#67 – Positive Schools, Positive Teachers, Positive Students

Punam SaxenaUncategorizedLeave a Comment


21 April 2021

Teachers and administrators are the true backbones of our education system. Each day they head to work to impart knowledge, create a safe environment, and motivate their students. It takes heart and passion to teach. And a positive work environment creates a sense of belonging and desire to invest in student success.

In this episode, we have the distinct honor of speaking with Dr. Danny Steele, principal at Pell City High School in Alabama. Danny’s positive approach to helping his faculty and staff navigate teaching trickles down to his students. Sometimes there are big achievements to celebrate, but Danny shares that even the small ones are important because we never know how they will impact the student.

Danny shares that parents have a stake in student success and provides several strategies for parents to partner with schools to ensure their child is gaining the skills they need.

This episode is eye-opening, student-focused, and teacher and parent-approved.

Prior to Danny’s current position, he has served as an Assistant Professor of Instructional Leadership, principal, assistant principal, teacher, and coach. In 2005, Steele was recognized as the “Secondary Assistant Principal of the Year” for the state of Alabama. And in 2016, he was recognized as Alabama’s “Secondary Principal of the Year.” He has presented at numerous state and national conferences and spoken in school districts around the country. He has written two books with Todd Whitaker which were released in 2019. Steele has an undergraduate degree in History from Covenant College (Lookout Mountain, GA); he has an M.A. in History from the University of Alabama, Birmingham; he has an Educational Specialist degree in Educational Administration and an Educational Doctorate degree in Educational Leadership – both from Samford University. He resides with his wife and three children in Birmingham, Alabama. Follow Danny on Twitter at @steelethoughts and he can be reached at http://www.steelethoughts.com/.

Time Stamps:
0:24 – Introduction
3:58 – Danny’s Book, The Total Teacher
4:39 – Reflect on things that matter
6:12 – Teaching is not a hobby, it’s a profession
7:31 – Teachers want to work where they are valued
10:28 – Parent involvement/engagement
11:31 – Shared values between parents and schools
13:59 – Some parents feel alienated walking into schools
16:21 – Parent reaching out to teachers
19:17 – 100 positive phone calls in 100 days
25:27 – Challenges of managing overwhelmed students during the pandemic
33:45 – Students re-socializing into schools
36:19 – Students need interaction
37:27 – Words of wisdom/closing

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