ERIC Number: ED376607
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Apr
Aspiring to the Superintendency in the Public School Systems: Women's Perspectives.
This paper presents findings of a study that investigated the reasons why more women are not in the superintendency when there are many women who are qualified and interested. Using a feminist poststructural approach, the first phase of the research consisted of a pilot case study of four women aspiring to the superintendency. The second phase involved interviews with 27 aspiring superintendents. A total of 68 announcement-of-vacancies brochures were also analyzed. Findings confirmed that the feminist-informed approaches to leadership are part of women's and other nontraditional leaders' styles, clarified the contexts within which a woman aspires to the superintendency, and demonstrated that gender is a major factor in preparation for the position. The women acted in a variety of ways to negotiate potentially inhibiting structures and strove to balance their professional and personal lives. Finally, they resisted discouragement in the face of difficulties. It is suggested that practices be reformed in the following ways: include women and people of color among educational administration faculty; give equal weight to feminist perspectives in administration courses; provide equally authentic superintendent internships; value nontraditional approaches to the superintendency; and develop female networking systems. Contains 47 references. (LMI)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (New Orleans, LA, April 4-8, 1994).