On Friday we will release the 50th episode of The Assistant Principal Podcast! To celebrate, we have chosen five of our favorite moments to share with you this week. Part of what makes these moments powerful is that they transcend education and are applicable to all leaders. We hope you enjoy the series!
E21 Meeting the needs of new teachers with Mara Buskey, Leah Dowling and Kemberly Merritt
MVP: Be more direct in giving feedback and helping people grow their skills.
We asked first year teachers Leah Dowling and Kemberly Merritt about what kind of support they needed from their assistant principals:
“The assistant principal, he held my hand and walked me step-by-step, this is how you do this… he cheered me on... and held my hand to make sure I got it. If teachers that came in could have that kind of support of someone that is going to give them that step-by-step guidance, it would give them a more secure feeling.” (Kemberly)
“When they see us struggling in an area, they need to say, ‘here’s some resources, here’s some strategies’… there were times this school year that I didn’t realize I could have been doing better until February or March, wishing that I had known that earlier.” (Leah)
We often get confused and think that directive coaching is only for low performers, but that isn’t the case. People want feedback! They want critical feedback! More importantly, they want that feedback to be followed up with robust and detailed support and training. Directive coaching is good coaching. Being directive can be reassuring, especially when everything is new.