By Brahim Ait Hammou
By Brahim Ait Hammou
Morocco World News
Tinghir, Morocco, April 6, 2012
I am not a school headmaster, but I think that those looking at headmasters and administrators from the outside are more qualified to talk about the deadly aspects of a school leader. I am teaching in my tenth year now, and I think that I have gathered enough data to describe what I think really constitutes the worst school leader. Here I am disclosing some of these features that you might have also seen or heard about somewhere.
It’s really a good thing for a school leader to listen to his or her colleagues, and have consultants and advisors within and outside his or her school. It’s a necessity today for any leader to cooperate and work within a group system.
Yet, one of the worst mistakes that undermine the image of the leader in the eyes of his or her colleagues and co-workers is when the decisions taken by the leader are not his or her own, and they harm more than they cure the school and the students’ interests. It’s unfortunate that so many decisions are taken by others and put into practice by the school leader without even weighing the effects.
It’s also a deadly mistake for a leader when he or she’s no longer inspiring the school. Leaders should take initiatives; provide ideas, guidance and advice for teachers and students as well. Some head teachers are ‘only there’ and the educational administration, unfortunately, knows that he or she is only filling the gap of the “head leader”. What’s the use of a “useless” leader?
What roles is he or he really playing in school if they’re not helping to make learning possible and to make growth and success the story of his or her school? It’s so sad that many school leaders do nothing more than watch who is present and who is absent today and the same tomorrow! Something that shouldn’t be his or her job in the first place because that’s far is far from the chief responsibility of the position of a “leader”.
The other terrible feature of a school leader is when he or she is ‘killing’ both the students and the teachers, and depriving them of their motivation and enthusiasm for a better school life.
So many school leaders really destroy “their” school by the decisions they take, consciously or unconsciously. So many things are meant to be positive, and they end up being no more than a failure. To err is human; however, it’s too serious when a mistake affects a whole generation, a whole nation. And that’s why making mistakes is really tough on the society in the domain of education. Enough about this!
It is so “childish” for a leader when he or she gets into minor “conflicts” with the teachers or the students. Many school leaders pay too much attention to watching minute details about everything that’s happening in the school that they forget about the big picture and projects that the school is in need of. Who will deal with big issues when the headmaster is the one who deals with “absurdities”? It’s the leader’s job to have more open eyes on the outside of his or her school than on what’s happening inside. It’s the outside where he or she should seek partnerships that will make the school a better learning place for everyone.
So sarcasm and laughter is triggered when a school leader is afraid of spending from the budget of the school. It’s for spending not for keeping for the coming year. There are many of the school heads who want to get an “EXCELLENT” observation from their superiors for having kept the money as it was sent to the school’s account. What’s worse is when the leader thinks that asking partners and sponsors for financial help is “too much”! Some of them think that they are not going to pay their own money! Education is an adventure. We want our students to take risks. It’s NOT POSSIBLE as long as the teachers and leaders don’t take risks.
Edited by Benjamin Villanti
A teacher of English as a Foreign Language, Brahim Ait Hammou, has been teaching for ten years. He is interested in social media ,blogging and the use of ICT in education. He is is also interested in using projects in language learning.