Making Sense As a School Leader: Persisting Questions, Creative Opportunities / Edition 1

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School principals are regularly confronted by conflicting priorities and perplexing dilemmas where the appropriate leadership action is not easy to choose. This book shares some of the "sense" that practicing principals have made of their own complex work, drawing from the experiences of the Harvard Principal's Center, an internationally acclaimed training program for aspiring and practicing principals. The authors offer real-life case examples of typical leadership dilemmas—in such areas as student discipline, teacher assessment, fiscal management, parental involvement, and schoolwide planning—and they discuss potential responses to issues that seem ambiguous, complex, and highly charged. Arguing that there are no textbook solutions to most school problems, the authors advocate an inquiry-oriented approach to leadership that will enable principals to cope with tough leadership choices by encouraging them to think through decisions in ways that promote fairness, collaboration, accountability, and academic excellence.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A real contribution to an over-discussed subject...This book reaches below the surface to the real issues and relationships that confront principals in their orchestration of the daily affairs of teachers, parents, and students." (Harold Howe II, former president of the Ford Foundation for Education and Public Policy)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780787901646
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 10/26/1995
  • Series: Jossey-Bass Education Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 1,495,638
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.63 (d)

Meet the Author

RICHARD ACKERMAN is assistant professor of education at the University of Massachusetts Lowell College of Education and lecturer on education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He is co-director (with Rebecca van der Bogert) of the International Network of Principals' Centers. He lives in Cambridge. GORDON A. DONALDSON is professor of education at the University of Maine and coordinator of the Maine Network of School Leaders. REBECCA VAN DER BOGERT is a former principal who now serves as superintAndent of schools in Winnetka, Illinois.

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Table of Contents


Leadership as a Quest.

Justice: Doing What's Right..But What Is Right?

Teaching: Promoting Effective Teaching and Valuing Each Teacher.

Purpose: Process or Product?

Resources: Balancing Infinite Needs and Finite Resources.

Change: Fostering Change and Respecting the Individual.

Ownership: Weaving Diverse Interests into Mutual Purpose.

Autonomy: Encouraging Creativity and Preserving Community.

Trusting in Community.

Trusting in Yourself.

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