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Remember those public service reminders that played in the 70’s and 80’s, designed to remind parents that “Hey, it’s late! We hope you know exactly where your children are!”?

In 2013, most educators are deeply committed to learning where our students are when they arrive at our classroom doors. We administer formative assessments to tell us their current skills and strengths. We do ice-breakers, distribute simple surveys, and ask questions about their lives. When parents arrive at Open House, we learn the quirks and joys of each child, and know better where these precious young people are in relation to where they’ll need to be by June.

As educational leaders, however, we often forget to ask, right about now: “Do you know where your teachers are?” At this time of year, reality hits – for the novice and the veteran educator alike:

The initial excitement of a new year has faded. We begin to realize what our next 8 months look like, and sometimes, they appear daunting. Whether it’s the transition to Common Core State Standards, a new teacher evaluation system, students whose challenges are new and different, or a personal matter that’s blurring one’s professional focus.

What does this mean for leaders? We’ve got to know now where our teachers are, so we can support and sustain them through the year.

Join What’s Right tomorrow to read Part 2 of “Do You Know Where Your Teachers Are?” from Guest Blogger Melissa Matarazzo, where she shares simple tools available for leaders to learn where their teachers are (at any time in the school year).

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MatarazzoSpecial thanks to Guest Blogger Melissa Matarazzo for authoring this post. Melissa Matarazzo is a Research Fellow at Studer Education and a doctoral candidate in the Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Urban Superintendents Program. Melissa most recently served as the Executive Director for Achievement and Accountability in the Charleston County (SC) School District.  Prior to her work in South Carolina, Melissa served as a middle school principal in the Peabody (MA) Public Schools, and as an 8th grade teacher and assistant principal in the Derry (NH) Cooperative School District. Melissa has served as a supervisor of teacher interns at the College of Charleston, SC and an adjunct instructor at American International College in Springfield, MA. Follow Melissa on Twitter at @LrngLdr.

Our mission at Studer Education is to provide students with a great place to learn, teachers with a great place to teach, and parents with confidence that their children are getting a great education. Visit us online at http://studereducation.com. Studer Education is a division of Studer Group, ranked for the fifth straight year on the Best Small and Medium Workplaces by Great Place to Work® and a recipient of the 2010 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award.