The School Administrator in Popular Film
Novello, Michael A.
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This qualitative study is an examination of a body of films portraying school administrators (principals, heads of school, deans, superintendents, assistant principals or assistant superintendents) to ascertain: (1) the dominant images, (2) if the portrayals present favorable (positive or neutral) or unfavorable (negative) images of school administrators, (3) if the images change over time, and (4) if the administrators exhibit the competencies recommended by a professional organization of school administrators, the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP). The researcher also explains how he selected the films used in this study. He argues that film is an art form and that school administrators in film have not previously been studied as a distinct group. Using the techniques of qualitative analysis, including constant comparison, observational analysis, and interpretive commentary, the researcher records the depictions in each film and cham the presence or absence of the twelve NASSP competencies in each school administrator character. The researcher assembles an expert panel to view and rate characters in representative films using the NASSP competencies list.
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