Building principals and assistant principals have been described as having one of the most difficult and least envious jobs in education. Mel Riddle, in a blog posted in the NASSP Febuary issue of NewsLeader commented “When I used to tell people that I was a high school principal, they would look at me as if I had just landed from Mars.” www.nasspblogs.org/principaldifference1 “Being a principal is a difficult job even in the best times. In times of shrinking budgets, it can be a nightmare.”
If that sounds familar to you, then you are not alone. A recent survey in California, “Competing Pressures Put Strain on School Principals Study Shows” www.vcstar.com/news/2012/jan/02/competing-pressures-put-strain-on-school-study/ covers the issues that Virginia building administrators also encounter in their daily routines. In California, shrinking budgets and mounting responsibilities create pressures that make the job untenable. A survey of the more than 600 principals in California listed a lack of time as a barrier to improving teacher quality for nearly one-third of the principals. Limited time and limited resources seem to be universal issues at either end of our nation.
If you read both of these commentaries, you will not find a solution to the issues you may face with tight time frames, extensive paperwork and too few hours in a day. The good news is that other administrators across the nation are also busy doing the best they can for students and staff and hopefully proud of their contribution to their communities.