ERIC Number: ED320253
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
The Ethical Reasoning of School Administrators: The Principled Principal.
Kirby, Peggy C.; And Others
Typical ethical dilemmas confronted by educational administrators and their normative levels of ethical reasoning are identified in this two-phase study. The first phase, which involves in-depth interviews with 23 principals, applies the Van Hoose and Paradise (1979) developmental model of ethical reasoning to self-reports of decision making processes in ethically problematic situations. The second phase, based on interviews with 20 practicing administrators, compares the principals' reported levels of ethical reasoning with their perceptions of their peers' levels of ethical reasoning. Findings indicate that each group functions at the societal level of ethical reasoning, and that administrators perceive themselves as operating at a higher ethical level than their peers. A second finding suggests that ethical behavior is influenced by the ethical behavior of superordinates. A third conclusion is that reported behavior is not indicative of high levels of ethical reasoning. Finally, the level of moral growth may be inversely related to the length of time spent in the institution. Although the results have limited generalizability, a recommendation is made for participation in district-sponsored in-service workshops which address ethical issues in educational administration. (9 references) (LMI)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Administrators; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Boston, MA, April 16-20, 1990).