The principal internship experience: Leaders for 21st century middle schools



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The purpose of this grounded theory study is to investigate practicing middle school administrators’ experiences during their principal internships and their perspectives on how well the internship prepared them to be leaders of schools with high minority and/or high poverty student populations.
Principal preparation programs build a knowledge base for graduate students teaching them educational leadership history, pedagogy, and philosophy in a generalized sense. The internship is a component of the program. Combined, the programs for future principalships may or may not facilitate the development of principals ready to lead schools with high poverty and/or minority student populations. Recent studies place an emphasis on well-designed internships with collaboration between universities and school districts. Studies of educational administration preparation students have shown that students know the importance of mentoring and describe their needs for more experience. The study will deepen our understanding of the education of school administrators and help to strengthen the preparatory programs that train future school leaders. This research will also focus on perceived twenty-first century concerns from the participants and how well prepared they are to handle the issues.



Middle school, Principal internships, Principal preparation