Seven Clear Signs It’s Time To Make a Change at Principal

Every once and a while, school district superintendents must consider replacing a principal who is no longer effective. It seems simple enough, but the task is not as clear cut as it seems. To help you decide, let’s discuss seven clear cut signs that its time to make a leadership change at one of your district’s schools.

  1. Their leadership style and approach is outdated. When a principal’s leadership style is outdated, teachers and other staff members will stop responding. That means that they are no longer inspired to follow their principal because they have stopped learning and growing. This happens when the leader gets complacent and refuses to reinvent themselves. The most effective school leaders are proactive, changing with the times, and staying up on new trends. If you begin to notice that that one of your principals is operating on auto-pilot, it is time to make a leadership change.
  2. They have a sense of entitlement. When one of your principals starts to act like the district owes them something, they may be power-hungry. Sooner or later, they are coming for your job “by hook or crook.”
  3. They are rude. When a principal is rude and disrespectful, it means that they feel threatened, and are not confident in their abilities. Competent school leaders show executive presence by treating others fairly and exuding a touch of class.
  4. They exude selfishness. Being a school leader is all about helping teachers teach, and students learn. A selfish principal is a dangerous one, as their decisions are based on what is best for them not on what’s best for the students. They are not looking to establish community partnerships for the betterment of the district, they are looking out for themselves.
  5. They are disorganized. If you ask one of your principals to discuss the vision that they have for their school, and they fumble the response, chances are they are disorganized. Effective education leaders are always prepared, even for the unexpected. Organization can be taught, but if its couple with other weakness, it may be time to consider a leadership change.
  6. They are indecisive. It is frustrating to work for an indecisive principal. Since a school is a fast-paced organization, every second counts. When principals become indecisive, it is a sign that they are losing trust in their own abilities. They can’t handle the pressure anymore and don’t want to be held accountable for making mistakes. In the process, they are losing the respect of their employees and colleagues.
  7. They have no strategic focus. When a school leader lacks strategic focus, it is hard for them to realize the vision that they have for their school. They can no longer influence growth and innovation, “and can’t see the forest for the trees.” Because of this, they cannot maximize the resources that they were given and are essentially a dead man or dead woman walking.

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