I am so sorry to my regular readers for the lack of posts in recent weeks. I am particularly upset with myself for not posting my U.S. Constitution lesson this past Saturday. I will try to change the reliability of my posting. I do need some help though from my readers. Please email me or post suggestions of topics I could address in my blog, from Public Policy issues to my perfect school or any other topics you believe I should write about. Thanks for your help.
Today’s post will deal with some discussions I have had recently about administration in my school. I have said before there will be no central administration, at least with what you expect in a typical school. I am going to be giving a tad bit more details on the setup of my school’s administration.
The school would have various managers over specific areas of responsibility. The managers would only have a limited scope of power. In the end though all power in the school resides in what I call the Committee of the Whole. Large decisions must be made with the consent of the teachers in staff meetings held often.
Committee of the Whole. The Committee of the Whole would be made up of all licensed faculty at the school. Managers are hired by them after being interviewed by the current department managers. All decision making power over the school and its policies are made by the Committee of the Whole, while in meetings. Specific actions of the Committee will require between a simple majority and different levels of a super majority (2/3. 3/4, 4/5), depending on the decision being made. These powers would be outlined in the school constitution, charter and/or by-laws.
Committees. The school would use committees headed by the appropriate school manager to address specific concerns, issues, problems or possible changes to the school charter and by-laws. The committees would be made up teachers from all available departments. These teachers would share the items discussed in the committee and represent their department in the meetings. The committees have no power to make binding decisions. All possible solutions and decisions must be approved by the Committee of the Whole.
Evaluation Manager. The primary responsibility of this manager is to evaluate each and every teacher, manager (except themselves) and staff member in the school. A large part of this job would be observing each teacher in the classroom. It would be at least once or twice a quarter, but I would expect them to do far more than that. They would also compile the observations of other teachers, parents and students to complete the evaluation. With these observations and evaluations they would talk to each teacher addressing what needs to be improved in their teaching.
Also near the end of the year, the manager would compile a list of teachers who may or may not need to released from the school during the next school year. They would distribute the necessary evaluation information to all the teachers in the faculty. They would then vote to either retain with probation or release said teachers. This process would be made so that no one would know what teachers are being referred to in the files. Each teacher would be assigned an ID number known only to the Evaluation Manager. Teachers may or may not be able to figure out who is who, but privacy would of the utmost importance to this job. If there is an emergency issue the evaluation manager may temporarily suspend a teacher, on reduced pay, until the Committee of the Whole can render a decision about the case.
Discipline Manager. The discipline manager would oversee all discipline and attendance issues in the school, basically a Dean but with more specific powers. They would keep track of all attendance reports. If a student is sent to their office by a teacher for behavior they will contact the parents, assign punishment (I will deal with that issues in greater depth in a later post.) and/or schedule parent conferences with the teacher if needed. If there is a case of an expulsion or another disciplinary decision which is appealed by a parent or student, then they will submit the necessary paperwork to the faculty. The student will then get a chance to have their appeal heard by the Committee of the Whole. The committee will then render its decision about that specific case. They would also oversees and approves teachers progressives discipline plans.
Academic Manager. This manager would oversee all academic information and reports about the students. They would be responsible for report cards and transcripts. They would maintain the programs to record and report grades to parents and students. This manager would also create and maintain the school’s master schedule of classes as well as the academic handbook. Since this manager handles the master schedule then they would also be responsible for creating and changing student schedules. Teachers would play the role of academic advisers to students during the scheduling process. Classes will be assigned though by prerequisites and student choice.
Department Managers. These are what most schools call department chairs. They would be selected by the individual departments and elected to serve for a specific number of years, between two or three. They are responsible for submitting observations and evaluations to the evaluation manager of the school at least once a quarter. They would also interview prospective teachers applying to work at the school for their department. Either the department would choose the individual to be hired or it could be left to the Committee of the Whole. They would be required to attend manager meetings. In these meetings the department managers would be given information to share with their departments. They would also be responsible for relaying any concerns or problems from the faculty to the managers. They may select individuals from their department to serve on various committees.
Building Manager. The building manager is responsible primarily for the upkeep and scheduling of the school facilities. This includes regularly scheduled maintenance, repairs, and upgrades. They are also responsible for the scheduling of school facilities, like athletic practices, extra curricular activities, rallies and assemblies. As a side responsibility they make arrangements for substitute teachers. This could be a position in the school not run by a licensed teacher since its responsibilities largely are not academic in nature.
Financial Manager. The financial manager does not need to be held by a properly licensed teacher. They are responsible for the major financial decisions and planning of the school. Each year they will submit a budget to the Committee of the Whole for its approval. If cuts need to be made then those decisions will be made by the Committee of the Whole. They also over see pay checks and tax information.
If there are any other ideas about specific managerial positions or areas feel free to address them in the comments. Also please submit ideas on topics to be addressed in this blog. I appreciate all your help and feedback. Have a great day.