Teacher-Principal Accord Pledged

By Blake Rodman — September 10, 1986 1 min read

The nation’s largest organizations for teachers and principals have collaborated on a report that calls on high-school administrators and instructors to improve schooling through “cooperative action.”

The report, ''Ventures in Good Schooling” -the first joint project of the National Education Association and the National Association of Secondary School Principals in more than a decade-offers 84 recommendations for teacher-principal cooperation in creating a productive learning environment.

“Our two national associations candidly acknowledge that teachers and principals will continue to view certain issues from markedly divergent perspectives,” the report says. “We do not, however, see any insurmountable barriers to a more mature, mutually beneficial accord.”

Mary Hatwood Futrell, president of the N.E.A., said at a press conference that the report offers “sound, practical advice,” adding that “this is one way to empower teachers.”

Report’s Recommendations

Among the recommendations developed by a joint N.E .A.-N.A.S.S.P. panel that was set up more than a year ago:

  • Principals should involve faculty members in decisionmaking.
  • Teachers should participate in the school budgeting process and in evaluating principals’ performance.
  • Teachers should be evaluated primarily, but not entirely, on their classroom instruction.
  • Principals should seek teachers’ advice on staffing needs and decisions.
  • Principals and teachers should jointly devise a school wide plan for instructional improvement and for recognizing student achievement.
  • While noting that “enlightened organizations” include staff members in decisionmaking, the report affirms that “final decisions remain the prerogative of management.”

    The drafting of the report is the first cooperative venture between the two organizations since the principals’ group split from the N.E.A. in 1972, after the N.E.A. membership voted to revoke the right of administrators to hold office in the association, said Scott D. Thomson, executive director of the N.A.S.S.P.

    “We are now trying to build bridges,” Mr. Thomson said, ''because we feel that wherever there are suspicions and antagonisms between teachers and principals, education is hurt.”

    A version of this article appeared in the September 10, 1986 edition of Education Week as Teacher-Principal Accord Pledged