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Troy Patterson

The Principal: The Most Misunderstood Person in All of Education - Kate Rousmaniere - T... - 1 views

  • In American public schools, the principal is the most complex and contradictory figure in the pantheon of educational leadership.
  • A few years ago when I walked the hallways of a high school with my five-year-old niece Evie, she remarked, without prompting: “There’s the principal’s office: you only go there if you are in trouble.”
  • Most remarkably, those very people who did not understand what a principal did were often the first to argue for the abolition of the role.
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  • The history of the principal offers even more contradictions. Contemporary principals work in the midst of unique modern challenges of ever-changing fiscal supports, school law and policy, community values, and youth culture.
  • The complex role of the principal is not an accidental by-product of history; rather, the principal’s position at the nexus of educational policy and practice was an intentional component of the role when it was originally conceived.
  • Like other middle managers, the principal had a “dual personality,” standing “on the middle ground between management and employee,” as both a loyal sergeant to a distant supervisor and a local administrator who had to negotiate with workers in order to get the job done properly.
  • Through the mid-20th century, the principalship was an inconsistently defined position, as often a teacher with administrative responsibilities as an administrator who supervised teachers.
  • As the principalship evolved away from the classroom to the administrative office, the principal became less connected with student learning, and yet more responsible for it.
  • Modern principals came to have less to do with student learning and more to do with upholding administrative structures and responding to public pressures.
  • For all those efforts, however, the history of the principalship is marked by an increasing discrepancy between the popular image and the actual work of the position. Ironic too, is the dominant image of the principalship with an office, given the great variety, mobility, human interactions, and community relations of principals’ work.
Monte Tatom

TICAL - Technology Information Center for Administrative Leadership - 0 views

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    This is a fantastic resource for Administrators, by Administrators!
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