Masters in School Leadership
Being a leader means having the passion and integrity to influence others, lay the foundation for change, and accomplish related goals. Administrators and principals have the unique opportunity to become leaders of our country’s youth and as such, are some of the most significant and influential leaders today.
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According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 445,400 education administrator jobs in 2008. That number is expected to grow by almost 8% by the year 2018. This projected growth is primarily the result of more children enrolling in school, and the greater administrative responsibilities being placed on schools.
As the need for more school administrators grows, so do their duties and responsibilities. Administrators need a wide variety of skills and knowledge to continuously improve their schools and their students’ learning outcomes. To ensure success at their schools, administrators gain expertise in management and organizational development by earning master’s degrees in school leadership.
How can a master’s program in school leadership help me as an administrator?
The main goal of any school administrator is to establish standard policies and educational goals, while creating a safe and supportive learning environment. Master’s programs in school leadership help educators expand their knowledge of disciplinary policy, curriculum design, and organizational development needed to achieve that goal.
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Consider some of the following organizations open to Administrators:
Future administrators learn the best strategies for teaching reading, writing, math, and other core subjects in graduate school classes. This allows them to set the academic tone for their school by recognizing what students need to learn, and how best to implement effective teaching methods in the classroom.
School administrators must stay up-to-date on current practices in education. Graduate school gives potential administrators resources and information on the latest technologies and strategies used for effective instruction. This technology not only benefits student learning, but professional growth for teachers as well.
As leaders, administrators guide teachers and set examples for students to follow. Courses in graduate school are designed to give new administrators the tools needed to lead teachers toward valuable educational practices, so both teachers and students benefit.
Graduate school teaches administrators how to manage effective community and administrative relationships. This allows administrators to practice useful communication with staff and parents, and get the community involved for the purpose of improving the overall quality of the school.
Courses taught in Master’s in Education Leadership programs
- Foundations in Educational Leadership – These classes are designed to introduce teachers to the theories and practices of school leadership. Administrators learn to develop a deep understanding of the challenges faced by modern educational leaders.
- School Law – This course is an overview of the legal aspects included in education and school, state, and federal regulations. Administrators learn about the history and recent developments in education law.
- Change and Innovations in Education – The focus of this class is on the skills and processes needed for planned change in education. Administrators develop an understanding of practical change and planning, the factors that affect change, and educational program innovations.
- Supervision and Leadership – This type of class focuses on effective communication, encouraging high levels of education, and creating a safe and supportive learning environment. Administrators learn all aspects of managing and supervising staff and students.
- Field-based Internship – This is generally a school-based internship designed for administrators to practice school leadership and management duties. Administrators will be assigned a mentor or adviser.
How will a graduate degree in school leadership help my students?
School leadership courses offer many opportunities for administrators learn how to become effective advocates for students. It is the principal’s responsibility to make sure that every student in his or her school is receiving the independent help that is necessary for success.
As the leader, it is important for administrators to make sure that all teachers stay current on common learning disabilities and the latest teaching strategies. If a student is struggling in a certain area, principals must ensure resources are available for that student.
Teachers also need to understand and administer assessments, and that starts with the administration. It is the principal’s responsibility to ensure teachers are effectively teaching certain benchmarks needed for every student to succeed.
For example, if teachers are teaching vocabulary, they need to know the best instructional practices for vocabulary. This ensures each and every student is reaching his or her goal. If the majority of the students aren’t learning vocabulary, the fault ultimately lies with the administration.
If you’re interested in learning more, research schools offering master’s degree programs in School Leadership.