Educator, author, and consultant, Jeffrey Benson, is making a case for educators in a position of leadership to carve out time and jump back into the classroom. Even if it’s on a limited basis.
Benson is speaking directly to “anyone whose job it is to change other peoples way of working.” For Benson, this means instructional coaches, assistant principals and possibly principals.
Why jump back in?
Benson argues that getting back in the classroom builds credibility and leverage with your staff.
“They’ll respect you more, they will listen to you more. When you bring things up they’re going to say, well he/she knows what the work is like,” says Benson.
But Benson also points out that getting back in can benefit the students. He says many of those in leadership positions were once master teachers.
How do you find the time?
Benson says the first step is for the leaders at the school to agree to make the effort.
“Let’s say we need four hours to get back in the classroom during the week. How do we carve four hours out of this person’s schedule?” Benson suggests some duties are going to have to be reassigned in order to make getting back in the classroom a possibility. “Can we give the person a couple of lunch duties? Can we take them off of the beginning of school duty? Can we pull back on the number of people they’re coaching?
Benson also is a proponent of these leader teaching to an area of strength. Doing so will reduce prep time and will benefit the students.
“The students that have you will probably benefit greatly from your expertise and wisdom.”
To hear other time-saving ideas from Benson, listen to Episode 95 of the Class Dismissed Podcast on iTunes or your favorite podcasting app