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Influence & Integrity the Essence of Leadership Series: Integrity

classroom management education consultant educational leadership educational leadership programs keynote speaker leaders in education leadership coaching leadership for educational equity leadership styles in education motivational speaker professional development public speaking sel social emotional learning stand tall steve steve bollar Nov 04, 2023

In a world where leaders are continuously scrutinized and held to high standards, integrity stands at the forefront of effective leadership. 


Understanding Integrity

Integrity is a set of beliefs, values, and actions others can depend on. It's about more than just doing the right thing when no one is watching, but doing the right thing consistently in the spotlight. Integrity is a core foundation that guides leaders in their decision-making process, whether in the classroom or the administrative office. Consistency is critical to show your level of integrity. 

Integrity is significant in teaching. Students are observant and look to their teachers for consistency and reliability. As teachers, it's crucial to instill values and integrity in students while exemplifying these principles in the classroom.


Integrity in the Classroom

Building integrity in the classroom is a process that takes time. It takes at least six to eight weeks to develop a habit. When students begin a new school year, they have yet to learn of their teachers' integrity or expectations. Thus, teachers must work consistently to establish trust and a framework for integrity within the classroom. Students need to see consistency, routines, and patterns over time to understand what's expected of them. 

The first few weeks of the school year are vital for building the foundation of trust and expectations. Classroom management works best with relationships and integrity. Teachers must communicate their expectations clearly and work on building relationships with students. It's a process that requires effort but ultimately leads to an environment where high-integrity behavior becomes the norm.

GANG, hope is not a strategy! School leaders must consistently and continuously state, model, and reinforce what is respected and valued. Be sure to check out this blog post on the importance of Vision, Values, and Starting Strong.



Integrity in Educational Leadership

Leaders, whether in the classroom or at the administrative level, must cultivate and protect their integrity. Here are four key actions that leaders can take to maintain and enhance their integrity:

  1. Keeping Promises:
    Leaders should strive to keep their promises, especially for significant commitments. If you break a promise, it will be remembered.  How do you want to be remembered? 
  2. Speaking Up for Beliefs:
    Leaders must communicate their values and principles clearly to establish a consistent framework. It all comes down to what you respect and value, and be sure to communicate it clearly! People will depend on you.
  3. Being Fair:
    Leaders need to practice fairness both in decision-making and in balancing their workload. When you make fair decisions for others and yourself, integrity rises.  Don’t let teacher guilt lead you to burnout, and we need healthy and happy teachers.   
  4. Doing What You Say:
    Leaders must follow through on their commitments and actions. Show up when you say you will, and let your actions speak for themselves. 

Integrity doesn't happen overnight but over time. It's not about making big promises but about delivering consistently on your values and beliefs.  This straightforward approach works for children, teachers, parents, and administrators! New administrators need to work on communication and proving their level of integrity in the first six months. 

When a new administrator or leader enters a school, their actions and consistency are essential in developing a sense of trust and integrity within the school community. Over time, their character and integrity become evident to those they lead.

Folks, integrity is the cornerstone of leadership. It's not a single act but a collection of consistent behaviors, decisions, and values. In education, whether in the classroom or at the administrative level, integrity plays a pivotal role in establishing trust, building relationships, and creating a positive learning environment. By adhering to principles of integrity, leaders set an example that resonates with students, teachers, and the entire school community.

Megan is a third-grade teacher, co-founder of IntegratED, educational speaker, and a Within Our Ranks success story. (More on that to come.) She works to innovate classrooms to bring experiences for students to learn and grow authentically with hands-on experiences. This powerhouse team of educational speakers connected at a conference. 

Within Our Ranks

Are you looking to make a real impact in the field of education? Do you want to join a community of passionate educators and take your career to the next level? 

This an exclusive opportunity that you will want to take advantage of. It's called Within Our Ranks, and it's your ticket to making a real difference in the world of education. It's more than just a program; it's a transformative experience for educators who aspire to be professional speakers and make their voices heard.

Here's the deal: "Within Our Ranks" is an intensive training program that equips educators (with at least ten years of K-12 experience) with the skills and knowledge they need to step into the world of professional speaking, training, and consulting. It's a chance to unlock your full potential and share your insights with the world.

Think about it for a moment. Have you ever felt like you have a message that could change the lives of educators or students? Do you dream of inspiring others, but you need help figuring out where to start? "Within Our Ranks" is your golden opportunity to turn your dreams into reality.

This program isn't just theoretical; it's hands-on and practical. The Within Our Ranks Team will provide the tools, strategies, and insights you need to become a confident and impactful educational speaker. What's even better is that you'll be joining a community of like-minded educators who share your passion for making a difference. It's a year-long journey that covers a wide range of topics, from crafting powerful messages to marketing yourself as a speaker and everything in between. It's not just about speaking; it's about creating lasting change in the education field.

Within Our Ranks is hosting a summit at the end of January in Atlanta. It's the perfect opportunity to dip your toes in and see what the program is all about. This summit is a chance for you to connect with Steven Bollar and other educators ready to make a change.

Space is limited for the summit because this differs from your typical, overcrowded conference. Within Our Ranks focuses on quality over quantity. I want to give every attendee personalized attention to ensure you get the most out of the experience. So, if you're serious about making a change, don't wait. Head to for more information. Join us for this incredible event and take the first step toward becoming a professional educational speaker. Your journey to impact and influence starts here. 


10- Minute Classroom Openers

Do you want to transform your classroom into a lively, engaging, and connected space in five to ten minutes? 

Picture this: You walk into your classroom, a room filled with eager students. You want to avoid diving straight into the day's lesson; you want to set the tone, create a positive atmosphere, and build critical student-teacher relationships. But how do you do that in just five to ten minutes?

Ten Minute Classroom Openers is a game-changer. Co-authored by Steve and Tina Dietrich, a seasoned counselor, this book is like a treasure chest of brilliant ideas for the classroom. It's not just any book; it's your secret weapon for nurturing a welcoming, inclusive, and exciting classroom environment. It is packed with quick, fun, and interactive activities that you can effortlessly incorporate at the beginning of each class. They are designed to get everyone settled, focused, and ready to learn. It's not just about teaching subject matter; it's about fostering that all-important connection between you and your students.

Have you ever felt that Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) is a heavy, time-consuming endeavor? Think again! "Ten Minute Classroom Openers" proves that creating a positive and supportive classroom atmosphere doesn't have to be a burden. These activities are designed to be quick and easy to implement. You don't need preparation or materials. Just open the book, pick an activity, and you're good to go!

And here's the best part: this book is incredibly user-friendly. The font size is large so you won't need your reading glasses. You can simply open it, read an activity, and immediately engage your students. It's like having a classroom transformation at your fingertips.

These openers are not just about warming up the room; they're about warming up hearts and minds. They're about creating a classroom culture where students feel valued, engaged, and excited to learn.

So, if you're ready to make your classroom the kind of place where students can't wait to come and learn, you need to get your hands on "Ten Minute Classroom Openers." It's available on Amazon, and YouthLite has ensured it's easy to access. Your students will thank you, and you'll see the difference in your classroom from day one. Transform your teaching and make every minute count with this fantastic resource. Get your copy today!

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