Date of Award


Degree Type

Master's Essay - Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Education (MEd)




In the administrative structure of American schools the secondary school principalship was the first established position "Ante-dating both the superintendency and the elementary school principalship." Originally, the position was appropriately titled "principal teacher" since the position in the school was held by a master teacher who had a full time teaching assignment as was also responsible for the general operation of the school. It was only after the populations of high schools increased, and the operation of the schools became more complex that the principalship became a full time position.

This brief digression on the development of the principalship is necessary for the understanding of the development of the position of the assistant principalship. While the position of the assistant principalship. While the position is relatively new in the administrative structure, its development paralleled that of the principalship. The assistant principalship was established approximately fifty years ago in response to the growing demands made on the time of the principal. High school populations and increased. Curricular and extra curricular programs became more diverse. Principals were required to attend more out-of-school meetings with members of the central office staff and other professional organizations. There was a need for an authority figure to replace the principal in his absence. For these reasons the principal was given an assistant. In its earliest inception the role was primarily a clerical one with greater professionalization coming only during the last thirty years.