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Zhang, Y., Soucie, D., & Leong, W. F. (2000). Principal’s actual and ideal time allocation to critical school managerial tasks in Singapore. In J. Ee, Berinderjeet Kaur, N. H. Lee and B. H. Yeap (Eds.), New ‘Literacies’: Educational response to a knowledge-based society: Proceedings of the ERA-AME-AMIC Joint Conference 2000 (pp. 531-537). Singapore: Educational Research Association.
The purpose of this study was to examine the way principals spend their time and how they would like to spend their time in the accomplishment of certain critical school management functions. The study was part of a more comprehensive research project designed to gather empirical evidence concerning relevant aspects of effective principal leadership, and to examine how they relate to school success in Singapore. This particular paper only reports preliminary findings describing the tasks to which principals actually allocate more time and the amount of ideal time that they would like to devote to these tasks during typical week at school.
Randomly selected primary and secondary school principals (n=96) participated in the study, and completed the Time Allocation of Principals (TAP) survey initially developed by Gorton & McIntyre (1978) and more recently refined by Pellicer et al (1988). This instrument is designed to rank order the following nine tasks areas where principals plan and actually use time in their weekly schedule: Program development, personnel, school management, student activities, Ministry's activities, community activities, planning, professional development, and student behavior.
Preliminary findings indicate the following: whereas principals would prefer not spend so much time on school management activities (weekly calendar, office, budget, correspondence, memos, etc.), this is the task area where they actually spend most of their time; primary and secondary principals agree that program development (curriculum implementation & instructional leadership), personnel management, and planning are the three most critical task areas to which they should be devoting most of their time; primary principals report actually devoting more time than secondary principals to the MOE Office (meeting, committees, reports, etc.).
This paper was published in the Proceedings of the ERA-AME-AMIC Joint Conference held at Singapore from 4-6 September 2000
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