Saturday, July 15, 2017

Confessions of a New Administrator: Week #5

This week has been the smoothest yet, and full of #eduwins! I'll share a handful of them below:

  1. We had constructed a safety plan for a student to help him regulate & stay safe in school. He had a couple of days without any issues, but the real victory came when we had to put the safety plan in place and it worked like a charm!
  2. A different student was having a very rough morning, and I was called to the classroom to help support her. After encouraging her that just because a mistake happened in the morning, it didn't mean the whole day had to be bad, she begrudgingly made it back to the group. Later in the day, she was in the office, beaming and turning in a LEARN ticket (our PBIS system)!
  3. Another student has spent quite a bit of time in the office and also suspended due to his behavior earlier in the summer, but I haven't seen him this week. I pulled him aside to check in with him, and some of his comments included:
    "School is more fun when I am good."
    "My friend told me, it's like you're a different person, you're nice and more fun to be around."
    "My friend [who he often got into trouble with] and I talked, and we decided that we're going to keep being good next school year."

    (I know it's not necessarily that easy, but it was encouraging to hear him realize the benefits of his improved behavior!)
  4. Yet another student has had a number of behavioral issues this summer, and I haven't quite been able to figure out the function of her behavior or how to reach her.  She has a contract about being able to go on field trips based on her behavior, and unfortunately, she missed the last one.  She had a great week and was so close to earning her field trip, but once again, I got a call asking for support because she was being defiant. I decided to try something new and actually give her what she wanted (a break from everyone) if she asked appropriately.  After a bit of time, she followed the teacher direction to take at least one step into the room, ask politely for a break, and wait for the teacher's answer before taking her break. That was the first step, but the next question was if she would actually come back to the group after the 5-minute timer went off.  I swung back by the classroom just as it beeped, and...she did it! Yes! She kept her field trip :-).
  5. One of the parts of my role that is new to me is doing teacher evaluations. It has been so much fun talking with teachers and hearing about their perspective on the summer. I was especially encouraged by one who shared that she feels like she has grown professionally this summer, especially in being willing to give up control in the classroom and let the kids figure things out themselves. Yes! Even if nothing else happened this summer, I think that moving people along that spectrum from being more teacher-led to student-led would be worth it!

Of course, it wasn't a perfect week. I still had kids get into fights and one teacher walk by a [hidden] wasp's nest and get stung 17 times (she's okay, though). Nevertheless, I've really been able to see the gratification that comes through those times where you feel like you've really reached someone! These are the moments that keep you going through tough times, and I am so grateful for how many we had this week!


  1. Way to go!! Thanks for sharing your #eduwins! I love reading about your admin adventures!

  2. Aubrey, I'm loving your admin stories. I'm really curious to see how #3 turns out. It sounds like the boys have their own pact to "keep being good". And what a great job teacher in #5 is doing. Your modeling and encouragement on student-led classrooms is paying off. Thanks for sharing!!!