by: Noemi B. Brul
Liliw Sub-Office, SDO Laguna
Pag-Asa Elementary School
School heads are persons of influence who have the power to shape the direction and culture of their schools. Thus, school principals must exhibit proactive behaviors that promote a positive and inclusive environment for all students, and teachers.
Just like any other leadership position, school heads face numerous challenges and responsibilities. How they respond to these is whether they can become proactive leaders who anticipate and address issues before they arise, rather than simply reacting to problems once they occur. By practicing proactive behaviors, school principals can demonstrate their commitment to creating a supportive and successful school culture.
Proactive behaviors are easy to spot in a school head who consistently engages in open and honest communication with staff, teachers, students, and parents. They always see the big picture and take the initiative to implement programs and policies that foster collaboration and inclusivity. These leaders assess the needs and challenges of their school community by learning from the past and actively seeking feedback from stakeholders.
For instance, when dealing with a problem concerning school policies, a proactive principal will gather input from teachers, students, and parents to understand their concerns and perspectives before making any decisions. This way, the principal can ensure that all voices are heard and considered in the decision-making process, creating a sense of ownership and investment in the school’s direction.
Furthermore, proactive school principals know the value of their team and actively work to build and strengthen relationships with their staff and teachers. They create a supportive and collaborative work environment by providing opportunities for professional development, recognizing and celebrating achievements, and fostering a sense of unity among the school community. In doing so, they can empower their staff and teachers to contribute to their ideas and expertise, ultimately enhancing the overall effectiveness of the school.
Above all, these school leaders are trustworthy. They prioritize transparency, accountability, and integrity in their actions and decisions, earning the trust and respect of their colleagues, students, teachers, parents, and stakeholders. In turn, they inspire loyalty and support from the entire school community, making it easier to navigate challenges and implement positive changes. A leader who is proactive in their approach fosters a culture of continuous improvement and growth, where everyone feels valued and empowered to contribute to the success of the school.
Nevertheless, every school head must be mindful of the potential consequences of inappropriate leadership styles that can undermine the development of a healthy school culture. These leadership styles like authoritarianism, micromanagement, or neglect, can lead to a toxic school culture where fear, mistrust, and dissatisfaction prevail. They must always become proactive in their approach and embrace a leadership style that promotes inclusivity, collaboration, and transparency.
Leading a school is never an easy task at it requires proactive and inclusive leadership that fosters collaboration, values feedback, builds strong relationships, prioritizes transparency and accountability, and inspires trust among the school community. By becoming a proactive leader, our school heads can create a positive and conducive learning environment where every learner, teacher, staff, and stakeholders thrive and where the goals and values of the educational institution are realized.