ERIC Number: ED325914
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
The Principal's Role in Shaping School Culture.
Deal, Terrence E.; Peterson, Kent D.
Designed to explain how principals can shape school culture, this book first discusses current pressures for school reform and the different perspectives on school operations reflected in these reforms. Competing reform strategies are described, specifically, the human resources approach and the structural, political, free market, and school culture models. Aiming to link reform success to school culture and symbolic leadership concepts, the book describes organizational cultures or subcultures within the greater society and presents evidence connecting organizational culture to productivity in business and schools. Next, a description is given of how the principal shapes a school culture by fulfilling five roles: those of symbol, potter, poet, actor, and healer. Following this, the book presents five case studies of school leadership in school settings that varied according to principal incumbency, school characteristics, student abilities, and organizational history. Finally, commonalities in the leaders' tactics are summarized and discussed. Each of the principals described identified what was important, selected compatible teachers, dealt successfully with conflict, set a consistent example, told illustrative stories, and used ceremonies, tradition, rituals, and symbols to display the school's common values. The book concludes with some action guidelines, with the caveat that these will prove inadequate unless accompanied by an unquenchable desire and commitment to build cultures that support and create excellence. Included are 51 references and a classified, annotated bibliography of 25 books and articles. (MLH)
Descriptors: Administrator Effectiveness, Case Studies, Educational Change, Elementary Secondary Education, Leadership Qualities, Organizational Theories, Principals, School Culture, Symbolism
Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402-9325 (Stock No. 065-000-00426-7).
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Administrators; Researchers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC. Programs for the Improvement of Practice.
Note: For a related document, see ED 322 618.