Leadership Insights

The Best Reasons to Become an Educational Leader

By The Room 241 Team December 2, 2011

Part of the American Dream is the idea that as our careers progress, we move up the ladder of leadership, gaining responsibility and prestige along the way. Earning a master’s degree in educational leadership is a great way for teachers to advance in the realm of education. Here are the best — and worst — reasons to earn a master’s degree as a way to move ahead as an educational leader.

Best reasons to become an educational leader

1. To make a difference

Teaching in a classroom makes a difference and impacts the lives of thousands of students over a single teacher’s career. Attending graduate school for a master’s degree in educational leadership can help teachers move into positions such as department chair, curriculum specialists or administrative positions with the opportunity to affect perhaps tens of thousands of students. When it comes to making a difference for education, graduate school can increase the reach of your influence.

2. A fresh perspective

After awhile, you may begin to feel burned out on your classroom experience but know you still have a passion for education. A master’s degree and a new career track in educational leadership can bring a fresh perspective to your life as an educator and renew your commitment to excellence in education.

3. To become an instructional leader

A master’s degree in educational leadership turns teachers of students into teachers of teachers. This master’s degree prepares you to become a professional facilitator of school culture, including professional development and systemwide innovation. If you’re ready to lead, then this master’s degree will give you the tools to lead successfully.

Worst reasons to become an educational leader

1. To make money

Yes, department chairs, specialists and principals usually make more money than teachers. However, your bottom line shouldn’t be your top reason for going to graduate school. Educational leaders work longer hours, have more responsibility and therefore assume more liability if something goes wrong. If you’re not ready for the increased workload or consequences, then a master’s degree in educational leadership might not be the best choice.

2. You’re sick of teaching

Turning to graduate school when you’re feeling burned out on a career can renew your commitment to teaching. However, if you feel sick and tired of the classroom, how do you know you won’t have the same feelings about educational leadership? A master’s degree in educational leadership often puts you back into the classroom helping teachers, coaching students or planning curriculum.

3. Your principal told you to

It’s great to have cheerleaders in our lives, but the desire to lead needs to come from within. Embarking on a master’s degree in educational leadership will only become a positive experience if you made the decision for yourself. Perhaps you have been told you would make a great leader but until you believe you would make a great leader, you won’t be a successful leader.

If you’re ready to make the leap to leadership, start your master’s degree in educational leadership today from Concordia University-Portland.

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