Although it is unfortunate, Board leaders often find themselves dealing with one or more Trustees who have become ineffective in their Board roles. While various issues can lead to this ineffectiveness—burnout, disinterest, overextension, etc.—any Trustee who is not meeting expectations poses a threat to the Board’s morale as well as overall success.
Creating a “safe haven” for the students at your school is a major Board concern, and making sure all necessary protocols and policies for school safety are in place is a must.
With this in mind, consider the report, Indicators of School Crime and Safety: 2015, released by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) and the Bureau of Justice Statistics in May 2016.
Trustees are human beings, and from a strategic viewpoint, human nature can impede or disrupt a Board’s key functions. One term that captures much of this problematic dimension of human nature is subjectivity.
For Board members, subjectivity may lead to an overlying personalized way of seeing organizational purpose, envisioning the school’s future, and determining planning priorities. Subjectivity can easily undermine the strategic thinking needed to preserve school mission, ensure organizational stability, and lead a school into the future. Increases in tension or anxiety on the Board may contribute to increased subjectivity.
The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools supports and lobbies for charter schools at the state and federal levels. The organization’s latest annual report indicates that more than three million students now attend public charter schools. That’s nearly three times the student population of a decade ago. There are now more than 6,900 charter schools in the United States. Clearly there has been demonstrated growth in that sector.
Public schools around the nation are experiencing a higher percentage of new teachers. According to data from the Department of Education, 12% of all public school teachers are in their first or second year of teaching—in some states, more than 15%. This “greening trend” in teaching has been noticeable and well-researched over the past two decades.
One way to ensure strategic continuity at your school is to preserve Board memory—to learn and grow from your history. Your school’s strategic “history” provides both constraints and opportunities for its strategic future. As Board President, you should consider a formal review of the quality of your existing historical portrait, take steps to reorganize that portrait if needed, and elevate the quality of your school’s organizational “Board memory.” Consider the following four key steps.
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