• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

“An extensive and comprehensive resource for aspiring as well as practicing school leaders at every level. For aspiring school leaders, this book provides a multifaceted look at the complexity of school organizations. For practicing school leaders, the design of the content, the broad array of useful information, the action checklists, the quick-read guidelines, and the extensive references provide readers with a useful guide.”

—Gerald N. Tirozzi, Executive Director

National Association of Secondary School Principals

An original, proven approach to help you meet challenges head-on!

Research has shown that effective school leadership is a key factor in promoting high student achievement. This very practical, easy-to-use reference draws from leadership lessons learned in both education and business. Written as a field manual for “school CEOs” to facilitate understanding and operating a school as an organization, this book is designed for easy access within a unifying framework to enable flexible use for busy principals.

Based on the Organizational Effectiveness Model, the manual offers a blend of background knowledge and practices that are immediately useful, in the context of five elements that are essential to all organizations:

Mission, including the central importance of useful metrics; Strategies, such as the value of seeing the whole system; Structure, including skill with conflict management; People, highlighting the usefulness of political savvy; Leadership, including the fundamental importance of trust

Filled with practical strategies and tools, The Principal's Field Manual is an invaluable resource for helping both new and experienced administrators better understand and effectively operate the school as a vital and dynamic organization.


In terms of the central role of leadership in providing coherence:

  • Do we strive to attract and retain the best people we can find?
  • Do we have frequent conversations about our values in the context of making decisions?
  • In our school, do we emphasize the need to preserve the valuable aspects of our culture while being open to adapt to a changing environment?
  • Has our school been successful in dealing with a significant amount of change in recent times?
  • Do our people take action with the full knowledge that our ultimate accountability is to serve our stakeholders in a manner consistent with our values?
  • In our school, do we balance the competing or even conflicting priorities of various stakeholders?
  • Do we understand that the public sees us as one school and therefore ...
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