ERIC Number: ED454605
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2001-Apr
Blind Man's Bluff: Instructional Leadership, Teacher Selection and Rational Decision-Making.
Mertz, Norma T.; McNeely, Sonja R.
Little research has been done to discover the process of selection of teachers by principals. This paper reports the results of a small study in which 29 principals in 11 districts in Tennessee were interviewed to determine the process used to hire a teacher, with the results analyzed for instructional leadership and rational decision making. If the results of this study are representative of most principals, the process leaves much to be desired. Most of the study's principals admitted to making the decision to hire a teacher in the first few minutes of an interview, evidently based on the candidate's resemblance to a mental picture of how a successful teacher should appear. Gut instinct was a phrase often mentioned. A major concern for the principals was whether the new hire would fit in with the current staff. Minimally, this might imply keeping things as they are, rather than perceiving a newly hired teacher as a chance to move in new directions. If a candidate has much to offer but does not project the appearance, personality, or mannerisms of other staff members or of a stereotypical teacher template, a chance for positive change may be lost. (Contains 38 references.) (RKJ)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Seattle, WA, April 10-14, 2001).