As superintendent, I see the hiring of principals—and then the growth of those principals—as the most important element of my job. They affect the climate and the culture in their buildings, first by choosing what teachers to hire and then by supporting the growth of those teachers. Directly and indirectly, they set the tone for the students who enter those schools every day. While I am the supervisor and evaluator of the principals in our district, as often as possible, I attempt to assume a stance as a coach and partner to the principals, because their growth is too important to leave solely to a supervision and evaluation process. In our district, the commitment to coaching is reflected in the idea of "confident vulnerability," which is supported by a focus on self-reflection and leading by example..
- Paul Freeman, Superintendent of Guilford Schools (CT) for EdWeek.