A girl was requesting to transfer to our school for Grade 7. On paper, the family was seeking the transition to a faith-based school for religious reasons. In reality, the reasons were a little more involved, including some behavioral ones.
I wasn’t surprised when shortly after her arrival, the parents made a complaint about one of the child’s teachers for being “too harsh”.
After listening to the story from each perspective – the child’s, the teacher’s and the parents’ – it was clear that there was a bit of truth in all of the stories, and a bit that reflected diverse personalities and personal agendas, too.
What’s a Principal to do – other than eat chocolate 😊?
At one point in the musical Fiddler on the Roof, Tevye is caught having to align either with his wife or his daughter. In frustration, he cries to God, “She’s right and SHE’s right!”
From years of practice, I know that each situation, while similar is different and each group of persons involved create a slightly different dynamic. So, there is no point sharing what I did in this particular situation.
The process, though, is the same in each situation:
- Gather the facts. Take as much time as you need, and be sure to speak directly with each party involved. Unless it was a grievous black/white offense, or a child’s physical safety is at risk, the fact gathering can take more than 1 day.
- Review your core values and the school goals.
- Ask each party what they would like to see as an outcome.
- Pray about it.
- Perhaps discuss the matter with a trusted confidante i.e. school Leadership Team, Pastor, Board Chair, Vice Principal.
- Make your D
- Share the decision with each party – either separately or as a group.
- Move on! If you got it wrong this time, there will always be another time to “get it right”.
Today’s Goal: Let us pray: “Come Holy Spirit and enkindle in us the fire of YOUR love!”