The school principalship is one of the most demanding and misunderstood jobs in American education. As the person in charge of the daily operation of a particular school, the principal is vested with enormous responsibility for the education of students, the supervision of personnel, and the adherence to numerous laws and policies. This professional reference provides practical information for K-12 principals about how to conduct their jobs in the most effective manner. The practical information in the book is informed by a solid discussion of the history of the principalship and the characteristics of effective schools. The bulk of the volume provides valuable information on the legal and business concerns of the principal, the effective management of personnel, the importance of systems theory to effective planning, and the relationship between the school and the community. Throughout the volume, the authors stress that the principal is a leader and a visionary who empowers, rather than merely a manager who oversees tasks.