ERIC Number: ED407714
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1997-Mar
Supervision: Don't Discount the Value of the Modern.
Postmodernists have criticized modern conceptions of supervision as bureaucratic, hierarchical, and oppressive. This paper asserts that the postmodern proclivity to completely eschew expert supervision, evaluation, and judicious use of directive supervision is misguided, potentially limiting, and dangerous. The paper argues that collegial practices may not always be desirable and that directive supervision not only has its place in a supervisory program, but serves to safeguard the democratic framework of schooling and provides practical guidelines for practitioners and suggestions for the training of future administrators. The first part of the paper presents an overview of the three eras in the evolution of supervision--the premodern, the modern, and the postmodern. The three approaches to supervision outlined by May (1989) are described next--the applied-science approach, the interpretive-practical approach, and the critical-emancipatory approach. The paper argues that a diversity of approaches to supervision should be accepted, both the modern and postmodern. Supervision should be conceived as that process that utilizes a wide array of strategies, methodologies, and approaches aimed at improving instruction and promoting educational leadership as well as change. The paper presents the concept of "supervision as tofu"-- a practice that is diverse and versatile, yet uniform and substantial. It is unseen yet retains integrity. (Contains 100 references.) (LMI)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Chicago, IL, March 24-28, 1997).