ERIC Number: ED363960
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993-Nov
Changes in School Governance and Principals' Roles: Changing Jurisdiction, New Power Dynamics and Conflict in Restructured Schools.
Peterson, Kent D.; Warren, Valli D.
This paper examines the transformed governance structures of four schools engaged in systemic restructuring efforts and looks at how those transformations have affected principals' roles by reshaping the micropolitical environment of the school. Principals' roles have changed as: (1) decision-making jurisdictions are redrawn; (2) power dynamics are reshaped; and (3) conflict has increased. Although the study involved 6 schools--2 elementary, 2 middle, and 2 secondary--this paper presents information on the elementary and middle schools. Data were gathered through observation, surveys of teachers and students, interviews with teachers and administrators, and document analysis. Although the schools' governance systems differed, all had more decentralized decision making and teacher discretion than is typically found in schools. Findings indicate that in their new roles, principals address uncertainty, spend more time in formal and informal meetings to cope with the complexity of expanded micropolitics and influence decision making, and mediate conflict. Although changes in school governance have often increased teachers' sense of empowerment, it has substantially changed the principal's role, transforming it into a complex role centered within the micropolitical environment of the school. (LMI)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Center on Organization and Restructuring of Schools, Madison, WI.