Principal - Wallace Supplement - May/June 2018 - 8

SHAPING A VISION

Pam Williams
Bethesda Elementary School
Lawrenceville, GA

Marc Martin
Commodore John Rodgers
Elementary/Middle School
Baltimore, MD

Antoinette Hudson
Fairview Elementary School
Denver, CO

Tips for New Principals
What's the first step a new principal should take to shape a vision of academic success? Principals Marc Martin, Pam Williams,
and Antoinette Hudson suggested more than one. Here are a few tips they have for fellow school leaders:
GET TO KNOW THE SCHOOL COMMUNITY. Ask teachers
what they're most proud of at the school and what they would
love to change. Use this feedback to make small immediate
changes that are welcomed by staff. These early wins are key
to building buy-in and creating a shared vision of student success. "They won't care about what you know until they know
you care," Williams says.
CUSTOMIZE THE VISION TO YOUR SCHOOL. "It should
represent a substantial change from the way the school has
been operating," Martin advises. "At a turnaround school, the
change must be physical as well as philosophical, since the
school has been failing in so many ways."

8

PRINCIPAL * Special Supplement - May/June 2018

DIG INTO THE DATA. Examine your school's data at the
disaggregated levels, Hudson recommends. Then, use this
information to collaboratively develop a vision of success with
your teachers.
MAKE IT STICKY. Brand the vision with a catchy slogan or
acronym that captures its essence. Use it everywhere, as a
constant reminder to students, staff, and families of where the
school is headed.



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Principal - Wallace Supplement - May/June 2018 - Cover3
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