A major recommendation, or mandate in some cases, handed down to principal preparation programs from accrediting agencies, state certification departments, or other bodies, is to prominently include school districts in the program. This might include Advisory Councils that include public school administrators, involving districts in the selection of mentors for fieldwork experiences, or other such efforts. The authors’ university has also included public school administrators in another, unique, way. After replacing the traditional, program-ending comprehensive exam with an oral portfolio defense, public school administrators were invited to participate on the defense panel. A focus group of administrators who participated as panel members was facilitated to determine their opinions on a number of questions related to program quality, the defense format itself, and the overall quality of candidates. The focus group provided meaningful information resulting in recommendations for making the program and the oral defense process even stronger. ACCESS FULL MANUSCRIPT HERE: http://cnx.org/content/m18756/latest/
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