I got to be admin for a day today, and I was looking forward to sitting in with principals on disciplinary actions and fetching students and maybe fielding some phone calls.
Instead I was tasked with counting every desk in the school.
CSHS is a school of over 2,000 students, just under 100 classrooms, four FLEX labs, and three portables with 6 classrooms.
I was at first, disappointed. I was expecting one thing, but then got another. I had to count the rooms because there was a need to have it done quickly and a simple email request would not be as effective.
So, I set out to do it.
At first, it really was just counting desks, but quickly I realized this was a beautiful opportunity.
I would get to set foot, in an administrative role, in every class on campus in one day. Positive interactions with teachers and students all over campus on their turf, not mine.
It was an amazing day.
I saw several students multiple times- students I did not know struck up conversations with me because they had seen me in their class and I was smiling. I did joke that I was doing this and it might be a "prank the sub admin" thing, which was a hit.
But at the end of the day, I had more than 14,000 steps- I had an insight to my campus that is fresh and new. I got to joke with students and teachers and they got to see me as someone approachable. Instead of sitting in discipline meetings, I got to be in a place to remind me why we do it.
I’m not an admin yet, but I learned today that being in the classroom will give you the fuel you need for those tougher interactions.
So I challenge my administrator friends: Set aside one day this month, get an admin sub if you need to- and go to every class on campus. Count desks if you need to, but be seen in the classroom with a smile and no agenda other than getting to know your school better.
It will change your perspective and that is a good step to take.