Black Female Superintendents and Resiliency: Self-Perceptions of Gender- and Race-Related Constraints from a Resilient Reintegration Perspective Public Deposited

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  • March 20, 2019
  • Daye, Teresa
    • Affiliation: School of Education
  • It has only been within the last twenty years that female superintendents and superintendents of color have been included in the scholarship and research on the superintendency (Blount, 1998; Glass, 1992; Glass et al., 2000; Kowalski & Brunner, 2005; Tallerico, 1999). Jackson (1999) describes Black women superintendents as "doubly marginal in society, as females and African Americans" (p. 141). The number of Black female superintendents continues to be unsteady. There are recent reports of several Black female school superintendents either being dismissed or announcing their resignations. It appears any momentum gained in increasing the numbers of Black female superintendents may be reversed by the frequent resignations and dismissals of Black female superintendents across the country. Jackson recognizes that Black females are living examples of human adaptability, strength and accomplishment when granted opportunities to serve in the role of superintendent. In recent years, investigators and researchers from multiple disciplines such as child development, pediatrics, psychology, psychiatry, sociology, and education have engaged in studies of resiliency (Werner, 2000). Whereas most of the earlier resilience research has focused on children and adolescents, increasing numbers of studies on the resilience of adults who are exposed to personal and work-related stress are beginning to surface. This study used the common themes that emerged from the review of the literature as a framework to investigate how Black female superintendents perceive their experiences as superintendents from a resiliency perspective. The study presents the findings from interviews with five sitting Black female superintendents who expressed their perceptions of the impact of race and gender on their roles as Black female superintendents, and more poignantly, manners in which they dealt with any perceived race- or gender-related constraints. The study participants' contributions on perceived race and gender inequities serve to highlight the issues and identify methods of dealing that may lead to the elimination of social injustice in the superintendency and the educational arena as a whole. A positive outcome may manifest in the form of more respected, productive and extended tenures for Black female school district superintendents.
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  • In Copyright
  • Malloy, William W.
  • Doctor of Education
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Education
Graduation year
  • 2007

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