Leader and Role Development
Principles of Administration in the Church Educational System

“Principles of Administration in the Church Educational System,” Administering Appropriately: A Handbook for CES Leaders and Teachers (2003), 1–19

“Principles of Administration,” Administering Appropriately, 1–19

Principles of Administration in the Church Educational System

The commission of leaders and teachers in the Church Educational System is to live the gospel, teach effectively, and administer appropriately. Each aspect of this commission is essential to meeting the objective of religious education. While teaching is the primary function of individuals in CES, administering appropriately is a vital part of every assignment. Elder Gordon B. Hinckley,1 then a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, expressed the relationship between teaching and leading when he declared, “Effective teaching is the very essence of leadership in the Church” (as cited by Jeffrey R. Holland, in Conference Report, Apr. 1998, 31; or Ensign, May 1998, 26).

The purpose of this handbook is to emphasize gospel principles essential for fulfilling the commission to administer appropriately. Effective administration in CES is governed by correct principles. Elder Boyd K. Packer of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles explained, “There are principles of the gospel underlying every phase of Church administration” (“Principles,” Ensign, Mar. 1985, 8). Gospel principles are unchanging and can be applied in varied circumstances. By their very nature, true principles expand vision and establish expectations of ideal performance. The principles in this handbook serve as standards by which CES leaders and teachers assess personal development and professional growth.

All who administer in CES need to periodically assess and improve their capability, regardless of their levels of experience. The influence of the Holy Ghost is essential as we seek to emulate the Savior’s perfect example.

This handbook is divided into two sections—the first addresses basic principles of administration and the second emphasizes fundamental administrative skills. While not all principles and skills of administration are given consideration in this handbook, those presented are considered essential to fulfilling the commission to administer appropriately.

This section of the handbook will focus on the following six areas of administration:

  • Administer appropriately in the Church Educational System.

  • Assist individuals, families, and priesthood leaders.

  • Administer using true principles.

  • Understand CES assignments, programs, and materials.

  • Develop divine potential and promote professional growth.

  • Become a Christlike leader.


  1. “How to Be a Teacher When Your Role as a Leader Requires You to Teach,” General Authority Priesthood Board Meeting, 5 Feb. 1969.