Effective school leaders work with students and staff to promote a professional learning environment where students and adults excel. School leaders work collaboratively with stakeholders to create a working environment that is positive and student-centered. Human resource leadership plays an important role in building the school’s professional capacity. Moreover, school leaders must work collaboratively to recruit and hire quality teachers, promote teacher retention, and collaboratively engage school staff in distributed leadership to promote school improvement and student success. Recruiting and hiring quality teachersRecruiting and hiring good teachers are the most important task for a school leader.
High quality instruction delivered by effective teachers is the key to student success. Teachers play a vital role in the success of school improvement. The tasks of teacher recruitment have traditionally been assigned to central office staff within school districts, but leaving these critical responsibilities to a single source is no longer adequate. The ability to recruit and support good teachers is a community challenge, which demands innovative solutions collaboratively developed by diverse stakeholders (Reed, 2018, p.
1). Administrators work to ensure students receive the highest quality instruction from dedicated teachers. Yet, ensuring that every student benefits from quality instruction continues to be a struggle for leaders. According to Guha, Hyler, and Darling-Hammond (2017) low salaries and poor working conditions often contribute to the difficulties of recruiting teachers. As a consequence, in many schools, students often face a revolving door of teachers over the years. Under these circumstances, everyone loses: Student achievement is undermined by high rates of teacher turnover and by teachers who are inadequately prepared for the challenges they face (Guha & et al, 2017, p. 31). Many school districts have begun to think of innovative ways to secure quality teachers. In addition to the normal practices of recruiting such as hosting job fair and visiting teacher education program, leaders have partnered with district and community leaders and begun to look at more innovative ways to secure quality teachers. For example, some school districts have begun to offer higher teacher salaries, signing bonuses and teacher residency programs, assist in recruiting highly qualified teachers. Furthermore, school districts have acknowledged the shortage of teachers and are taking a proactive approach to recruiting and hiring quality teachers. If school leaders continue to promote and encourage additional support to help with recruitment, students will obtain the quality education needed to improve schools.Teacher RetentionHaving a well-qualified teacher in every classroom is a __________ for many school leaders. Retention is the ability to keep teachers in the classroom and lesson turnover. Teacher retention poses a great threat to successful student outcomes. Nationally, about a third of new teachers leave the profession within five years ( ). The turnover of effective teachers can have a negative effect on student learning. To promote the retention of effective teachers, school districts leaders and human resource personnel need information on why teachers are leaving and staying, to enable design of policies to enhance retention (Finster, 2015). Teachers leave the teaching profession for a myriad of reasons. Holmes, Parker, and Gibson (2019) suggested that teachers have underperforming schools because of the lack of principal effectiveness, weak administrative structures, and student behaviors. As a result of high teacher turnover rates, schools struggle to make academic gains. According to Finster (2015) teacher attrition has been an issue of concern for policy makers and educational stakeholders for many years. School leaders must improve working conditions and provide support for new teachers in order to reduce the high teacher turnover rates. Distributed LeadershipCreating equitable educational systems to close the opportunity gap is the most significant challenge facing 21st-century education in the United States (Buskey, 2017). Conversely, obstacles arise when principals engage in efforts to improve instruction and close the opportunity gap at their schools. So often, school leaders, are left to work out how to improve instruction and increase student achievement in their schools. As a result, principals have adopted the practice of sharing their responsibilities with other stakeholders in the building. A distributed perspective helps school leaders identify leaders in schools that are willing to work collaboratively to improve teaching and learning. The practice of distributed leadership extends beyond traditional roles and responsibilities to integrate coordinated actions and interactions across the school community (Dimmock, 2012). In turn, these coordinated interactions among school leaders can harness human capital and resources to improve teacher practice, which can have a sustained impact on efforts to close the opportunity gap for diverse student populations (Elfers & Stritikus, 2014). The author further discussed how distributed leadership provides an alternative way of examining the complexities of how multiple individuals and principals engage in the work of improving teacher practice and student learning outcomes. Thus, for distributed leadership to be effective, the district and other stakeholders must support the practice. Teacher leadership is a vital part of school improvement and a critical component of distributed leadership. Teachers are looked upon as leaders in their school without having to be in an administrative role. According to The Center for the Future of Teaching and Learning at WesteEd (The Center), teacher leaders benefit the overall school community in a variety of ways, including improving teacher retention, fostering greater receptivity to teacher learning; increasing the school’s leadership and professional capacity; and fostering productive, collegial relationships( 2017, p. 2).