Running head: SHARED DECISION-MAKING AND COMMUNICATION
North Central University
Assignment 10: Shared Decision-Making and Communication
The use of technology has significantly improved the communication options within our society. The use of electronic mail and social networking sites are widely used to communicate personal and business related information within organizations to help fulfill their personal goals, missions and visions. As school districts transition through one of the worst economic times in our nation’s history, the use of shared power from leadership to stakeholders’ increases power (Annenburg Media, 2010). Stakeholder involvement within an organization which promotes shared decision-making is a critical component; therefore, school community relations are concerned more with involving stakeholders in collaborative efforts and activities that are ultimately intended to bring about school improvement and increased student success (Van Meter, 2000). Hoy & Miskel (2008) asserts that the involvement of multiple stakeholders, such as parents, administrators, students, teachers, school board members, businesspeople, policy makers, news media, and taxpayers, provides a great gauge on the various viewpoints that should be considered in making a decision. Specifically, the Group-Agreement Decision-Making Style is defined as “the leader shares the problem with subordinates as a group and together generates and evaluates alternatives in an attempt to reach consensus” (p. 358). In this instance the principal would be willing to follow through with the decision of the majority stakeholders. The shared input and decision-making from stakeholders can provide school districts and school leaders with pertinent information to aid in goal attainment. External environments of a school are synonymous with the resources that are accessible by educational stakeholders to achieve the goals of the school or district within the local community or geographical region (Hoy & Miskel, 2008). An organization’s likelihood of improving is based upon the efforts that address authentic needs and by including the shared input from diverse stakeholders (Kowalski, 2008). Educational leaders promote the success of every student by understanding, responding to, and influencing the political, social, economic, legal, and cultural context (Council of Chief State School Officers, 2008, p. 15). School leaders are charged with sharing pertinent information to stakeholders to ensure that they are abreast of the school’s performance, safety, and plan for student growth and development or school improvement plan. The technological advances in the area of communication provide opportunities for school leaders to inform and solicit asynchronous feedback from stakeholders. On-line tools, such as www.ning.com, have the potential to benefit Miller Grove High School in the areas of stakeholder communication and facilitating the decision-making process. The use of paper mail is considered obsolete due to the three to five day delivery time. The on-line communication tool can provide immediate delivery of key information to all stakeholders who have internet access. Currently, there are many methods used by school leaders to communicate with stakeholders. Several methods include family-teacher conferencing, parents and families involved in school governance and decision-making, school volunteer programs, school-community relations, parent involvement to improve student learning, interaction between school and local media, PTA, community partnering organizations, etc. (Hoy & Miskel, 2008). The aforementioned examples provide multiple opportunities for stakeholders to become involved in the educational process primarily through direct face to face contact.
Miller Grove High School is located in a suburban city east of...