It has been an honorable challenge to be my schools Acting Principal, for a term, while our principal was on a sabbatical. We are a small rural school who models and values the virtues. The students are our greatest advocates for these values. They constantly make me feel proud to be a teacher in their school.
I must admit I was slow at taking the wheel at the helm of the school. I am not sure why but maybe it was out of habit of being second in command or I am so relaxed I am almost horizontal, arguable I am sure. The fact is, it took a few moments for it to sink in.
My first moment; In fact, the first week, a sheep was being chased by a trail of children through the corridors. Having a sheep staring at me from the hall door had me wandering fleetingly who will fix this problem then I realized it was me.Another occasion I was in a staff meeting with a visiting expert when the silence at the start of the meeting was very heavy. I looked around wandering why we were so quiet, my right hand girl was giving me an encouraging look which reminded me to introduce our guest. That was the last time I took the back seat, from then on I knew that I was at the helm and needed to be guiding the ship at all times.
Now the stuff that left me wandering if I was a teacher, psychologist, electrician, plumber, cleaner, caretaker, nurse, doctor, mediator, detective, negotiator or a leading educator! We had our water shut off for a day, sewerage spilling under a building, toilets overflowing,scabies,chicken pox, whooping cough, a smelly uninhabitable classroom, a rare building inspection, a small contained electrical fire, bothered staff, ambulance, police and a week before school ending another threat of water being turned off.
On a happier note we had our cultural festival, mishmash tv, winning artist, kiwi expedition, field trip with some whales in the pacific, snail and whale visit, Fred Hollows fundraiser, 4 new students, mufti day, Toro Piko Piko and ASB Get-wise.
The office lady, who is priceless and kept me sane, said in the 7 years she had been there none of the bothersome stuff had ever happened and now it all happens in one term!
I have been officially challenged and I rose to it, loved it and grew from it.
The hardest challenge was not to take the staff issues personally. The issues needed to be addressed professionally. I constantly referred to the registered teachers criteria to give focus to what is important. Not once did I forget why I was there. “the children, the children, the children.”
In the weekend before the penultimate week of term, I wrote my application for a years study leave. I have frequently pondered the opportunity for being a principal and still do but what I know, for now, is that I want to study. I am very keen to expand my knowledge in eLearning. To be an effective, inspiring, motivated leader, of one of the things I am passionate about in teaching; using electronic gadgets to enhance learning opportunities, support global collaboration and inspire creativity.
Fingers crossed, wish me luck and if you applied I am sending you some luck.
Bring on Term 3, I am ready, pleased, excited and wondering what brilliance will make me proud.