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ERIC Number: ED569116
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Apr
Pages: 16
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
The Power of Principal Supervisors: How Two Districts Are Remaking an Old Role. Stories from the Field
Saltzman, Amy
Wallace Foundation
Principals have a difficult job. It requires them to be instructional leaders, managers and mentors, all with the goal of helping every student succeed. How can school districts provide principals the support they need to excel in this challenging position? This Stories from the Field report explores how some school districts are responding to that question by remaking the job of the principal's supervisor. It profiles efforts in two districts, Tulsa and Washington, D.C., that have rethought the supervisor's job, in part by giving supervisors fewer schools to oversee. The result is that supervisors now are fixtures in Tulsa and D.C. schools, doing things like classroom walkthroughs to observe what's working and what isn't--then sitting down with principals to discuss solutions. Changing the supervisor's job is no easy task. In addition to finding funding for the work--assigning each supervisor fewer schools means increasing the number of supervisors--district leaders face initial wariness from both principals and central office staff members. Supervisors, for their part, don't necessarily step into the job fully prepared to tackle it; so each district provides the supervisors with a considerable amount of professional development. Even with that, supervisors need to figure out how to reconcile two seemingly contradictory roles: developing a trusting relationship with principals while also being their judges in job performance evaluations. Both Tulsa and Washington, D.C., school districts receive Wallace support as part of the foundation's Principal Supervisor Initiative, which seeks to help participating districts and generate lessons for the broader field.
Wallace Foundation. 5 Penn Plaza 7th Floor, New York, NY 10001. Tel: 212-251-9700; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Wallace Foundation
Identifiers - Location: District of Columbia; Oklahoma (Tulsa)