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Starting the Year Off Right

As we approach the start of another school year, there are many staff members who play a role in the success of the school. A CLI Model district has designated leadership teams with specific roles.  The Curriculum Coordinating Council (CCC) is responsible for making academic recommendations for the district, while Subject Area Committees (SACs) are grade level and/or course representatives designing curriculum, instructional plans, and assessments for a content area.  Please review the revised checklist to ensure all groups are aware and involved in the process. (Feel free to make your own working copy of this Google Doc checklist, or download the PDF form.) In addition, here are five simple things to think about when starting a new school year:

photo from Unsplash.com by Glenn Carstens-Peters

  1. New job, position, or responsibility. Keep in mind that you don’t need to know everything. You DO need to be resourceful and willing to find out the answers.
  2. Shared Calendar. Use the Google Calendar to schedule important meetings dates. Select the option that allows you to receive a reminder message. This can be helpful when meetings are determined weeks in advance and when you have several meetings to organize throughout the year.
  3. Review and provide support for ESSA requirements. This is the first year for the implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).  Make sure to research the requirements for your state, outline the expectations required by your district, and determine where you need to focus your energies to support the changes.
  4. Setting goals. Identify areas that you would like to improve upon and set some goals for the year. If you are an administrator, it might be beneficial to meet with your teachers individually to provide assistance in goal setting.  That doesn’t mean you set goals for them but help them identify their strengths, create realistic goals, and discuss how they can achieve their goals using their strengths.
  5. Talk less, listen more. Vicki Williams, a senior vice-president for NBC Universal, stated, “Leaders who do not listen will find they have people with nothing to say.” If you are facilitating a meeting and state your opinion before others have a chance to weigh in, this may influence how the team chooses to proceed. If you are afraid you will forget your point, write it down and continue to wait.  Your silence may allow an even better idea to emerge from the group or you actually might think of something else to add, too! Facilitators who allow the participants to speak a majority of the time are more likely to have supported group decisions.

Curriculum Coordinating Council (CCC) Checklist


Subject Area Committees (SAC) Checklist


Teacher Checklist

District Office and Building Principal Checklist


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