A Sobering Statistic to Consider:
More than 50% of public school teachers are considering leaving the profession sooner than they originally planned, according to a survey by the National Education Association.
We’re pretty sure that isn’t because of rising teacher salaries and incentives or lower cost of living, either.
What’s even more disconcerting is that these percentages are even higher among Black and Hispanic/ Latino teachers, a group already underrepresented in America’s public schools.
It’s Not Just Teachers Who Are Leaving
A critical factor in the success of any charter school system is a healthy and committed administration. According to the research above, almost 18% of principals nationwide leave their positions every year. While some move to other schools, this is still an unacceptable retention rate.
Considering the importance of these leadership roles – it’s becoming increasingly crucial for educational leadership to cultivate working environments that create lasting careers rather than temporary jobs.
To understand this turnover rate, it’s necessary to know how to create an environment for charter school district leaders to thrive. Below, we’ll look at three easy ways to cultivate a career environment that can help any school system.
- Encouraging open lines of communication
- Emphasizing team-building for your educational organization
- Using outside services to find top talent for your charter school district or education nonprofit
Using these tips, any school system can build an environment conducive to careers.
Providing open lines of communication
Often overlooked, healthy communication is the foundation of any successful workplace.
Education is a multi-faceted and complex institution that can often be more bureaucratic than private employment.
No matter how far up the administrative ladder school leaders are located, they still will have someone to be accountable to.
Despite their leadership status, assistant superintendents and senior directors still have someone managing them. While the district superintendent may have more power and responsibilities over the whole organization, she still must report to the governing board or committee.
These dynamics of hierarchical power can create pressure and reluctance to speak up or reach out. The Senior Director of IT may hesitate to reach out for help to the Assistant Superintendent for fear of appearing weak or inept. Academy teachers may feel the same way when they need support or collaboration with school principals, vice principals or the Director of Education.
Similarly, the principal of a charter school district should feel supported and welcome to openly communicate with the governing body, team teachers, and community members.
Educational leaders should ensure every employee feels comfortable and invited to be heard, to speak up, to ask for help, and share victories – no matter where their position locates them on the hierarchy.
Some tips for open communication for your charter school district or educational nonprofit are:
- Be present – it’s easy to get overwhelmed working in a busy educational environment. Make it a point for everyone in the institution to be present at the moment simply. Whether you are speaking with a student, a janitor, the superintendent, or a visiting dignitary, be respectful, fully engaged, and tuned in to the person in front of you.
- Listen first; speak later – it’s easy to get lost in thoughts while others say. We’ve all seen the movie portraying teachers and administrators or bosses barking out orders mindlessly instead of simply listening first. This is where emotional intelligence comes in. If you don’t know what emotional intelligence is or have forgotten, it is time to get reacquainted. Quite simply, it is about being self aware and in tune with yourself while also being aware of others and being empathetic.
Emphasizing team-building for your administrators
Open lines of communication will often be wasted without a strong team that can help make sure these open lines aren’t underused or exploited.
A healthy and inclusive team/ work family can be the deciding factor in how long your education leaders and staff continue working with your school or organization. Employees feel more comfortable when they understand that they have a team behind them to support and help them – those at the top of your workplace are no different.
According to this study, team-building is essential to honing leadership skills. Healthy educational teams and strong, emotionally intelligent leaders are crucial for successful charter schools and educational nonprofits.
Provide your current team with tips on how to build strong teams effectively.
New hires will respect a school district where effective team building happens, open lines of communication are encouraged, and this helps cultivate the kind of career-based environment that incentivizes lifetime employees rather than short-term hires.
Using consulting services to find talent in areas you haven’t thought to look
The hiring process isn’t a glamorous one. With the recent boom in remote work, the education sector has dealt with longtime employees turning to remote work and struggles with pandemic transitions.
Stronger Consulting’s search and recruitment services are an excellent choice. By utilizing this service, not only are you guaranteeing a highly qualified and diverse pool of candidates, but you will also benefit from our role in refining and development processes.
The current job market in general and in education in particular has given employees and potential employees more opportunities than they’ve ever had before. To compete for top talent, it is necessary to cultivate a career-driven work environment.
- Encourage open communication regardless of employment status or how long they have been with your school.
- Emphasize team building across all departments and provide employees with actionable ways to learn techniques that accomplish this.
- Utilize Stronger Consulting’s search and recruitment services; your school system can provide an environment for careers rather than jobs.
Hiring is an expensive line item of budget strained school districts. Reduce churn with your charter school district employees: contact us to help your educational organization efficiently locate top talent for your open positions, hire them, and keep them around.