ERIC Number: ED316380
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
Being Superintendent of a Small-Town District.
Schmuck, Richard A.; Schmuck, Patricia A.
Because of their visibility at the center stage of community life, small-town superintendents have a greater opportunity to act as participatory managers and instructional leaders. This paper reports the results of surveys with 25 small-town school superintendents to discover rural/urban differences, work patterns, and exemplary practices in instructional leadership. The prototypical superintendent was a white male in his early 50's with coaching experience, working in the same geographical region where he grew up, with nearly 30 years' experience in professional education. Superintendents' management styles differed, with some using collaborative, one-on-one, or laissez-faire methods. When asked to reflect on accomplishments in their current position, superintendents most often mentioned erecting or remodeling facilities, fiscal saving, initiating curriculum development, and hiring and firing personnel. Almost all were preoccupied with bonds, budgets, and buildings. Unlike urban administrators, small-town superintendents were not preoccupied with interpersonal conflict. Rural administrators have to be generalists to a greater degree than their urban counterparts. Exemplary practices include the following: (1) meeting with staff to uncover district problems; (2) making desegregation work; (3) using the management team; and (4) leading for school improvement. (DHP)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Administrators; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A