Sunday, January 3, 2016

Sunday Nights

I’m sure it’s true for anyone who works a weekday job:  Sundays are a mixed bag.  In some ways they’re the best days, because they’re usually set aside for the best stuff:  supreme laziness, perhaps, or a special family meal, or the week’s longest training run.  But they also stink because… well, because… tomorrow is coming.  And that means burying another weekend.   Forever.

As a teacher, Sunday afternoons and evenings were my least favorite.  I’d had my weekend of fun activities, but—just like that—it was suddenly time to make sure everything was graded, materials were copied and prepared, and that I had plans and ideas for how the week would unfold.  No small task, that:  as a teacher, I spent most Sunday afternoons in my classroom getting things ready. 

But for a principal, Sunday evenings are a lot different.  In a good way. 

Here’s the thing:  A principal never truly steps away from the work.  That’s not a complaint—it’s just the way it is.  At any time—weekdays, weekends, the middle of the night, even—the phone might ring with a crisis of a staff member or student; some problem with the facility; an extracurricular controversy; a colleague with a plea for support; and so on.   So a principal is generally keeping up with stuff all the times—emails, phone calls, and attending extra-curricular activities or supporting students in some way.  It's all reactionary.   

But Sunday nights are different.  They lean toward calm.  Quiet.  Issues from the weekend tend to have been resolved.  Future challenges are lying in silent wait.  For a brief time, all is good.  Easy.  A respite from rapid-fire decision making, long to-do lists, and a quick-response approach that characterizes the rest of the week.   

And that means, for a principal, Sunday nights are usually nothing short of lovely. 

Ahhh.  


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