Five African American Male Superintendents and Their Leadership in Diverse School Districts in Texas



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The focus of this research is in the area of African American male superintendents and their leadership in diverse settings. The research approach adopted in this dissertation used semi-structured interviews with five African American male superintendents that consisted of three main issues: (1) personal; (2) leadership quality/effectiveness and (3) impact on student academic performance. The findings from this research provide evidence that: superintendents believed they gained their focus on education by having strong parental influences; each superintendent believed that their involvement in sports helped them to sharpen their leadership skills at an early age; they believed in having systems in place to monitor and track the performance of their district; being visible in the community has helped to garner support from all stakeholders; and being educated during the civil rights era taught the superintendents a lot about equity issues. The main conclusions drawn from this research were that superintendent efficacy, professional development and a goal toward academic success for all students were the components demonstrated by these district leaders. This research recommends that superintendents have professional development to strengthen strong people skills, create mentorships and shadow-mentoring programs for both African American male superintendent candidates and practicing African American male superintendents new to the job or new to their district, emphasize diversity in leadership, investigate superintendency preparation programs at the university level to address racial issues, and research studies should be more specific on the office of the superintendency.