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Building a Positive School Culture after a Pandemic

As the pandemic dies down, students and teachers are preparing to return to campuses. Some are feeling enthusiastic and eager to return, and some are feeling fearful and worried. While we all hope that everyone could have a positive outlook on returning, we know this is not the case.

Some teachers and families are still highly concerned about COVID. Families are stressed from the aftermath of COVID on their physical and mental health, finances, business, and more. Mandates are coming down from the federal and state level putting more stress and pressure on teachers to “fix” students with accelerated instruction. This creates a very high-demand work environment on top of the personal stressors teachers may already have in their lives.

All of this puts a heavy weight on leaders’ shoulders. Leaders may be asking themselves, how can I create a high-expectations, solution-driven, student-focused school community without hurting the culture and climate of our school? Leaders are looking for solutions to build a positive school culture and re-build the sense of community that may have been lost with remote/virtual learning this last school year while ensuring students’ success.

What we know from research is that building a positive, collaborative school community starts at the top. So, here are my top 5 easy reads for campus leaders to become the change agent in their school community to create a high-expectations, solution-driven, student-focused, positive school culture.

Top 5 Easy Reads

  1. Hacking School Culture by Angela Stockman, Ellen Feig Gray (purchase link)
  2. What Great Principals Do Differently by Todd Whitaker (purchase link)
  3. The No Complaining Rule by John Gordon (purchase link)
  4. Lemons to Lemonade by Robert J. Garmston, Diane Zimmerman (purchase link)
  5. The Culture Code by Daniel Coyle (purchase link)

State Plans for Accelerating Student Learning


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