ERIC Number: ED383671
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995-Apr
Context and Perceptions: Implications for Leadership.
Berg, Judith H.
This paper explores the patterns of interaction which enhance or inhibit administrators acceptance of their superintendent's agenda. The data were drawn from a case study of a superintendent involved in a change process, through observation and interviews with the superintendent, district administrators, and principals. Implications of the superintendent's and 22 administrators' differing views are discussed in the context of three questions: (1) what is the administrator's role in relation to the superintendent? (2) How does the administrator interpret the superintendent's role in decision making? and (3) What events define past interaction with the superintendent? Data indicate that the more the superintendent communicates concerns, desires, and hopes, the more individuals perceive their input as meaningful and/or accept the superintendent as the final authority. District office staff, whose opinions were solicited, almost without exception, accepted the superintendent's power and were active in supporting his agenda. By contrast, principals felt confused about the superintendent's thinking, perceiving that he showed little substance and did not seriously consider their input. The superintendent, in turn, only surmised their discomfort with personnel actions and did not recognize that his level of interaction with the community further engendered distrust in administrators. The evidence indicates that superintendents seeking organizational cohesiveness may need to focus specifically on high levels of social interaction. (Contains 22 references.) (ND)
Descriptors: Administrator Effectiveness, Administrator Role, Case Studies, Communication Skills, Communication (Thought Transfer), Decision Making, Elementary Secondary Education, Interaction, Interpersonal Communication, Leadership, Principals, Rapport, School Administration, School Districts, Superintendents, Teacher Administrator Relationship
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 (San Francisco, CA, April 17-22, 1995).