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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Rural Female Superintendents and Their School Boards: A Multi-Case Study of Perspectives
by Place, Diane M., Ed.D., Wilkes University, 2014, 192; 3630177
Abstract (Summary)

It is well-documented in the literature that female superintendents are underrepresented in the field of public school leadership (Derrington & Sherratt, 2008; Hoff & Mitchell, 2008; Mountford & Brunner, 2010). Even as more women have assumed the leadership position of superintendent, they may be viewed as atypical leaders (Coleman, 2003). The leadership styles of females differ from those exhibited by their male counterparts and their work is impacted by sex-role stereotyping and gender bias (Grogan & Shakeshaft, 2011; Harris, 2007; Hoff & Mitchell, 2008; Kowalski & Stouder, 1999; Pirouznia, 2010). The effectiveness of the superintendent is based on the ability of the leader to shape and negotiate authority and power with the individual members of the school board and the governing school board at large (Bell, 1988). Minimal research has been conducted regarding the relationship of the female superintendent, specifically, with her governing school board. This qualitative multi-case study explored how three female superintendents perceived and described their relationships with their respective boards of directors. The theoretical framework of the study was developed on the principles of feminist research through the structural theories of social role and role congruity (Lather, 1991; Eagly, 1987; Eagly & Karau, 2002). The findings of the study suggest that female superintendents encounter complex challenges as they work to foster and develop a common vision and productive working environment with governing school boards with the goal of promoting the best educational programs for students.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Kropiewnicki, Mary
Commitee: Burnside, Dana, McHenry, Erin
School: Wilkes University
Department: Educational Leadership
School Location: United States -- Pennsylvania
Source: DAI-A 75/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Womens studies, School administration, Education
Keywords: Female, Rural, School boards, Superintendents
Publication Number: 3630177
ISBN: 978-1-321-07932-6
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