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Appendix - The Principal Quality Practice Guidelines: Seven Dimensions of Leadership

Procedures

The School Act and The Principal Quality Practice Guidelines: Promoting Successful Leadership in Alberta provide the basis for the responsibilities of a Principal. The Principal is responsible for all of the areas identified in these documents.

The dimensions of Principal practice listed below reflect the responsibilities of the Principal and are intended to serve as a basis for self-reflection, supervision and evaluation.

  1. Fostering Effective Relationships
    1. acts with fairness, dignity and integrity
    2. demonstrates a sensitivity to and genuine caring for others and cultivates a climate of mutual respect
    3. promotes an inclusive school culture respecting and honouring diversity
    4. demonstrates responsibility for all students and acts in their best interests
    5. models and promotes open, inclusive dialogue
    6. uses effective communication, facilitation, and problem-solving skills
    7. supports processes for improving relationships and dealing with conflict within
    8. the school community
    9. adheres to professional standards of conduct.
  2. Embodying Visionary Leadership
    1. communicates and is guided by an educational philosophy based upon sound
    2. research, personal experience and reflection
    3. provides leadership in keeping with the school authority's vision and mission
    4. meaningfully engages the school community in identifying and addressing  areas
    5. for school improvement
    6. ensures that planning, decision-making, and implementation strategies are based on a shared vision and an understanding of the school culture
    7. facilitates change and promotes innovation consistent with current and future school community needs
    8. analyzes a wide range of data to determine progress towards achieving school goals
    9. communicates and celebrates school accomplishments to inspire continuous growth.
  3. Leading a Learning Community
    1. promotes and models life-long learning for students, teachers and other staff
    2. fosters a culture of high expectations for students, teachers and other staff
    3. promotes and facilitates meaningful professional development for teachers and
    4. other staff
    5. facilitates meaningful parental involvement and ensures they are informed about their child’s learning and development.
  4. Providing Instructional Leadership
    1. demonstrates a sound understanding of current pedagogy and curriculum
    2. implements strategies for addressing standards of student achievement
    3. ensures that student assessment and evaluation practices throughout the school
    4. are fair, appropriate and balanced
    5. implements effective supervision and evaluation to ensure that all teachers consistently meet the Alberta Teaching Quality Standard
    6. ensures that appropriate pedagogy is utilized in response to various dimensions of student diversity
    7. ensures that students have access to appropriate programming based on their individual learning needs
    8. recognizes the potential of new and emerging technologies, and enables their meaningful integration in support of teaching and learning
    9. ensures that teachers and other staff communicate and collaborate with parents and community agencies, where appropriate, to support student learning
    10. supports the use of community resources to enhance student learning.
  5. Developing and Facilitating Leadership
    1. demonstrates informed decision making through open dialogue and consideration of multiple perspectives
    2. promotes team building and shared leadership among members of the school community
    3. facilitates meaningful involvement of the school community, where appropriate, in the school’s operation using collaborative and consultative decision-making strategies
    4. identifies and mentors teachers for future educational leadership roles.
  6. Managing School Operations and Resources
    1. effectively plans, organizes and manages the human, physical and financial resources of the school and identifies the areas of need
    2. ensures that school operations align with legal frameworks such as:  provincial legislation, regulation and policy; as well as school authority policy, directives and initiatives
    3. utilizes principles of teaching, learning and student development to guide management decisions and the organization of learning.
  7. Understanding and Responding to the Larger Societal Context
    1. advocates for the needs and interests of children and youth
    2. demonstrates a knowledge of local, national, and global issues and trends related to education
    3. assesses and responds to the unique and diverse community needs in the context of the school’s vision and mission
    4. advocates for the community’s support of the school and the larger education system.

Putting Leadership into Action:  Examples of Practice

  1. Fostering Effective Relationships
    1. acts with fairness, dignity and integrity
      1. treats everyone with fairness, dignity, honesty and respect
      2. maintains a consistent philosophy of education and does not compromise principles
      3. demonstrates consistency between stated philosophy and actions
    2. demonstrates a sensitivity to and genuine caring for others and cultivates a climate of mutual respect
      1. facilitates a welcoming environment in the school
      2. encourages suggestions from others
    3. promotes an inclusive school culture respecting and honouring diversity
      1. initiates and supports events which reflect the cultural makeup of the school
    4. demonstrates responsibility for all students and acts in their best interests
      1. establishes programs and implements IPP process to support learning for all students
    5. models and promotes open, inclusive dialogue
      1. encourages open, professional dialogue among staff and with students, parents and community members
    6. uses effective communication, facilitation, and problem-solving skills
      1. listens objectively to all sides before making a decision
      2. creates an environment for open communication
    7. supports processes for improving relationships and dealing with conflict within the school community
      1. ensures that conflict resolution approaches focus on the issues, not the individuals
      2. is receptive to feedback and is willing to deal with conflict
    8. adheres to professional standards of conduct
      1. leads according to the Alberta Teachers’ Association Code of Professional Conduct
  2. Embodying Visionary Leadership
    1. communicates and is guided by an educational philosophy based upon sound research, personal experience and reflection
      1. demonstrates an educational philosophy based on careful reflection of current research
      2. reflects upon past and current practice with a view to school improvement
    2. provides leadership in keeping with Northern Gateway's vision and mission
      1. develops a plan to fulfill the vision
      2. promotes Division perspective among staff
    3. meaningfully engages the school community in identifying and addressing  areas for school improvement
      1. involves staff in discussions that go beyond the daily operations of the school
      2. seeks input and new perspectives from peers and stakeholders
    4. ensures that planning, decision-making, and implementation strategies are based on a shared vision and an understanding of the school culture
      1. establishes school goals that are data-informed, and provides opportunity for the various publics’ voices, for example students, staff, parents and community members
    5. facilitates change and promotes innovation consistent with current and future school community needs
      1. supports professional development to enable teachers to effectively use technology for instructional purposes
    6. analyzes a wide range of data to determine progress towards achieving school goals
      1. uses data from PAT and Diploma Exam results in developing the school improvement plan
      2. uses data from the provincial accountability pillar survey results in developing the school improvement plan
    7. communicates and celebrates school accomplishments to inspire continuous growth
      1. publicly acknowledges the accomplishments of students and staff
      2. communicates with the Division Communication Officer and networks with local media outlets to showcase the accomplishments of students and staff
  3. Leading a Learning Community
    1. promotes and models life-long learning for students, teachers and other staff
      1. participates in a variety of formal and informal professional development activities
      2. models continuous learning (e.g., attends conferences, reads current professional literature, participates in Division in-services, belongs to a professional organization)
    2. fosters a culture of high expectations for students, teachers and other staff
      1. establishes high professional standards for teachers and other staff
      2. provides support and resources for staff, students and parents to maximize student learning
    3. promotes and facilitates meaningful professional development for teachers and other staff
      1. provides guidance, coaching and feedback for individual professional growth plans, ensuring they focus on individual, school and division needs
      2. provides evidence that all staff are involved in professional development
      3. provides resources to support professional development
    4. facilitates meaningful parental involvement and ensures they are informed about their child’s learning and development
      1. encourages parents to visit the school to discuss issues related to their children’s education
      2. facilitates the establishment of an effective School Council
      3. collaborates with the School Council Chair to establish meaningful meeting agendas
      4. promotes parent volunteer involvement in the school
      5. is readily available to parents and community members
  4. Providing Instructional Leadership
    1. ensures that the current curricula is being taught
    2. leads staff discussion on the topic of the 21st century learner and 21st century skill set
    3. demonstrates a sound understanding of current pedagogy and curriculum
      1. demonstrates effective and current teaching, learning and student assessment practices
      2. acts as a mentor, facilitator and resource person for staff with regard to curriculum and student programming
    4. implements strategies for addressing standards of student achievement
      1. analyzes the school’s academic progress and management processes
      2. facilitates professional development to enable teachers to implement instructional practices that maximize learning
    5. ensures that student assessment and evaluation practices throughout the school are fair, appropriate and balanced
      1. monitors teachers’ assessment and evaluation practices, and ensures the practices align with Division positions
    6. implements effective supervision and evaluation to ensure that all teachers consistently meet the Alberta Teaching Quality Standard
      1. uses Classroom Walkthroughs (CWs) regularly and shares results with staff
      2. visits classrooms regularly to ensure the use of effective instructional approaches
    7. ensures that appropriate pedagogy is utilized in response to various dimensions of student diversity
      1. promotes differentiated instruction
      2. facilitates the IPP process
    8. ensures that students have access to appropriate programming based on their individual learning needs
      1. provides a variety of programs that will engage the student clientele
      2. monitors the implementation of the IPP process for individual students
      3. ensures that senior high school students have access to courses that will enable them to graduate and gain access to post-secondary institutions
    9. recognizes the potential of new and emerging technologies, and enables their meaningful integration in support of teaching and learning
      1. facilitates professional development for staff in the utilization of new technologies
      2. provides evidence of the extent to which technology is being used in the school to facilitate learning
    10. ensures that teachers and other staff communicate and collaborate with  parents and community agencies, where appropriate, to support student learning
      1. ensures that wraparound services are used, where necessary, to support student growth and success
      2. keeps parents updated
    11. supports the use of community resources to enhance student learning
      1. facilitates the involvement of community members and groups in supporting students’ achievement of curricular outcomes
      2. encourages students, staff, parents and community to be active participants in the school community
  5. Developing and Facilitating Leadership
    1. demonstrates informed decision making through open dialogue and consideration of multiple perspectives
      1. encourages suggestions from others
      2. facilitates opportunities to identify issues of importance
      3. promotes a whole school perspective among staff
    2. promotes team building and shared leadership among members of the school community
      1. provides opportunities for staff to develop their leadership capacities
    3. facilitates meaningful involvement of the school community, where appropriate, in the school’s operation, using collaborative and consultative decision-making strategies
      1. seeks input, when appropriate, from staff, parents and/or students before making decisions related to school operations
    4. identifies and mentors teachers for future educational leadership roles
      1. identifies, encourages and develops staff with leadership potential
  6. Managing School Operations and Resources
    1. effectively plans, organizes and manages the human, physical and financial resources of the school and identifies the areas of need
      1. demonstrates sensitivity to staff needs and satisfaction
      2. works to ensure exemplary staff performance
      3. plans effectively for the long-term maintenance and upgrading of the plant
      4. ensures the facility is operational, clean, safe and welcoming to students, staff and visitors
      5. completes and administers school budget
      6. reviews and interprets financial statements and other budget documents
      7. ensures the distribution of resources is consistent with school plans
    2. ensures that school operations align with legal frameworks such as:  provincial legislation, regulation and policy, provincial Three Year Education Plan, and  Northern Gateway policy, administrative procedures and collective agreements
      1. ensures the facility meets standards for health and safety
      2. provides for a safe learning environment
    3. utilizes principles of teaching, learning and student development to guide management decisions and the organization of learning
      1. ensures that human resources address student needs (e.g., academic, social, emotional)
      2. matches staff assignments, school needs and priorities
  7. Understanding and Responding to the Larger Societal Context
    1. advocates for the needs and interests of children and youth
      1. seeks support from appropriate outside agencies to address particular student and school needs
    2. demonstrates a knowledge of local, national, and global issues and trends related to education
      1. uses knowledge of local, national and international trends in the decision-making process
    3. assesses and responds to the unique and diverse community needs in the context of the school’s vision and mission
      1. involves members of the school community when reviewing the school vision and plans
    4. advocates for the community’s support of the school and the larger education system
      1. encourages use of community volunteers to support student learning and safety (e.g., assist with field trips) 

References:

Sections 20, 60, 61, 113 School Act 

 

Revised November 2009