Ask Michael

Vol. 11 No. 8

Q: A member of our Board came up with a performance evaluation form that he wants us to use to evaluate teachers. Is it better for us to introduce this to teachers at the end of the semester in May, or should we wait until September when the new year begins?


Be Not Afraid: The Head is In Charge, Not HR and the Attorneys

Vol. 11 No. 8

There was a fascinating—and deeply disturbing—case in the national media this month involving the termination of a college coach for verbally and physically degrading his players. Many of the reports about the case indicated that certain administrators wanted to terminate the coach when the incidents first came to light, but they were advised by HR and legal counsel that they “didn’t have enough evidence” to do so. While we have no special insight into the veracity of the facts reported, we wanted to use this example as a means of examining a key leadership issue in private-independent schools today: How much power should the school’s attorney (and HR adviser) have?


Integrated Learning Goals

Vol. 11 No. 7

The education world has been transforming since the mid-1990s as technology came to play larger roles in the lives of us all. Learning happens from watching videos, reading articles, searching and sorting through results, playing games—and all of these learning activities can take place virtually any where. Mobile smart devices have helped change the way we manage and intercept information. For the better part of our days, we’re receiving and transmitting messages almost subconsciously; we’re always learning.

green feet

Green Corner: Making Your Own Green Cleaner

Vol. 11 No. 7

Using harsh chemicals around children, especially young children, can be harmful to their health. But you don’t have to run to the local organic store or shop online for organic solutions. Your Facilities Manager can mix her own cleaning solutions with items you most likely already have stored in your school’s closets.


Five Classic Termination Mistakes

Vol. 11 No. 7

Letting someone go is never an easy task. Employees may become violent, defensive, or extremely emotional. If you have a strong working relationship with the person you must terminate, it can be difficult for you. As emotionally complicated as firing someone is, it can also quickly become a legal disaster if not handled properly.


Considering Merit Pay: Motivation, Fairness, and Retention

Vol. 11 No. 7

There has been considerable discussion and debate in private school board rooms, administrative offices, and faculty lounges in recent years regarding “merit pay” (also known as “pay for performance”). While this type of pay arrangement is common in virtually every environment outside of schools, it is still a relatively novel concept in the private-independent school world. Today, we’d like to take a look at issues of motivation, fairness, and retention with respect to merit pay systems.

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