ERIC Number: ED477115
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2003-Feb
Principals and Special Education: The Critical Role of School Leaders.
DiPaola, Michael F.; Walther-Thomas, Chriss
This document examines key leadership issues related to effective special education and reviews emerging standards in knowledge and skills for effective principal performance. An introduction notes school responsibility to provide students with disabilities with access to the general curriculum and ongoing monitoring of progress. The paper then examines the evolution of the principal's role and his/her influence on building-level special education services. Discussion of the principal's professional development needs is followed by a section identifying leadership challenges including growing principal shortages and its impact on special education. Next, using the Standards for School Leaders framework developed by the Council of Chief State School Officers, it examines current recommendations for development of principals and possible implications for effective special education administration. These standards address a shared vision of learning, school culture and instruction, organizational management, collaboration with families and community, and ethics. The paper notes an unintended outcome of these standards has been longer personnel preparation programs, as few states have reduced existing licensure requirements. It urges research into alternative school leadership models. (Contains approximately 120 references.) (DB)
Descriptors: Administrator Education, Administrator Qualifications, Administrator Role, Disabilities, Elementary Secondary Education, Leadership, Principals, Professional Development, School Administration, Special Education, Standards
Center on Personnel Studies in Special Education (COPSSE), P.O. Box 117050, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611. Tel: 352-392-0701; Fax: 352-392-2655; Web site: http://www.copsse.org. For full text: http://www.coe.ufl.edu/copsse/pubfiles/IB-7.pdf.
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Special Education Programs (ED/OSERS), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: National Clearinghouse for Professions in Special Education, Arlington, VA.; Florida Univ., Gainesville. Center on Personnel Studies in Special Education.