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The Importance of School Leaders Being Visible

In this video, we share some highlights from Oliver Bruce's book 'Just for the ASKing!' focused around the importance of visibility for school leaders . . .

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Oliver Bruce, a middle-school principal and the author of 'Just for the ASKing!' wrote several reflections on the importance of high visibility for school leaders. Here are the key points.

 

The first is that being visible means not being a stranger to your own people. They may know your name but if you don't engage with your staff and students, you might as well be invisible. It's important to become a part of the staff community, not above it. Also, walking regularly around the school makes it a normal and routine event, rather than associated with something negative like learning walks or lesson observations.

 

Second, what you do when you're seen is noted and sends a message to everyone. When you are seen around the school day, it tells your stakeholders that you value what they do, and nothing is  too small or unimportant. When you attend non-academic events, it signals your support for extracurricular activities and the holistic development of everyone.

 

Third, being social and personable creates a positive image of the school. By creating opportunities to converse with various people within your community, you'll be seen as open-minded and ready for dialogue - establishing trust in equal measure along the way.

 

Fourth, as a leader, you cannot assess everything from your office. Informally being seen and present around  school can give you a great insight into the quality of classroom teaching and learning. This also gives teachers the chance to showcase their work and allows them to receive informal feedback. You are also able to 'catch' good things as they happen, and ensure that staff are praised for them.

 

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