On Becoming a School Principal originated as a study of a new open space elementary school and how it engaged faculty and staff in designing programs and procedures.
Monthly planning sessions focused on the development of a school culture devoted to developing “good persons” within an atmosphere of cooperative teaching and collaboration. Considerable attention was focused on the principal and his history as a one room country schoolteacher at age seventeen.
In recent history, public education has become highly politicized, with reforms focusing on test results as a measure of progress. With each new administration, the nation has taken on a new mantra, but the reforms have not significantly improved achievement.
This book was written in the spirit of John Dewey and his advocacy for school-based research initiatives designed and implemented by practitioners. It is meant for educators and parents who want to help schools be the best that they can be.
The narrative examines how one man rose from humble beginnings to lead a new, innovative school. It is an ethnography of a school principal and a group of teachers in the act of doing good things for children.