What do you think is a school principal’s first responsibility?
Among the many duties that principals have, the most important is the broad task to create a positive climate that is hospitable to education. All aspects of the job, whether logistical or managerial in nature, should serve the end of creating a culture of intellectual and moral maturation and learning.
In other words, education should not occur despite the state of the school, but rather because of the institution of an environment in which learning is made most probable. You cannot make education happen by force, but you can create an environment where it almost certainly will. Similarly, you cannot force a garden to produce fruit, but through research and hard work, you can cultivate conditions where growth is most likely.
So, where exactly does student safety fall into the job of principals?
Some have argued that safety is the primary responsibility of principals, but is that going too far? Schools aren’t built primarily to keep students safe; they’re built as institutions of learning. Safety is, however, a vital concern, inasmuch as a culture of education greatly suffers when students feel that their safety is threatened, whether physically or emotionally.
The importance of safety in education has grown increasingly as a concern for principals in recent years, probably as a combined result of the development of school shootings, the advancement of technology as a means of harassment and abuse, among other reasons. According to the Project Tomorrow Speak Up 2016, in 2010, 25% of principals said that student safety concerns were pressing enough to keep them awake at night, but 37% of middle school principals and 34% of high school principals now indicate that student safety is pressing enough of a concern.
Gaggle Safety Management aligns with the goal principals have to create the conditions for learning by providing the resources to leverage great online tools like G Suite for Education, Office 365 and more and removing the safety risks they pose to students on their own.
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