challenge and support you?
  • Are you often the smartest person in the room – if so, find a new room.