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kinderbug kinderbug is offline
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How to Win No Nonsense Principal Over?
Old 02-04-2009, 02:50 PM
 
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The Principal at my school is very no-nonsense and I need to win him over. The reason is that I want good references when I try to leave and if I work at this school next year I do not want to be on his bad side. The problem is that he is very no-nonsense. He is not the type you can schmooze unless you are one of his "elite" teachers and guess what? I'm not. I am new to the school and was supposed to be somewhere else. He knows I am planning to not return next year. Lately he has seemed more and more annoyed with me. That's not good! I really need a good reference from him and I want the rest of this year to be peaceful. He is so critical of everything I do and does not seem to trust me with anything. It has been a tough year and this just makes it harder. He has been so short with me lately and at a recent meeting we had with him he has made "overt" but underhanded comments about "dealing with change", being "here for the kids",etc. These are directed at me as if he is trying to get back at me for wanting to leave.

How do I get on his good side? I don't want to bring gifts or kiss up, either. What can I do? I don't think talking to him will work....like I said he is no nonsense and he doesn't care about hurt feelings.


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Old 02-04-2009, 04:06 PM
 
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Ok, so I may be going out on a limb, but I think you may be looking at this wrong. If he is no-nonsense and doesn't "schmooze" then why are you trying to fit a square peg into a round hole? E-mail him if you aren't comfortable talking to him and ask straight out if you can use him as a reference. Do you need a letter of rec or a phone reference? Either way, approach it as a no-nonsense professional. Good luck!
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Old 02-04-2009, 06:48 PM
 
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I wouldn't email asking him if he's giving you a reference until you know what's going on. Maybe his comments weren't directed towards you. I kow I've been in a similar position before and felt like every little thing was directed towards me. If you're comfortable doing so, schedule a meeting and discuss how your year is going, what improvements he's seen or what he feels would benefit you in working with your students. Harder to do, I know, but maybe he would view it as you making efforts if he really is directing those comments towards you. But I could be way of base too Sorry, I'm not much help, but you do have others who've felt like they were in similar situations here.
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Fly low
Old 02-06-2009, 11:28 AM
 
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I would keep a low profile. Another tip would be to look as if you are buddy buddy with someone the principal does like. Positive association is always good. If you are nervous ask the vp or other admin for a reference.
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Let the data show
Old 02-18-2009, 10:50 PM
 
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I would teach my students and let the data be my calling card.
The best way to win your principal over is to do the best job in your classroom. When it is time to ask for a reference, you can ask with a copy of your stats. Collaborate with your grade level. Be on time to work. Meet deadlines. Keep a professional air...no venting to other teachers...schools are small communities.... Word travels quickly.

If it were me, I'd be interested in finding out the basis of his criticism. Is it based on facts? Heresay? Where is the mistrust rooted? Is it fabricated? How are you dealing with change? What makes you think those comments were directed at you?


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I'd agree
Old 02-21-2009, 02:57 PM
 
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I'd agree with the no venting to colleagues. And I do mean NO venting. Even to people you consider close friends who would never repeat a word. Somehow, someway, principals hear everything and I do mean everything. I'm not sure how, I just know they do. I'm serious. It doesn't matter if you only talk to one person who you are extremely close with and only outside of work, trust me your principal will still find out. It's weird.
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Old 02-21-2009, 05:04 PM
 
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I agree with museumuse. What would I do? Be early to meetings and take notes and make eye contact. Be at your duty always, offer to help with serious things -- like standardized test preparations. No venting, no negative, no laughting when others do, etc. If you think he doesn't like you, you might also ask for a meeting. Tell him you feel that he doesn't like you, and you'd like some suggestions for how he thinks you can improve. then take those suggestions without a bunhc of chit chat and improve.

After a couple of months, ask him for a reference letter.

Good luck.
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