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Why Do They Stay: A Mixed Methods Study of Female Superintendents' Job Satisfaction in Five Midwestern State

Alisha Bollinger, University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Abstract

Education is a female-dominated field. According to the 2011-2012 Schools and Staffing Survey, more than 75% of all teachers were women. Additionally, slightly more than half of all public school principals were women. However, the role of the superintendent continues to be disproportionately held by men. Nationally, only 25% of all PK-12 public school superintendents were women. Research has focused on the challenges and barriers that women face in the superintendency. The purpose of this study was to examine the experiences of female superintendents as they relate to job satisfaction and retention. ^ A mixed methods approach was used with an initial quantitative survey sent to all PK-12 public school superintendents in South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, and Iowa. Overall, superintendents reported high levels of job satisfaction. Based on the survey results, 20 women superintendents, who reported high levels of job satisfaction, were selected to participate in semi-structured interviews.^ Six themes emerged from the interview data: satisfaction, dissatisfaction, challenges, managing challenges, reasons they stay, and being a female superintendent. Each of these themes contributed to their experiences as a superintendent as well as their overall job satisfaction and decision to remain in the field. ^

Subject Area

Educational leadership|Women's studies|Educational administration

Recommended Citation

Bollinger, Alisha, "Why Do They Stay: A Mixed Methods Study of Female Superintendents' Job Satisfaction in Five Midwestern State" (2016). ETD collection for University of Nebraska - Lincoln. AAI10247048.
http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/dissertations/AAI10247048

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