Administrators' workload and worklife

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Tink, Garry C
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Education
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Faculty of Education, 2004
The primary purpose of this project was to investigate the extent to which schoolbased administrators in Foothills School division spend their time attending to matters of instructional leadership, organizational leadership, and human resource leadership. A secondary purpose was to ascertain whether the expectations for school-based administrators are consistent with the roles and responsibilities outlined in policy; if policy actually guides administrators' work lives; and the scope and quality of any discrepancies between expectations and reality. Administrative participants in this project completed an initial survey, and then engaged in writing a journal of daily activities for a period of two consecutive weeks. Data were analyzed qualitatively (thematically) and quantitatively. The study findings show that the job of a schoolbased administrator is unique to its context, multifaceted, and unpredictable. The results also show that policy is in place to provide structure and legitimacy, but does not appear to have much influence on the day-to-day events of administrators' worklives. School based administrators spent the greater part of their day focusing on instructional leadership but, for a majority of the participants in this study, over half of this time was spent in their own classrooms, teaching in isolation. Teaching loads for administrators are increased in smaller rural schools, making it even more difficult for them to spend the amount of time they felt they should spend on the other areas of instructional leadership. Organizational leadership time was focused on student supervision and discipline, building school-community connections, school plans, and internal communication with staff. Human resource leadership time was mainly focused on the school's professional development plan and the hiring and orientation of new staff members. Personal professional development was reported as being sparse, most often occurring in isolation from individual schools and staffs. The study shows a need for administrators to set time aside in their daily schedule for instructional leadership, and to have this instructional leadership evolve from system goals, filtering down into school goals, and into individual growth plans. An unanticipated outcome of this study was that, before they paid close attention to their use of time, most administrators were unaware of how much time they spent on certain activities, and most were unaware of just how much work they attempted and accomplished in a two-week period. The results of this study have implications particularly for all school jurisdictions in which administrators have teaching responsibilities.
ix, 71 leaves ; 29 cm. --
School administrators -- Alberta -- Workload , School personnel management -- Alberta , School administrators -- Alberta -- Time management , School management and organization -- Alberta