Welcoming a new principal is an exciting time for any school community. The appointment of a new educator offers the opportunity for fresh ideas and educational philosophies to be introduced into the school community. When a school undergoes a personnel exchange of an essential role, it is crucial to offer school members transparency with detailed information on the transition. This can be done by effectively introducing the new faculty member to the community.
The process of introducing a new principal involves multiple steps and preparations. The school should be ready to answer any questions or concerns that parents may have, assuring that their students’ education remains well cared for. Providing an abundance of information and details on the role transition in a transparent fashion can be achieved with an announcement sent to members of the school, as well as an assembly where students and faculty can learn about their new principal on a more personal level.
Properly introducing a new principal to students, parents and faculty is important for a seamless shift in the role. The process should be done in a professional, yet exciting manner—it is a time of celebration and change.
Conducting an informational assembly is a great option for keeping students and faculty up-to-date with the role. An assembly should be announced ahead of time, and the school should plan on what will be discussed during the presentation. The assembly should include the principal introducing themself and speaking on their excitement to start the role. Information on the principal’s previous experience and dedication to quality education should also be included, as well as a question portion that allows students to be involved in the transition.
While it is imperative to introduce a new principal to students and faculty, it also essential to keep parents informed about the change in faculty. This can be done by sending out a professionally written announcement to the parents and school community members, including a personal welcome message from the principal.
A welcome message will help answer any questions that may arise during the transition, and it gives the new principal the opportunity to personally introduce themself and speak on their excitement to begin the role. A new principal announcement sent to school members should be composed with a cheerful, yet sophisticated tone.
The announcement should include information on when the principal will begin the new role and express the school’s enthusiasm to welcome the principal to the community.
The announcement should also include a personal letter or message written by the new principal. The principal’s letter will act as a first impression to the students, parents and faculty, so it is important to include plenty of information in an appreciative tone to ensure the community is comfortable with the transition.
Content within the welcome message can include details regarding the principal’s background experience in education. It should express their eagerness to take on the role, their admiration of the school and their understanding of the importance of the role. The letter can also feature the principal’s values or philosophy on education. Lastly, it is also beneficial for the principal to deliver admiration of former principal and their management of the role.
Below is an example of a new principal welcome message from John Brett, following his appointment to the position at The British School of Beijing, Sanlitun in August 2018.
I am extremely grateful to David Laird for giving me this opportunity to introduce myself to you. In taking up the baton of Principal from David later this year, I realise that I have very big shoes to fill and I am keen to do all I can to ensure as smooth and efficient handover as possible.
My visit to BSB Sanlitun in January confirmed to me that I will be joining a vibrant and dynamic school community where all the students from pre-school and Early Years through to the final year students in Year 6 are valued as individuals and given outstanding opportunities to discover and develop their talents and interests. In talking to some of the teachers during the selection process, I was particularly moved by their passion for the school and their determination to be strong advocates for the pupils in their care.
I have been involved in education since the 1980s and a great deal has changed during that time. For schools, and for parents, technology and the impact that it has made in the world of work, for example, has meant that we have had to re-think our ideas about the kinds of skills and capacities that our children are going to need if they are to thrive in the future. Creativity, assessing risk and reward, problem-solving, invention and collaboration are now all central themes in a progressive teaching and learning environment and I have seen much evidence of these at BSB Sanlitun, as well as at the other Nord Anglia schools I have had the opportunity to visit. I look forward to exploring and developing such ideas over the coming years with the talented and dedicated teaching team at BSB.
One thing has not changed in the last 30 years however, and that is the need for a school to have a strong and shared set of values by which it operates and goes about its daily business. Whatever the future may hold, kindness, respect, tolerance, sense of humour and service to others will always be the hallmarks of a sophisticated and progressive society. I feel honoured to have this wonderful opportunity of working with you, the teaching and support staff, and of course the students of BSB Sanlitun, and very much look forward to meeting you in person.”
While it is important to introduce a principal to the members of a school, it is just as important to welcome the principal to the new position so that they feel appreciated and ready to join a wonderful school community. A fantastic way for any school member to embrace their new principal into the community is to reach out with a personal message. This allows the school member to introduce themselves. If possible, it is also a kind gesture to welcome the new principal to the school with an in-person meeting for a more intimate introduction and conversation.
With the right approach, introducing and welcoming a new principal to a school community can be a seamless and exciting process for all involved. For information on the principal, teachers and job openings at The British International School of Beijing, Sanlitun, visit our website here.