ERIC Number: ED285265
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1987
Reference Count: N/A
Characteristics of Excellent Principals.
Batsis, Thomas M.
Recent business and education publications have stressed the excellence concept and the pivotal role of the executive. While effective business leaders are thought to possess certain characteristics, no consensus exists concerning educational leaders' roles. Although instructional leadership has received most attention in education literature, some theorists dispute this emphasis, concluding that school management functions are best left to principals and instructional leadership to teachers. This paper describes a set of five characteristics shared by effective school administrators, including (1) a sense of vision, a comprehensive perspective transcending goals and mission; (2) clearly stated expectations for staff and students; (3) effective formal and informal communication skills; (4) a high degree of presence or visibility; and (5) technical knowledge of curricula and learning processes. The paper takes issue with Education Secretary William Bennett's recommendation that elementary school principals be drawn from a variety of backgrounds. Bennett's suggestion undermines the importance of teacher-learner interactions, a foundation built from years of classroom teaching experience. The most effective leaders enter situations without preconceived notions and adapt their leadership approaches accordingly. (MLH)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Catholic Educational Association (New Orleans, LA, April 20-23, 1987).