Journal of Educational Leadership in Action


In our current situation, of COVID 19, many school administrators feel helpless and powerless. Bringing students back into the classroom puts leaders in a position where they cannot guarantee everyone’s safety. Leaders are under pressure to keep faculty, staff, and students safe and that responsibility can be overwhelming (National Association of Secondary School Principals, 2020a). Administrators have an obligation to provide an education to students. It is what educators, do, after all. However, school leaders also have an obligation as an employer to make sure our staff is supported and safe. It is hard to believe that leaders can do more than react to and manage this crisis. But leaders can choose to respond, not react. This article suggests actions to reduce our own anxiety, support others, and create a healthy environment. These choices are ones that will change our environment for the better.


Dr. Jane Beese is an Associate Professor at Youngstown State University in the Department of Teacher Education and Leadership Studies. She teaches a range of courses in the masters and doctoral degree programs. The scope of her professional knowledge base and teaching expertise is broad, spanning several areas, including learning theory and instruction, current policy issues, organizational change, leadership theory and practice, and introductory research and qualitative methods. Her research agenda focuses on feminist and social justice issues. She has co-authored Teaching for Educational Equity: Case Studies for Professional Development and Principal Preparation Volumes 1 & 2 and Chapter 2 in Feminist Pedagogy, Practice, and Activism: Improving Lives for Girls and Woman.

Dr. Melissa Mlakar is the Director of Curriculum at Riverside Local School District in Cleveland, Ohio. She also teaches in the Educational Administration and Principal Licensure programs at Youngstown State University. She has presented and served as a panelist on many topics including teacher leadership.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.