Academic Leadership and 21 Century Challenges

Dr. Raavee Tripathi

Principal, Sumitra Modern School, Sitapur, UP

Although the expectation of 21 century has solely focused on communication skills, written and oral, the reality of curriculum in K–12 education remains firmly rooted in the traditions of past centuries. Communication is as primordial as our biological existence. Today is a trend of presentation and promotion rather the number of certificates and medals a candidate has. There are three essential challenges for education leaders who are grappling with the challenges of fostering 21st century skills: Enhancing team building and collaborative environment, the teaching gap, the leadership quality, innovation network and envision strategy.

It is said, children do what they observe. It is not only teacher's but Principal’s action within the social, institutional and personal contexts that affects the instructional process and institutional climate. Students’ outcome and school climate is universally proportionate and most of the percentage is contributed by Principal. To visualise the emerging problems and future challenges and to adopt innovative strategies for both academic and administrative context is the prerequisite. To wear the hat of all responsibilities is never appreciated. It calls for delegation of responsibilities and decentralisation of activities, building of team spirit, trust and ensuring accountability. A leader is not only a decision maker but needs new skills, the ability to develop a shared vision and must foster more systematic pattern of thinking.

Today, the role of a leader is critical. Teaching has become the most challenging profession. Respecting the uniqueness of every child is an important step towards uplifting entire youth. We need to follow six ‘E’ approaches to education- Engage, Excite, Explore, Explain, Expand and Evaluate. Successful school improvement requires establishing a clear educational vision and a shared institutional mission, knowing how well the school is accomplishing that mission, identifying areas of improvement, developing plans to change educational activities and programs effectively with an active partnership of parent as an important stakeholders.

Building team and being motivated to motivate the entire team is the biggest challenge and the prerequisite. Building team and being motivated to motivate team is a continuous process.

In the era of Artificial Intelligence (AI) it is the urgent need to realise the importance of reach oneself in order to prove human teachers are better than machine teachers.

Discipline is the lubricant that smoothens the machinery of the entire system. Self-discipline is the best discipline. To inculcate self –discipline in students leader need to set example first which can further carried out by teachers through action.

Dr. Raavee Tripathi

Principal, Sumitra Modern School, Sitapur, UP