837 Slices
Medium 9781475817263

Developing an Administrative Perspective: Toward a Curriculum Framework for Fostering Conceptual Change

JOURNAL OF SCHOOL LEADERSHIP Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

HOWARD L. JACOBS1

ABSTRACT: The prior experience of entering students of educational administration as classroom teachers is usually disregarded for purposes of program planning. Nevertheless, that experience can exert a prepotent effect during the early stages of academic induction devoted to developing an administrative perspective. Drawing on conceptual change theory, a curriculum framework can be designed to foster the beginning stage of that cognitive shift during introductory coursework.

The real art of discovery consists not in finding new lands, but in seeing with new eyes.

—Marcel Proust

All seeing is essentially perspective, and so is all knowing.

—Friedrich Nietzsche

It is a deceptively innocuous fact that virtually all students in university-based programs of administrative preparation are seasoned classroom teachers and, because of the collateral nature of such study, continue to be immersed in classroom life throughout the duration of their education as school administrators. Undoubtedly, there is something advantageous in having practiced teachers as students of educational administration since “they enter programs with an established schema about the general culture of the school and do not have to be socialized into its shared meanings” (Prestine and LeGrand, 1991, p. 75). On the other hand, in the problematic course of getting these students to see much the same phenomena from the administrator’s side of things, the more immediate experience of classroom life can be an antagonistic factor in apprehending that critical change of perspective.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781475817744

Competencies and Aspirations: Determining Internship Needs–An Eight-Year Study

JOURNAL OF SCHOOL LEADERSHIP Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

MAYNARD J. BRATLLEN1

ABSTRACT: This study analyzed administrative content areas prioritized according to competence and aspiration by midmanagement (principal) interns over an eight­year period of time as they completed administrative certification programs. As part of the internship program, separate prioritizations on entry-level competencies and future professional aspirations were correlated to determine needed areas of emphasis for students’ field experiences. The long-term study of these prioritizations provided an analysis that held important implications for those involved with the design and implementation of field-based training components for future campus level administrators.

As one surveys the relevant recent literature and especially the high visibility commission reports (Griffiths, Stout and Forsyth, 1988) concerned with school administrator preparation programs, the salient aspects of such writings usually call for the devotion of increased attention to a clinical experience. This set of experiences is perhaps better known in the developmental history of administrator preparation programs as an internship or practicum. There has long been common understanding and general agreement with respect to the validity and worth of a training program component whose goal is to give the prospective administrator real-life, on-the-job, practical training in the skills and duties of administration to complement university-based, expository, textbook oriented instruction. However, when the specific aspects and components of internship programs are examined with respect to setting, duration, methodology, procedures and content expectations, there seems to have been no common standard, and the experiences of students were as wide and varied as the multitude of institutions that offered them over the past several decades.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781475811780

Distributed Leadership Includes Staff: One Rural Custodian as a Case

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Gerri Maxwell

Jim Scheurich

Linda Skrla

Distributed Leadership Includes Staff: One Rural Custodian as a Case

ABSTRACT: Distribution of leadership tasks, often described as distributed leadership, has emerged as an innovative concept for describing the deployment of leadership within schools. A distributed leadership perspective suggests that successful school leadership is not simply the charge of the formal leaders (e.g., Gronn, 2000; Ogawa & Bossert, 1995; Scribner, Sawyer, Watson, & Myers, 2007; Smylie, Conley, & Marks, 2002; Spillane, Halverson, & Diamond, 2004); rather, the entire staff of a school, throughout its multilayered network of relationships and interactions, is responsible for school leadership (Crow, Hausman, & Scribner, 2002; Scribner et al., 2007; Spillane et al., 2001). An examination of the leadership literature yielded task orientation (Fleishman, 1953), communication orientation (Gronn, 2000; Spillane, 2006), and trust orientation (Hays Group, 2004; MacBeath, 2005; Oduro, 2004; Smylie, Mayrowetz, Murphy, & Louis, 2007) as key characteristics of leadership. As such, the lead author used this trifold lens as a means of recognizing leadership among support staff—in particular, a rural school custodian. In addition, this qualitative study (Lincoln & Guba, 1985), which utilized snowball sampling (Gall, Borg, & Gall, 1996), resulted in hour-long interviews of 19 informants whose conversations revealed the leadership impact of one school custodian over his 50-plus-year stint as a custodian and significant school leader. Recommendations for leadership programs include incorporation of further studies of support staff within the current scope of what is considered distributed leadership.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781475810233

Using Social Network Analysis to Promote Schoolwide Instructional Innovation: A Case Study

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Rebecca H. Woodland

Shannon Barry

Katrina Crotts Roohr

Using Social Network Analysis to Promote Schoolwide Instructional Innovation: A Case Study

ABSTRACT: Social network analysis (SNA), a methodological approach that enables the mathematical examination of interprofessional relationships, can be an important tool for understanding and leveraging the social relationships that support and restrain instructional innovation and the quality and pace of school reform initiatives. In this article, we explicate the conceptual underpinnings of SNA and summarize how it has been used in a range of preK–12 educational evaluation contexts. A school-based case study is presented in which school leaders examined formal and advice-seeking networks among teachers, staff, and administrators and used the findings to reduce teacher isolationism, promote efficient communication, and increase system capacity for instructional innovation. Challenges associated with SNA for educational evaluation and school improvement are also discussed.

See All Chapters
Medium 9781475817164

School Reform: Real Improvement Takes Time

JOURNAL OF SCHOOL LEADERSHIP Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

WILLIAM STRESHLY1,*

MAC BERND2

ABSTRACT: Politicians and educational leaders are under pressure to come up with quick fixes for our nation’s schools. However, significant changes in schools are complex processes which take years to accomplish. Moreover, the results of a faculty’s efforts may not be fully measurable for ten years or more. A case study of a California school district, which was given ten uninterrupted years to develop and implement an outcome-based instructional model, suggests that more time be given to schools to implement program improvement strategies. The study also reinforces the research linking positive labor relations to environmental conditions for successful school districts.

When Joseph and the Pharaoh developed ancient Egypt’s plan for control of farm commodities, their efforts were guided by a dream–a vision of what might be. For seven bountiful years, the economic planners focused on preparations for seven lean years. Those preparations paid off in time of famine because the Pharaoh wisely recognized that the project suggested by Joseph needed time. He perceived a natural time scale of ten to fourteen years before any rational conclusions could be drawn about the success of the project. He knew that no quick fix was possible; only a long-range solution would work.

See All Chapters

See All Slices