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Gardening in the Minefield

A Survival Guide for School Administrators

By Laurel Schmidt

For anyone in school leadership—or anyone who hopes to be—this book is a must read. Seasoned educator Laurel Schmidt tells it like it is about a principal's daily life. From the nitty gritty of hiring, evaluating, and firing staff, to navigating the intricacies of school politics, and managing crises in the glare of the media, she provides a long overdue tool to take control of your life as a school administrator.

Schmidt combines insight and humor with use-this-now practicality as she details creative strategies for surviving the daily grind, while honing your vision of a school that works.
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For anyone in school leadership—or anyone who hopes to be—this book is a must read. Seasoned educator Laurel Schmidt tells it like it is about a principal's daily life. From the nitty gritty of hiring, evaluating, and firing staff, to navigating the intricacies of school politics, and managing crises in the glare of the media, she provides a long overdue tool to take control of your life as a school administrator.

Schmidt combines insight and humor with use-this-now practicality as she details creative strategies for surviving the daily grind, while honing your vision of a school that works. Follow her lead and learn how to:
  • plant the seeds for your vision and maintain your course
  • weed out the worst, hire the best
  • nurture productive relationships with parents, board members, and staff
  • cultivate effective strategies for improving instruction
  • root out efforts to undermine your leadership
  • stamp out stress with simple techniques that work at work
  • master the communication glut-email, voicemail, and the in-box.
Gardening in the Minefield offers a refreshingly candid map through the landscape of leadership. As Schmidt confirms, it is a garden out there—if you know where to step.

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