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ERIC Number: ED535202
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 205
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1249-3819-6
The Profiles, Patterns, and Practices of Women Superintendents in Alabama's Public School Systems
Brouillette, Janine E.
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Alabama State University
The purpose of the study was to develop a profile that describes the patterns and practices of the 27 women who served as public school superintendents in Alabama during the 2006-2007 school year. This study explored the relationship between the profiles, patterns, and practices found in research and the manifestations in the lives and careers of these women. A mixed-method, explanatory design, which included both quantitative and qualitative methods of data collection and analysis was used in this study. Of the 27 Alabama women superintendents, 22 responded to the survey. Seven were interviewed to allow for elaboration of responses and identification of new issues not previously captured. The data revealed that the typical women superintendent was between the ages of 51-60, the first or second born child in their family, Caucasian, and married with two children. She had an earned doctorate, was an appointed superintendent, and employed in a rural county school system. She was typically hired from within her school system and served as a superintendent for three years. She spent an average of 13 years as a classroom teacher and another 13 years as an administrator before obtaining the superintendency. When she became superintendent, she was between the ages of 46-55, worked 60 hours per week, and earned $100,000-$149,999. The personal barriers that women superintendents reported were (a) conflict between career and family, (b) lack of ability to relocate, and (c) constantly having to prove oneself. The professional barriers they felt were (a) nature of superintendent work, (b) little room for error, and (c) lack of job security. Personal strategies that supported them in their position were (a) having a supporting family, (b) having well-polished communication skills, and (c) having obtained a doctorate. The professional strategies were having (a) management and leadership experiences, (b) knowledge of school finance, and (c) knowledge of curriculum and instruction. This research revealed that universities should actively recruit highly qualified women interested in the superintendency. Professional associations should also provide a strong level of commitment and support to women leadership issues. Finally, future studies should compare and contrast the profiles and obstacles of elected and appointed superintendents as well as minority superintendents in Alabama. [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
Identifiers - Location: Alabama