Human Relations in School Administration

Human Relations in School Administration

Human Relations in School Administration

Human Relations in School Administration

Excerpt

For many years there has been a demand for a new content in the teaching of school administration. The vast amount of interest and research stimulated by the Cooperative Program in Educational Administration (CPEA) has demonstrated clearly that the new content is people. This book is concerned with the behavior of people in the social institution known as the public school. It is written from the frame of reference of the administrator, but it carries concepts of importance to teachers, students, parents, and that undefinable person, the lay citizen. If one is to know about behavior, one cannot stay within the confines of any single discipline and expect to gain real insights. This book draws upon psychology, with its many branches and subdivisions, sociology, perception, group dynamics, political science, anthropology, business and industrial administration, and educational administration. All of these have much to offer. Educational administration is not a pure science in itself, and so it must draw upon all areas of investigation. The relevant findings must be synthesized and focused upon the problems and issues of school administration in such a way that a theory will some day be constructed.

Many people in school administration may be discouraged with this book because it does not contain lists of human relations rules or techniques of behavior. This is not a cookbook; it is a textbook. As such, theory will be discussed and evaluated and brought to bear on the important problems in school administration. The basic purpose of this book is to bring together in one volume what is known about human relations and relate it to school administration.

The basic assumption of the text is that human behavior can be changed. Through the use of substantive knowledge, actual situations (cases), meaningful exercises, and the case method of discussion in the classroom, the administrator can gain new insights into the people with whom he works. He will have no need for a list of techniques; in fact, he will grow to be quite suspicious of this approach to human relations.

It is hoped that the student, as he proceeds through this text, will begin to develop a theory of how people behave in the social institution which is the American public school. It is hoped that he will begin to formulate answers to such questions as: Why do I, as a principal, feel the way I do toward the teachers in my building? Why is it that I accept decisions made by my superintendent when I know I have a better decision? Why are certain members of the board of education re-elected continually . . .

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