According to Beyoncé, “Girls run the world.” If this is actually the case, then who’s hiding all the women in educational administration? This is my third class in the ELPS Program. Ninety percent or more of the peers in my classes have been women. I was impressed with my fellow females as I considered the number of same-sex-sisters I had working toward similar goals. It wasn’t until I began reading the research that I realized, just because we are in the programs doesn’t necessarily mean we are getting the jobs.
The Washington Post affirms that 75% of public school teachers are female, yet only 30% of administrators are (McGregor and Tobey, 2014). E-School News reported, “Seventy-two percent of the education workforce consists of women, yet the number of women in leadership positions falls far short of that statistic. They fare best in the role of elementary school principals, with 54 percent of these jobs being held by women. But at the secondary school level, only 26 percent of principals are women, and in the head job of superintendent, 24 percent are women” (Domenech, 2012). I read several articles all leading me to the same conclusion: Women are underrepresented in school leadership. After scouring over the research, I kept thinking-“Where do we go from here?” I came up with few ideas.
Witnessing women with confidence and passion pushing towards positions of leadership brings a smile to my face. As women, we need to recognize our ambitions and rather than diminish one another, build each other up. Why is it that women are often each other’s own worst enemies? Ladies, we need to drop our egos and work together, supporting growth. Because, let’s face it, bad attitudes and belittling is not helping our situation. Hard work pays off. Believe in the power of perseverance. We are multi-tasking beasts- raising families, propelling our careers and still setting aside enough time to get that workout in. We need to celebrate our strengths; keep positive, and most of all continue to push the envelope. Like with any systematic change, a shift won’t happen overnight. But, if each of us makes a conscious effort to empower those we come in contact with rather than discourage, isn’t that really what leadership is all about?
Domenech, D. (2012, November 2). Why are women so underrepresented in educational leadership? E-School News.
McGregor, J. & Tobey, P. (2014, January 9). Glass-ceiling update: A snapshot of women in leadership positions. The Washington Post