- The staffroom is abuzz during breaks and most staff conversations are about learning and how we can make things EVEN better!
- The vast majority of staff speak proudly of their school and would have their own children enrolled (if age and geographically appropriate)
- Staff go above and beyond the call of duty without complaining, feeling resentful or keeping score
- Staff are forgiving of leaders when things don’t go perfectly
- Great staff want to stay and aren’t looking for other careers
- Leaders are highly visible, know people’s names and troubleshoot seemlessly
- Staff always feel supported and know school leaders have their backs
- Parents and visitors to the school are greeted by all staff they cross paths with
- The morning vibe is positive and energetic as opposed to cynical and apathetic
- Parental complaints are about minor irritations rather than significant issues
Author Dennis Sparks presents 9 ways you know a school culture is in trouble.
You know a school culture is in trouble when…
- Truly honest conversations are most likely to happen in parking lots.
- The only honest things people say in meetings are complaints.
- Leaders don’t show up for meetings as promised, or show up late and/or leave early.
- Cynicism triumphs over healthy skepticim.
- “Authorities” of all sorts — from the principal to the district office to consultants — are reflexively distrusted and dismissed.
- “Good enough” could be the school’s mission statement.
- Being “crazy busy” is a sufficient reason for not doing what you said you would do.
- After just a few years new teachers begin to sound and act like grizzled veterans who are deeply entrenched in their ways.
- Educators feel more professionally connected to followers on Twitter they have never personally met than to year-level, department or PLC colleagues with whom they share students and common purposes.
Let me know if you’d like help with building a positive school culture in your school in 2021. CLICK HERE to contact me.