ERIC Number: ED396448
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996-Apr
Transforming Teachers' Work: The Impact of Two Principals' Leadership Styles.
Davidson, Betty M.; Dell, Geralyn L.
A restructured school setting necessitates a major change in the principal's role. For example, the principal must not only espouse certain values, but practice them at the "in-use" level as well. This paper compares and contrasts the leadership styles of two principals who participated in the implementation of a restructuring effort, the Accelerated Schools Project. The study was set in a rural Louisiana school that served a high proportion of at-risk students. Data were gathered through informal interviews with and observations of 26 teachers and through indepth interviews with 6 teachers and the current principal. In 1991, the former principal and the teachers chose to implement the project with the support of the central-office administration. The second principal entered at the start of the project's second year. She recognized the importance of teacher inquiry for encouraging and developing innovation and trusted them to teach in creative ways. Teachers reported that the first principal did not apply the project's philosophy to the in-use level; teachers remained isolated and were not included in decision making; and some teachers continued to use traditional remedial work for at-risk children. According to teachers' accounts, the second principal showed that she was a team player, exhibited flexibility and took risks, treated the teachers as professionals, and trusted them to use creative strategies. In summary, restructuring the principal-teacher relationship is a key element in school restructuring. (Contains 12 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 York, NY, April 8-12, 1996).