Introduction and Discussion
Effective communication in schools is paramount. A fact about students who are able to communicate effectively in school is that they stand out in class. In addition, this skill is a cornerstone in education as it facilitates communication of ideas and thoughts. Communication in schools takes place in a variety of settings between students and teachers, teachers and administration, administration and students, and communication amongst students. A school that is rich in learning environment is one that takes effective communication as a vital part of the learning process. Every student is expected to communicate his or her ideas effectively having in mind that this is a crucial part of the learning process. Likewise, the administration is required to communicate effectively with relevant stakeholders so as to build trust (Gunther, James and Kate, 13). This ensures that all the relevant people are able to air out their opinions and ideas regarding the decisions of the school. It is also notable that effective communication is a platform where students prepare themselves for future career and the real world.
Communication can be defined as the process of transmitting information from one party to another using a common language or medium. In every communication, there are two important elements; the sender and the receiver. For this setting, the sender initiates communication while the receiver is the one that gets the message being communicated. The sender encodes the information through various ways including symbols and gestures. The message is the content or the outcome of communication and medium is the means for the same. Feedback is also an important element in communication that enhances the effectiveness of the message. With this view, effective communication can be described as the means of exchanging information in an appropriate way. In the school context, effective communication occurs in various ways and differing channels. For example, communication between students and teachers, faculty and students, teachers and teachers are some of the main types of communication expected in an education set up. All these communications are as important as the other to enhance and to keep the school going.
There are various elements of enhancing effective communication in school. These elements are useful in determining the quality of a communication process for various parties. This implies that the selection of various medium for communication is of vital importance. A school may choose to use either oral or written form depending on the quality and the expected outcomes of the message. For instance, the school administration uses written form of communication to communicate important messages that require documentation and signature from various stakeholders. Written memos, letters, handbooks, bulletin boards and newsletters can be used for effective communication. On the other hand, verbal communication involves; face to face communication, computer, telephones, tape messages, closed circuit television, and emails amongst many others. Nonverbal messages that are equally important may include body positions, facial expressions, gestures, clothing etc.
A key element in school communication is one that occurs between the school administrator and the various stakeholders including students, parents, teachers, and community members. This communication ensures that all stakeholders are aware of the accomplishments that the school wishes to achieve within the stipulated time. Effective communication here ensures that all the stakeholders’ works towards building a shared responsibility, mission, vision, goals, and other things that the school wishes to achieve in the long term. Likewise, effective communication is the only sure way of building a strong relationship between the administrators of the school and other stakeholders. For instance, research denotes that most principals spend about 70 to 80 percent of their time communicating with various stakeholders whether at a personal level or formal meetings. Operative principals know the importance of communication and know how to communicate effectively. In addition, they understand the significance of both formal, as well as, informal communication at all planes for the development of the school. This is done through various channels and with different stakeholders. For example; faculty and departments meetings, conversation with teachers and students, and telephone calls or emails are some of the common communications that facilitate the development of the school.
Effective communication is capable of inventing new talent, change in attitude, and creative thinking. As such, it should be encouraged in all forms to ensure that the progress of the school is kept at bay. Away from administration, communication amongst students gets work done. It is in this set up that students learn that their ideas, efforts and opinions are of great value not only to the school, but the society in general. Students who are capable of communicating effectively are distinguished in class, and their abilities and talents are easily realized. Communication between students also makes the learning experience more appealing than when there is no known means of communication. Likewise, the administration should allow for communication between them and the students. This means that the administration should allow students to tell their opinions regarding the development of the school. Typically, students are the major and most important stakeholders that keep the school going. Without them, the school would no longer be functional as it relies on them. This means that their opinions should also be given priorities provided are for the good of the school. It is possible that students may have ideas on some issues that face the school while the administration may be still at the dark. The wellbeing of the students can only be catered for when the administration allows students to air out their views.
Therefore, the views of students should never be discarded without discussing some aspects that are essential for the welfare of students and the entire fraternity.
Summary of the sources
Source 1: Leading by interaction in educational organizations
This journal recognizes the importance of communication in the progress of any organizational leadership including an educational set up. Leaders should learn that communication is the only key for prosperity or the success of a school, without which the institution is bound to fall. With this view, leaders and school administrators should be equipped with the required knowledge on effective communication for the progress of schools. The amount of time that leaders spend in communication highlights the importance of this skill in management. An effective leader is one who is able to use the various tools for communication in harnessing the resources of an organization or school for its growth. Communication not only ensures that a strong relationship between the school and the community is enhanced, but also ensures that an organization can achieve its goals in different aspects. When communication is effective, the involved people or stakeholders are able to work towards a shared goal in a harmonious environment where collaboration is given much significance. Essentially, this helps in improving the performance of a school or organization. Similarly, effective communication can only be achieved by removing barriers of communication through applied efforts by those in leadership. An effective communication must be able to make use of a full range of communication skills and other resources that establishes delivery of messages that guide, inspire and motive others into action.
Effective communication involves two parties. This means that both the receiver of the message understands what is entailed in the message and sends back his feedback at the same time. A one way communication where feedback lacks is not termed as an effective leadership. Likewise, message misinterpretations, misunderstanding and rejection are the complete opposite of effective communication.
However, communication is faced up with multiple barriers that make it less effective. Psychological factor is one of the leading barriers to communication. This is because psychological factors affect the way in which people perceive things. Therefore, as much as one would want to communicate, certain factors tend to hinder communication. Stereotyping is also another great barrier to effective communication. Sometimes people may have judgments on something and may not be willing to change their views. Likewise, lack of feedback is another major barrier to communication. Without it, it would not be clear on whether the messages were communicated effectively. Feedback, whether positive or negative, is an essential element in communication. Similarly, interpersonal factors are likely to hinder effective communication. For instance, people who keep repeating themselves may affect the quality of communication.
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