Set the Tone for a Successful School Year With Faculty Appreciation
Vol. 15 No. 1
A new school year is full of excitement and possibilities. As your teachers settle into their classrooms and kick off the fall semester, why not show appreciation for all that they do at your school?
Many upper-level administrators find it easy to acknowledge individual accomplishments and achievements privately—in the hallway between classes, via email, or before and after a meeting. However, according to research firm Gallup, only one in three workers in the U.S. strongly agrees that they received recognition or praise for doing good work in the past seven days.
Furthermore, many employees feel that their best efforts are routinely ignored. Those who do not feel adequately recognized are twice as likely to say they'll quit in the next year.
Acknowledging hard work and dedication from your faculty in a larger, more systematic way can reap large rewards. Workplace recognition motivates, provides a sense of accomplishment, and makes people feel valued. Recognition not only boosts individual employee engagement, but it has been found to increase productivity and loyalty, leading to higher retention, according to Gallup’s research.
The beginning of the fall semester is a great time to set the tone for a successful year. Consider the following suggestions to recognize and reward the excellence of your faculty.
- Sponsor a spirit week. Spirit week activities don’t have to be solely for students. Show your appreciation for the faculty by catering breakfast or lunch during the day, providing light massages during prep time, offering a sweet afternoon treat, or allowing jeans to be worn. Offer something new each day for a week to help teachers understand that they’re valued members of your team.
- Highlight ambitious achievements. Call attention to faculty members who pursue unique or ambitious professional-development objectives, such as participating in national-level organizations or coordinating new initiatives within your school. You can recognize them in your school newsletter, in faculty and staff meetings, and via social media.
- Support continued growth. Grant “gift certificates” to teachers who have illustrated their passion for pursuing professional development. The certificates allow faculty members to draw from a separate budget line to further support their professional growth. This will make faculty feel excited about future opportunities and interested in new or different initiatives. Announce the gift certificate recipients in your newsletter and include a follow-up after they use their prize that shares their new skills and how they’ll apply their takeaways to your school. (Note: This type of gift certificate may represent taxable income. Coordinate with the Business Office to address any tax-related issues.)
Recognize your hard-working faculty to help your entire school become more positive and productive. Consider implementing one or more of these initiatives to improve culture while highlighting faculty achievements to your community.
Additional ISM Resources:
The Source for Private School News Vol. 16 No. 5 What Benefits Employees REALLY Want
Additional ISM resources for Gold Consortium members:
I&P Vol. 37 No. 7 The Division Head’s Role as Liaison Between the School Head and the Faculty
I&P Vol. 34 No. 8 Recognize Your Faculty’s Excellence and Boost Student Retention