Preservice training and experience and English headteachers' preparation for the headship

Marianne Hvizdak, University of Texas at El Paso

Abstract

In this study the effects of preservice work experience and training on English headteachers' preparation for the headship were examined. Contemporary political, socioeconomic, and educational trends in the United Kingdom made it desirable to review traditional methods of preparing school leaders in light of the head's changing role. ^ A cross-sectional survey design utilizing a 10% stratified random sample of headteachers in England's state-maintained schools was employed in the study. Heads responded to a self-administered questionnaire designed to determine their degree and mode of preparation for 28 leadership roles. Headteachers first identified their level of preparation and then indicated whether competence could be attributed to preservice training, experience, or some combination of both. ^ Frequencies were calculated to determine the leadership roles for which headteachers reported being prepared and unprepared. To ascertain the mode of preparation, a mean score test was conducted for the 18 leadership roles for which heads reported being prepared. To establish whether gender differences existed for the degree of preparation, differences in cumulative percentages between males and females were analyzed for the following combined categories: (a) not at all prepared and inadequately prepared and (b) adequately prepared and extremely prepared. To establish whether gender differences existed for mode of preparation, differences in cumulative percentages between males and females were analyzed for responses in the combined categories (a) experience only; (b) mostly experience, equally training and experience, and mostly training; and (c) training only. ^ Results of this study indicated the headteachers were prepared for only 64% of the leadership roles currently associated with the headship. Heads attributed their preparation to preservice experience and experience and training combined. Significant differences were found between male and female heads in terms of degree but not mode of preparation. ^ Activities for which headteachers reported being prepared were linked to moral and pedagogical leadership roles, while those activities for which heads reported being unprepared were more recently acquired responsibilities. Therefore, retaining the apprenticeship model of preparation for traditional roles and adding a program of training balanced between theory and practice for newer roles is recommended. ^

Subject Area

Education, Administration|Education, Teacher Training

Recommended Citation

Hvizdak, Marianne, "Preservice training and experience and English headteachers' preparation for the headship" (2001). ETD Collection for University of Texas, El Paso. AAI3035099.
http://digitalcommons.utep.edu/dissertations/AAI3035099

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