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Academic Leadership Journal

Abstract

In today’s schools, building level administrators are faced with a variety of challenges as they strive to provide leadership that promotes successful learning experiences for all students. Promoting the success of all students is also the foundation of current federal legislation with the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) mandates as well as the Individual with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Answering the call of these directives and the goal for all students to experience success, building level principals must have fundamental knowledge of special education programs and services. However, research indicates that principal preparation course work may not target special education leadership and responsibilities (DiPaulo and Tschanned-Moran 2003). Further studies, such as work done by Lasky and Karge (2006), examined principal preparation programs and found the need for increased training in the area of special education during the preservice phase. Therefore, with little emphasis during the principal preparation experience in providing leadership at the building level in the area of special education, many beginning principals find themselves challenged on a daily basis. Learning on-the-job becomes the starting point for all fundamental knowledge regarding special education leadership.

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