Female administrators and the mentors who give them full support /
Balogh, Stephany L.
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A looming attrition rate, a steady increase in the number of women in administration, and a lack of Canadian research all provided the rationale for this study. The problem in this study was to investigate the needs and challenges of new female administrators and to examine the role that mentors play in addressing these issues. This study also explored the perceived benefits of having a mentor. This study examined the inductive year of 33 female administrators from 3 Ontario school boards. It was a qualitative and quantitative design, using questionnaire and interview data. It was found that the majority felt that they struggled with biases and expectations that were gender specific. The challenges that were perceived to be most prevalent were categorized into 4 thematic areas: Maintaining Balance, Feeling Pressured, The Perceptions of Others, and Being Challenged by Others. Regarding the benefits of mentoring, the participants perceived mentoring to be most beneficial in terms of professional growth, followed by learning how to run a school, and then career advancement. The significance of this study was threefold: it had theoretical implications as well as implications for practice and future research. Suggestions included: facilitating longitudinal relationships, having the board become more actively involved in facilitating the relationship, and implementing an internship program. This study attempted to extend the current literature by theorizing that a mentorship is cyclical in nature. Future research could include program design and implementation, as well as providing consistent and accessible mentoring opportunities for all.