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December 31, 2012

"Why Do So Many Teachers Quit Their Jobs? Because They Hate Their Bosses"

Some more information consistent with a hypothesis of mine: don't increase teachers' pay (much); improve their working conditions


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I served on a school board for a while, and my observation is that we 'promote' to the principal position either a)good teachers or b) those who want better compensation, or c) both. The problem is that the skills, knowledge, and abilities needed to be a good principal are not the same as to be a good teacher and have nothing to do with wanting greater compensation.

Add to that the 'fact' that it's all but impossible to hire as a principal [or superintendent] anyone who doesn't have an 'appropriate' education graduate degree *and* a certificate/license from a state bureaucracy [which is essentially controlled by the state Education Establishment] and it's a wonder you ever hire a good principal. On top of that, we not only pay bad school administrators as well as good ones, the bad ones seem to rotate endlessly through new jobs, usually gaining compensation as they go.

We are hiring from an inadequate pool of potential administrators, almost always. For instance, the superintendent has the largest [probably] impact on the school budgets and principals are close behind, but almost none of them have had any useful training whatsoever on any budget techniques other than preparing the request.

Given that this means way too many administrators are somewhere between inadequate and incompetent and have hit their Peter Principle level, it's no wonder they don't work well with their teachers. What else is possible for them?

Terry Pratt

It's been said (Tom Peters?) that people join companies and leave their bosses.

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