Principal AGNES RITA SEBASTIAN
SMB Matric Higher Secondary School
Birthday: 08th April
Place of Birth: Chennai
How did you feel on the first day being School Principal/Leader:
As an aspirant in my field I always looked forward to accomplish my dream: ‘A leader to shape the future generation of the world’. I accepted my position as Principal after a decade of service as a vice principal in the same school. I felt I was the person responsible to prove the truth of the old adage ‘children are the most important assets of a nation’. I could shape them into responsible citizens of the world. So I started focusing on the holistic development of children in all their classroom ventures.
The best thing about being a Teacher-Leader:
The best thing about being a teacher – leader is the ability to develop leadership qualities outside the classroom atmosphere; promotion of the talents and potential of teachers, students and to a greater extent parents toward achieving common educational aims. Being leaders in our field directly impacts leadership roles. This leadership gives complete freedom for decision making pertaining to the school organ.
What are the traits of an effective Principal:
The traits of an effective Principal are the possession of high energy level with an undeterred aim to accomplish ones goals. One must be assertive and have emotional stability. One must be precise in social interactions. One must have a strong sense of ethics towards work to build integrity in the organization. One must also be very careful with making decisions or determining specific actions. To be able to place yourself in the other person’s shoes, I would say is the best trait of an effective principal. Please describe the role you feel parents should play in the operation of the school :
Parents nowadays refrain from involvement in schooling. This is an important issue that results in the absence of good education for their children which begins way ahead at home. My school motto is: Parent is the first teacher, teacher is the second parent. Parents should be committed towards shaping their own children and participate in their children’s schooling. At home parents should provide the basic care and guidance with love towards the upbringing of their children. They must be abreast of all the information pertaining to the education provided to their children by the school.
When you visit a classroom, what are the first things you look for as signs that the classroom is an effective learning place:
The strategies, I would say, that determine the classroom as a place of effective learning are the explanations given by the teachers to help the students imbibe the topic. This involves knowing what the students understand and then forging connections between what is prescribed and what is new. The interaction of students with their teacher proves the compatibility of the learning atmosphere of the classroom as a whole.
What is your vision of Special Education:
Special education is education that has to be imparted to children with special needs. It deals with the preparation of those children to participate and pursue their learning towards a productive and meaningful life in the society. Special education must also strive in helping students to be self sufficient and self-supporting. Special education must be tailored to the needs of the children.
What is your view on e-learning:
Today’s fast developing nation has based its learning on computers. e-learning gives a child various options that result in exploring the unknown and within minutes can facilitate easy learning of concepts. e-learning saves time and money and brings to their desktop effective learning materials that boost their interest.
How to make inclusion a Reality:
Being a committed person to lead forth an institution that bears fruit for the nation, I am open to inclusion which is a key part of the development of learning around the world. We can move forward and work with children, parents and staff who play a major role in shaping the policy that is laid forth. Any kind of inclusion that contributes to the betterment of the school must be made a reality. This kind of inclusion will contribute a great deal towards the growth of the children.
The most touching things that School Children have done for you:
Many issues have made me feel proud about my children. The place that a teacher occupies in a child’s heart can never be compensated with the monetary satisfaction. Sundar, a 16 year old boy, fights all odds in the family and perseveres because I have helped him in his academics. When the laurels he attained garlanded him, he leaves his family behind and surrenders them to me who he says is more than his mother – what else can be more touching than this.
‘Children may forget what teachers have said but they will never forget how you make them feel’.
Best conference/seminar that you have attended:
World – Class School & PRIDE Personal Responsibility in Delivering Excellence organised by Confluence Training & Development. It was one of the best workshops I have attended.
Your favourite Book:
My favourite book is Who Moved My Cheese by Spencer Johnson, an amazing way to deal with change in your life and work. It is a book every leader must possess and read.
What are the major qualities you seek in a new teacher:
Dedication to their relationship with children of today. A teacher must be accountable and compassionate. In today’s world we need teachers who are selfless.
One piece of advice that you want to give to new teachers:
I would advise the new teachers to aspire to be teachers first and foremost. They must have the ability to empower their students and help them imbibe values from education. They must be able to pursue their own interest and incorporate strategies that are challenging in today’s world. Teachers must consider work as worship. Great teachers must have a living mission. It is true that only a great teacher inspires.