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ERIC Number: ED525583
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 195
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1244-9514-9
Forging Strong Working Relationships between Superintendents and School Board Trustees from a Male and a Female Perspective
Crump, Erika Bouknight
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Texas A&M University - Commerce
Having a united board behind a superintendent can facilitate noteworthy change within a district. In contrast, having a split board of trustees that habitually votes a divided count on every significant issue can stall progress and programs, ultimately bringing down student achievement and success. The purpose of this research was to examine how school superintendents build thriving relationships with their boards and to compare and contrast the varying techniques between male and female superintendents. The knowledge gained by this qualitative study in the grounded theory method is intended to provide information to superintendents to build cohesion and unity of purpose between a superintendent and the school board to initiate change for student success. The processes of interviewing, listening, observing, and interpreting the qualitative data through narrative study allowed the researcher to step into others' shoes to gain a fuller understanding of viewpoints to answer the research questions. Results revealed six common strategies for techniques to build a strong working relationship with board members. From those common strategies, 26 sub-categories emerged. Participants identified 10 steps necessary for a successful entry plan and delineated 24 best practices for new superintendents. An interesting finding was personality had more to do with leadership style rather than gender. Interpretations and implications tied most actions to managing events proactively in a measured, planned manner rather than as a hurried reaction to circumstances. Tying decisions to what is best for all children can increase leadership capacity and team building immensely. Finally, bolstering areas of weakness while becoming a lifelong learner can give all superintendents a competitive edge. Emerging patterns and themes allowed the conclusions from the research to be revealed through the actual words and experiences of the participants. It is possible for superintendents to share power and successfully engage board members in the process of leading the school district as a unified team. At the core of this process is the fact superintendents should build cohesion around a common vision. Without strong relationships and trust, the team of eight can quickly disintegrate into factions. Strong relationships can assist a team to weather hard decisions. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A