ERIC Number: ED458698
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2001-Nov
Towards a Leadership Practice Field: An Antidote to an Ailing Internship Experience.
Creighton, Theodore B.
This paper claims that preparation programs in educational administration do not prepare principals for the challenges they will face in their schools. Such programs do not address the real-life situations in which principals find themselves, and internships are typically insufficient in helping future leaders hone their skills. The essay states that prospective principals need a "leadership practice field" in which a bridge is created between performance and practice. Such practice fields allow the aspiring principal to gain experience without having to worry about failure. They allow school leaders to learn how to handle phone calls from irate parents before actually having to do so. It allow leaders to connect what they conceptually believe is the right course of action to what they choose to do under real circumstances. One such practice-field program that was required for 225 master's students preparing for the principalship is described. In the program, the students were given various scenarios, such as talking with a student reporting sexual advances by a classroom teacher, and were then offered feedback on how they handled the situation. Practice programs, it is claimed, focus on what principals will actually do in a given circumstance, rather than what they might do. (Contains 13 references.) (RJM)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the University Council for Educational Administration (15th, Cincinnati, OH, November 2-4, 2001).