We all know that children feel the pressures to perform well, but often it is the stress that the teachers are under that can be the biggest concern for headteachers. They have so much to do, marking, planning and monitoring the children, that it is important to make sure someone is looking out for them. It could be a sit down chat or a means of escape but you must make sure that they know you are there to support them no matter how small an issue.
Having a good relationship with your staff is a great way to make sure the school year runs smoothly and that you will keep up, and even improve the reputation your school has.
Throughout the term it is crucial to set up regular chats with your teachers to ensure they share any concerns they may have. This not only gives them the chance to express any problems they may have but is also your chance for you to get a gauge of how they are getting on and coping with the challenges that the profession brings.
Also take the time to drop into classes throughout the term so that you can see how the children interact with their teaching and to assess how you can help them to get the most of of their classes. It will also build the relationships you have with the children themselves.
As well as talks whilst at school, it’s good to make sure your teachers are getting some down time, so arrange a night out such as a pub quiz where they can relax and have some time away from the classroom and marking. They will build relationships with each other and it may even bring out other characteristics such as their competitive spirit.
Take advantage of the time when the kids are away for a week at half term, or a few more at christmas and book a team bonding day. This gets your teachers away from the day-job and gives them a chance to let off some steam.
Knowing that they have day outs to look forward to will help them to get to the end of term and also get all their marking done so they can relax and enjoy their spare time.
Much like teachers set their children goals for the year, it is good for you to set targets for the teachers. They could range from achieving a certain grade in their subject, to ensuring that they arrange enough time to speak to parents about the children’s progress, but it gives you all a clear idea of what you are expecting and what is expected of them.
Adding incentives to that will also help to keep the teachers motivated. And may even bring out a competitive streak to compete against each other to achieve them.
It is also important to make sure that the children are happy. One way to do this is to encourage, where possible and relevant, that they have the opportunity to go on school trips. They could just be to a local attraction but the hands-on nature of these trips can help children to learn new things, and can even bring some of the more shy members of the class out of their shells.
It is difficult to juggle all the tasks that are expected of a headteacher, but as long as you make sure you keep an eye on the teachers and children as well as the running of the school itself, you will find your job easier and a lot more rewarding.