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Introduction, Situation Analysis, Instructions, Technical Background

Case 23 The New Principal

Setting: Urban School; Your Position: Principal

After ten years of service as an elementary school teacher in a large metropolitan area, you were asked to take over the role of principal in another elementary school 15 miles away. Your predecessor in this role had "resigned" after allegations of child abuse and sexual assault. While you are flattered by the thought that you had administrative potential, you were somewhat dismayed by the reputation of this particular school. It is widely recognized for its low morale and antagonism between teachers and administration.

You have now been in the job for a month without notable success in gaining the acceptance of the teachers. They profess indifference to everything except what happens in their own classroom and resist doing anything except what is absolutely necessary.

Today you received a phone call from the senior contracts manager in the central district school office inquiring about the status of a particular project that had been funded by the government. Apparently your school had received a sizeable grant to fund the development of a new curriculum using computers to teach problem-solving skills in the primary grades. You were told that your predecessor was the major force behind the grant and that the project was to involve the talents of teachers in each of the primary grades. A progress report is two months overdue, and should that not be forthcoming soon, the remainder of the project monies, as well as the school system's reputation, are in jeopardy.

You promised that the matter would receive your immediate attention. You must determine the status of the project, the reasons for the delay, and the steps required to submit the report as soon as possible. It is a matter of some concern that none of the teachers has told you about this project.

Your answer: Facilitate

Decision SignificanceHow important is the "quality" of the decision, i.e. to what extent does the decision have material, strategic impact on your clients or beneficiaries inside or outside of the organization. (click for details)   Group ExpertiseDoes the group collectively have the necessary knowledge to solve the problem and or make this decision? (click for details)
Importance of CommitmentTo what degree will the implementation of the decision require the support and cooperation of the group to be effective? (click for details)   Interaction ConstraintAre there time or geographic constraints which would prevent you from bringing the team together (physically or by telecom) to make the decision? (click for details)
Leader ExpertiseTo what extent do you, the leader, have the necessary knowledge to solve the problem or make this decision? (click for details)   Team Competence How competent is the group at working together as a team in solving problems or making decisions. The issue is not their factual or analytical technical knowledge, but rather their ability to work together synergistically. (click for details)
Likelihood of Commitment How likely is it that the group would accept your decision as the best course of action even though not included in the decision making process itself. (click for details)   Time/Dvpt PreferenceChoose the importance of time and development individually or use the values specified by either the Time or Development Driven model.(click for details)
Goal AlignmentTo what degree are the members of the group committed to the achievement of the oganization goals which are at stake in this decision? (click for details)      Value of TimeThe value of time varies with the number and intensity of other activities confronting you and your group. Considering your current workload, rate the value of time. (click for details)
Likelihood of DisagreementHow controversial is this decision likely to be among the members of the group? (click for details)      Value of DevelopmentHow important is it to you to develop the capabilities of your group or team, i.e. increasing their knowledge, their commitment to the organization, and their effectiveness in working together? (click for details)
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