Leading with Integrity: Reflections on Legal, Moral and Ethical Issues in School Administration

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Need for Ethics in School Districts Few U.S. school districts employ an ethics officer, and its unclear how many have formal ethics codes. . . . Its not that wrongdoing is on the upswing. But in this era of budget cutting and high-stakes accountability, when critics may raise suspicion about whats really happening with the money, a school district that leads with clarity about ethics can bolster community trust. As a bonus, it also can strengthen employee morale and motivation. Joan McRobbie senior research associate, WestEd, San Francisco, California author, Contagious Effects of a Districts Ethics Code School Administrator, AASA Inexperienced Leaders Dr. Oliver . . . traces the problem of unethical behavior among some school leaders, in part, to the lack of experience he sees in those being hired today by school boards to fill superintendencies. Educators who entered the field (a few decades ago) and rose through the ranks to become superintendents are retiring in waves. The vacancies they create are not drawing the quantity and quality of experienced administrators eager to assume the top berth (and) may not have the training, experience or strength to stand up to the pressures being forced on them. Dr. Oliver contends that those entering without much experience in key decision-making roles are more likely to fall into the trap of what appears to be an innocent proposal without considering the underlying ethical issues, more inclined to go with the first decision that comes to mind . . . [and] less likely to look at the consequences of unethical behavior. Priscilla Pardini, Shorewood, Wisconsin author, Ethics in the Superintendency School Administrator, AASA
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About the author

Clarence G. Oliver Jr., has enjoyed an education career that spans five decades, serving in both public school and higher education leadership assignments. He is an emeritus professor and former dean of education at Oral Roberts University, retired superintendent of schools at Broken Arrow (Oklahoma) Public Schools, an award-winning journalist, and a former United States army infantry officer with Korean War–combat experience.

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Published on
Dec 1, 2015
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Education / General
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