Leaders are the heart of their campus. A leader’s decisions can determine student outcomes, teacher success, and even the campus culture as a whole. A campus culture is a unique outlook or set of behaviors that defines a school–but did you know that each classroom within a campus has its own culture, too? It’s a campus leader’s responsibility to ensure that the cultures developing in these classrooms align with the overall campus culture.
But how do you make sure your campus culture influences a positive classroom culture?
The changemakers on the classroom level are your fantastic teachers. Teachers create a cultural climate in their classrooms based on their life experiences, personalities, teaching philosophy, and student needs.
It’s impossible to have the same classroom culture in each classroom because teachers are unique people, but you can make sure these micro-cultures align to your desired campus culture.
Here are a few ways you can work to have your campus culture fit your classroom culture.
Does everyone on your campus know what’s going on? Are any teachers using outdated methods or implementing initiatives that no longer work? You’re only as strong as the information your teachers have. Ensure that your entire staff knows your vision for learning and your campus’s plan for student success.
Are all of your teachers implementing your initiatives equally? For example, if you want to focus on student-centered learning on your campus and some of your teachers are focusing heavily on standardized testing, that classroom culture doesn’t fit your campus culture.
Ensure that teachers are implementing equally for your ironclad campus culture to filter down to the classroom level.
What does the messaging from leadership look like? Do you constantly change your messaging as a leader? Teachers absorb a lot of information, and conflicting, chaotic, or changing messaging can be frustrating or confusing.
Find your voice and message and stick to it. If your campus wants to focus on literacy, for example, you can always say “Rainsville Raiders read” in meetings or your emails. It seems small, but consistency in messaging builds confidence in your campus culture and direction.
It’s not easy to establish your campus culture, especially on the classroom level. But if you can establish a consistent culture on your campus, you’ll see better initiative implementation, higher teacher satisfaction, and improved learner outcomes.
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