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Besieged: School Boards and the Future of Education Politics


reviewed by Eliot Larson — 2006

coverTitle: Besieged: School Boards and the Future of Education Politics
Author(s): William G. Howell, Editor
Publisher: Brookings Institution, Washington D.C.
ISBN: 0815736835, Pages: 356, Year: 2005
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As a doctoral student twenty-five years ago, I wrote my dissertation about the recorded verbal interactions among participants at school board meetings from a management perspective. During the course of that investigation, I reviewed the “current” research about school boards. I found information about the history of school boards, descriptive studies about the socio-economic status of school board members, and many studies that prescribed the appropriate role for school boards in governing the local school district. I found no research at that time that specifically examined what school boards actually do as the agency empowered by the state to run our local school systems. One of the reasons I enjoyed reading Besieged is precisely because it examines this. Indeed, “Besieged” is an apt title for this collection of essays based on research about school boards done by leading scholars. We are led through an examination of the various expectations and pressures... (preview truncated at 150 words.)


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 108 Number 5, 2006, p. 803-805
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 12165, Date Accessed: 10/19/2017 5:12:03 AM

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About the Author
  • Eliot Larson
    West Chester Area School District, Pennsylvania
    E-mail Author
    ELIOT LARSON received a B.A. in history from Hobart College and M.A., M.Ed., and an Ed.D. from Teachers College, Columbia. He has over 20 years experience as a middle and high school principal in New York and Pennsylvania and has served for the last thirteen years as a middle school principal in the West Chester Area School District outside of Philadelphia. Recent publications include: “More Than a Business Plan”, Principal Leadership, April 2005; “The Suburban Paradox”, The School Administrator, December 2003; “School Improvement: What’s In It for Schools?” by Alma Harris, TC Review of Books, May 2003; “School Improvement: Notes from the Parking Lot”, Principal Leadership, May 2002; and “Anatomy of Change: Snapshot from a Building Perspective”, The Pennsylvania Administrator, February 2002.
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