Want to see what publications and professional book reviewers think of What Every Superintendent and Principal Needs to Know?

From David Turner, Executive Director, Illinois Principals Association:

We have a short list of "must read" books for principals. What Every Superintendent and Principal Needs to Know is at the top of the list.

When they start thinking about moving to the superintendency, they should read it again. Where else could they find the best practices from three successful careers crammed into one book?


From the Illinois Principals Association Newsletter, August 2003:

Illinois Authors--Three Illinois Superintendents who are very closely related to IPA and well known to IPA members, Jim Rosborg, Max McGee and Jim Burgett, have collaborated on a new book, What Every Superintendent and Principal Need to Know: School Leadership in the Real World.

In the introduction, the publisher writes, "We tried to cram as much practical how-to stuff into 320 pages as we could." They did a good job! The book is written in a rather conversational tone. As you read you can imagine being in a workshop with one of the authors and listening to a humorous antidote that contains a big message about running a school or doing the right thing. Doing the right thing is a big part of this book, not just in Burgett's chapter on Civic Leadership and Ethics, but in every chapter on nearly every page are reminders about leadership behavior.

You can find almost any topic that presents a challenge to school leaders in the index. From accountability to zero tolerance, from band instruments to wellness, a tip is in the book. If you want to become a better principal or dean, or perhaps see the superintendency in your future, you should read this book. There is a companion website,, that contains additional information. The book is available from Education Communication Unlimited for $24.95 by calling (800) 563-1454 or by e-mailing an order to

(Editors note: This past summer, IPA held the first Tom Howard Leadership Symposium, "Crafting a Culture of Success," with Rosborg, McGee and Burgett presenting a three-day leadership program on their book.)


From Eric Skoog, Principal, Antioch Upper Grade School, Lake County, Illinois

First, I'm a sycophant of your writing: the book has assisted me no end. Our job can be zany but its importance can be as lasting as humanity. I have a word of wisdom that has proven effective in my brief seven years at the principal's desk. It involves parents not returning calls regarding their children. I consider a child's education the most important issue of their life. It is an emergency when parents do not respond to those calls. If a parent doesn't call back, I don't let it go. They have two days and then I call the emergency contact, explaining that the school needs to have parental involvement. The emergency contact has always found a way to contact a guardian and the issue gets support (and perhaps a little healthy pressure) outside the school walls. Parents are sometimes angered that a call is issued to the emergency contact. I remind the parent that I did not discuss details of the issue and that I only needed them to contact me about their child's issue. It is an emergency!"


From Melissa Ezarik, New Products Editor, District Administration:

What Every Superintendent and Principal Needs to Know.  Three Illinois superintendents share good advice and good humor on what works and what doesnt in educational leadership. Topics range from assessment issues and building trust to getting referenda passed and what to say to the press and when.  More than 336 pages, the authors offer leadership lessons learned and ideas for everyday problem solving. Readers are asked to share their own leadership ideas to be posted on a special section of the books Web site.


From James Cox, Editor-in-Chief, The Midwest Book Review:

What Every Superintendent and Principal Needs to Know: School Leadership for the Real World by educational administrators Jim Rosborg, Max McGee, and Jim Burgett, is a highly practical instructional and advisory resource of school leadership ideas and techniques, complete with in-depth advice on what works and what doesn't. From allying with unions to emphasizing ethics in every action to selling business plans to the Board, and more, (the book) truly lives up to its title--and then some!

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