Dissertations and Theses @ UNI


Open Access Thesis


School superintendents and principals--Selection and appointment--Iowa;


The purpose of the study was to determine the selection practices used in the employment of public school superintendents in the State of Iowa. The study was centered on how closely and how extensively Iowa public school boards followed recommended selection procedures.

The method used was a survey instrument mailed to the president of the board of directors of the sixty-five Iowa public schools in which a vacancy for the superintendency occured during 1977. Forty-five replies were received for a response of 69.2 percent. Data was tabulated according to school enrollment and for all schools.

The prominent findings were (1) 80% of the vacancies were in the smaller schools, (2) less than half of the recommended procedures were used by a majority of the schools, (3) the majority of the larger schools used more procedures than the majority of the smaller schools, (4) the number of schools using each of twenty-four procedures, (5) the majority of the schools obtained assistance from outside the school district from organizations or consultants, the smaller schools much less than the larger schools, (6) there were five procedures with a percent of use difference greater than twenty percent between the larger and smaller schools, (7) larger schools received more applicants and selected more candidates for interviews than smaller schools, (8) 90.5% of the boards reached a unanimous vote for the candidate to whom the job was offered, (9) involvement of people other than board members in the selection process was very limited, (10) when other people were involved, a large majority were school-related persons and primarily from management, (11) over half of the involvement was the analysis of community and school needs iii and in interviewing candidates, and (12) those involved were used almost exclusively in an advisory capacity, the voting capacity being granted infrequently and never on final appointment decision.

The major conclusions were:

1. Iowa school boards do not follow recommended procedures in the selection of superintendents closely or extensively. 2. Iowa school boards involve other people in the selection process to a very limited extent. 3. Iowa school boards involve other people in the selection process in an advisory capacity almost exclusively and give the voting capacity infrequently and never in the final appointment decision. 4. Larger schools follow the recommended procedures in the selection process more closely and extensively than smaller schools. 5. Larger schools involve people other than board members in the selection process to a greater degree, but involved school-related people or management less than smaller schools.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Specialist in Education


Department of Educational Leadership and Postsecondary Education


Department of School Administration and Personnel Services

First Advisor

Donald L. Hanson


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Date Original


Object Description

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