Principals can improve their teachers’ classroom practice, either directly or indirectly by arranging resources, to support improvement. However, there is limited information about how principals spend their time. A snapshot from the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) provides insights on workday time allocations for principals in 100 schools.
Key findings in the snapshot include the following:
Principals spent more time on tasks other than providing instructional support.
- Other tasks occupied a majority of principals’ time.
- Principals spent more than one-third of their time on instructional support to teachers on average, split fairly evenly between direct and indirect support.
- However, the amount of time spent on direct instructional support varied considerably across principals.
- Principals provided less feedback and indirect instructional support to teachers later in the school year.
Principals with elementary school teaching experience reported providing more extensive direct instructional support. And according to teachers, they provided more helpful and actionable direct instructional support.
- Principals who had prior elementary school teaching experience provided more direct instructional support and less indirect support.
- Consistent with the finding that principals who had prior elementary school teaching experience reported spending more time providing direct instructional support, teachers generally reported receiving more frequent direct instructional support from their principal if their principal had experience as an elementary school teacher.
- Teachers were more likely to report that their principal helped them identify areas for improvement and provided action steps for improvement if their principal had experience as an elementary school teacher.
Time principals spent providing instructional support was similar, regardless of other principal, teacher, and school characteristics.
- Time principals spent providing instructional support did not differ based on other principal characteristics or behaviors.
- Nor did instructional support time differ based on staff teaching experience or school characteristics.
For more, see: https://econpapers.repec.org/scripts/redir.pf?u=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.mathematica.org%2F-%2Fmedia%2Fpublications%2Fpdfs%2Feducation%2F2021%2Fncee2021_012_time_to_lead.pdf;h=repec:mpr:mprres:dd82cab27ae14f6bbe725b18b3f7a384