Book Review

Stepping into Administration

How to Succeed in Making the Move

by Thomas A. Kersten, Rowman & Littlefield Education, Lanham, Md., 2010, 132 pp. with index, $50 hardcover, $22.95 softcover


With the baby boomer generation retiring and many entry-level administrative positions coming open in schools, this is an appropriate time to invest in a book on preparing and mentoring new leaders to the profession. Stepping into Administration: How to Succeed in Making the Move, by Thomas A. Kersten, explores the journey from preparing for an administrative career through the first year in an educational administrative position.



To successfully transition from teacher to administrator depends on a blend of knowledge, leadership skills and personal qualities. Educational leadership graduate program studies give teachers an opportunity to prepare for the transition. Field internships provide valuable insights that go beyond course work.

However, nothing can prepare you fully for that first year on the job as an administrator. The learning curve is steep.

Stepping into Administration is practical and an easy read through 10 chapters, each focusing on a different aspect, such as developing an entry plan, building relationships within the school and managing a budget. The two most valuable chapters are how to hire and evaluate teachers and how to oversee inclusive special education. The last chapter gives excellent tips on effective time management.

The book is up-to-date and emphasizes 21st-century instructional leadership. It also addresses how to efficiently use electronic communication and social media.

Reviewed by Diane E. Reed, co-director, graduate educational leadership program, St. John Fisher College, Rochester, N.Y.