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Instructional Supervisory Plan: Analysis of Supervisory Problems

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Supervision can also be defined as administration, command, giving directions and being responsible for the outcome. This term is mostly used to refer to people who wield certain powers like teachers, administrators, managers and many more. Supervision issues therefore involve the problems, responsibilities, which are expected of those in positions of power. Some of these issues are intellect as well as education backgrounds of both those in power and those governed, issues involving remunerations and benefits, technology, competition, public expectations and communication breakdown. These issues vary with the kind of business that a supervisor is involved in or is supervising.

Some of the supervisory problems are:
1. The fear or being uneasy during Teacher Observation. Teachers often could not work naturally and smoothly when the principal or somebody is observing them. The presence of the principal triggers the different emotions of teachers that lead to being uneasy and could not focus in teaching. But if nobody is watching, teachers could teach to their utmost ability and best. What’s the problem about observation? I guess some teachers have the wrong notion about observation, at which only aims for teacher improvement and not for blaming or looking for errors. And one thing is, on unannounced observations, teachers tend to be more nervous when they are not ready to be observed. That’s really true. If you are ready for that day, you have all prepared the things you need to teach, then nothing to worry about. Just teach regardless if someone or no one observes.

The most important thing about procedure is how people feel about what is being done. In classroom observation, everything the principal does should be motivated by interest, sincerity, kindliness, and professional purpose. If the principal’s motives are not of the highest, no rule of procedure will help him arouse a co-operative response in teacher and pupils. If his motives are genuinely good, then a little clumsiness now and then will not estrange those whom he proposes to help. The principal should arrange to be in the classroom before the lesson begins. Teachers and pupils usually expect a smile and a word of greeting, though a lengthy talk is out of place. The principal then goes to the back of the room, where he will not distract the pupils, and examines the lesson plan which the teacher has given him. The pupil records and a seating plan are also there, as well as the text and manual. The principal’s attention should be focused upon what the pupils are doing and what the teacher is doing, and not upon any mannerisms of traits peculiar to the teacher.

The principal should be alert to what is going on, since both teacher and children react favorably to a responsive observer. A passive observer is annoying, as is one who seems to be oblivious of everything that is going on about him. During the class, the lesson plan can be used as a guide in following the presentation of the teacher and the text. Pupil records help in interpreting the pupils’ answers and activities. It is usually best not to take any notes during the lesson, because note-taking seem to make most teachers uneasy. However, if the notes are shown to the teacher after the lesson and discussed with him, few teachers mind note taking during observation. Mental notes are necessary, however, as guides to the conference following the lesson. Particularly one should notice how the teacher realizes the objectives of the lesson, and how the lesson leads on to the next day’s work. Should the principal “take over” when the lesson seems to be going badly? The teacher is making mistakes in presentation of factual information; or he is floundering and not able to get his presentation across; or pupils are noisy and inattentive, or merely listless. The principal may be tempted to take over the class, and show the teacher how it should be done. Except in extreme cases, this temptation should be resisted. If the teacher is unorganized during observation, he probably is at other times also, and intervening will not remedy the condition.

More good will result in the long run by an analytical conference afterward, and perhaps a planned demonstration lesson. When a teacher is ineffective, the rule here is the same as for other problem situations: When in doubt, do the kindly thing. Exposing a teacher before his class will not improve his teaching; instead it will remove one prop he may have counted on―the principal’s regard for him. An extremely weak teacher should be removed from service, but only after a consistent supervisory program has failed to develop him adequately. So, in visiting a classroom, the principal should consider himself an observer, a visitor, and should not have a mental set which says, “If he can’t do better than that, he should be shown.” By all means, in the conference following the lesson, the principal should be frank in his appraisal of weakness, and should make specific plans for helping the teacher. When the lesson is over, the principal again nods to the teacher, perhaps makes a single pleasant remark to the class, and leaves the room unobtrusively. If the lesson is running overtime, the principal should feel free to leave at the scheduled time, but without interrupting the class, if possible.

2. Discipline and dedication among his subordinates. There are some instances that teachers tend to neglect their duties due to certain inevitable circumstances and to the extent that it affects their job.

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