Doing the Right Thing Sometimes Difficult, But Always Correct contains fourteen scenarios and solutions. The scenarios are real-life situations the author had to deal with as a principal and superintendent. Doing the right thing is sometimes challenging, but always correct. Each unique scenario is followed by questions that the reader or small groups should consider in a college/university graduate leadership course. These challenging scenarios will require discussions that will differ among each group member or individual and be shared by each group or individual.
The solution section describes what the author did with each scenario and identifies the applicable Professional Standards for Educational Leaders for that scenario. In the author’s nine years of teaching at the University of Northern Iowa, coordinating the superintendent preparation program, and teaching in the principal’s licensure program, he found that just teaching theory and concepts needed to be combined with real-world experiences to mean something to future leaders.
Dewitt Jones, EdD, received his master’s and a doctorate in education administration. He became a middle and high school principal, a superintendent, college professor and retired after fifty years of educational administration.
Part One – Scenarios
Scenario #1 – Loaded Gun in Elementary School
Scenario #2 - Drum Line
Scenario #3 – Motorcycle Ride
Scenario #4 – Arena Conferences – Missing Teacher
Scenario #5 - Newspaper Conflict
Scenario #6 - Parent Demand
Scenario #7 - Marching Band Sousaphones
Scenario #8 - Closing an Elementary School
Scenario #9 - Receptionist and Maintenance Assistant
Scenario #10 - Flag Girls
Scenario #11 - Bus Driver
Scenario #12 - Superintendent’s Daughter
Scenario #13 – Assistant Superintendent
Scenario #14 – Principal Issues
Scenario #15 – Bananas
Scenario # 16 - Affair
Scenario #17 - Politics
Part Two – Scenario Solutions
Solution #1 – Loaded Gun in Elementary School
Solution #2 - Drum Line
Solution #3 – Motorcycle Ride
Solution #4 – Arena Conferences – Missing Teacher
Solution #5 - Newspaper Conflict
Solution #6 - Parent Demand
Solution #7 - Marching Band Sousaphones
Solution #8 - Closing an Elementary School
Solution #9 - Receptionist and Maintenance Assistant
Solution #10 - Flag Girls
Solution #11 - Bus Driver
Solution #12 - Superintendent’s Daughter Solution
Solution #13 – Assistant Superintendent
Solution #14 – Principal Issues
Solution #15 – Bananas
Solution #16 – Affair
Solution #17 - Politics
About the Author
School leadership can look easy from the safety of a classroom discussion. In Doing the Right Thing, Dewitt Jones leverages a lifetime of leadership experience and passion to create a must-have resource for aspiring and practicing school leaders. The scenarios challenge readers to apply standards, critique leaders’ actions, and reflect on how they would approach each situation. Rich with context and complexity, Doing the Right Thing is a powerful tool that stretches readers’ comfort zones as they unpack these intense dilemmas and articulate what constitutes the right thing and why.
In Doing the Right Thing, Dewitt Jones provides a vast array of learning opportunities for current and future educational leaders to examine how to handle different leadership challenges. The scenarios provided may have multiple solutions on how to solve them, but it always comes back to the key concept that, as leaders, we must always do the right thing for students and staff.
Dewitt Jones has run the gamut of educational leadership positions in his lifetime…from classroom teacher to principal to superintendent to serving as an Associate Professor at the University of Northern Iowa. For almost two decades, he served as my principal and superintendent in a growing district in central Iowa…the Norwalk Community School District. Throughout those years, I grew to appreciate his dedication to the field of education and his leadership abilities. He could always relate to students, parents, and staff with ease…and a sense of humor to boot! Articulate and knowledgeable…and persuasive. You just knew he would be successful as he honed his craft. And he was.