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ACEF Journal Vol 3 Issue 1 December 2012

Klocko claimed, “Understanding democracy strictly as governance distances educators’ understanding of participatory leadership and engagement (i.e., “associated living”) and thwarts social justice education” (p. 139). In a study of 30 green schools built in 10 states between 2001 and 2006, Kats (2006) revealed that green schools use approximately 33% less energy than conventionally designed schools and building green would save enough money to pay for an additional full-time teacher. Furthermore, school buildings use 25% more energy than they need because of past design approaches or deferred maintenance (Collins, 2007). Retrofitting and/or designing schools that employ green practices may be the best defense a school district has to combat the non- negotiable budget impact of increased energy costs (DiNola & Guerra, 2002). Superintendent as Sensemaker The superintendent as decision-maker responds in an adaptive way to cope with significant changes in the external environments in order to keep the basic structures of the internal environment intact. According to Senge’s (1990) systems theory, school leaders who study the organization as a whole, with special consideration of the interrelationships among its parts as well as its relationship with the external environment will make better decisions and lead more effectively. However, there has been a shift toward examination of naturalistic decision- making models that give more attention to situational assessment and sensemaking (Klein, 2008). Naturalistic decision-making is an ongoing process designed to make meaning from all available information. Gilmore and Murphy (1991) defined sensemaking as the “process whereby individuals attend to certain phenomena or variables more than others, so that they punctuate or punch out certain facets from complex streams of experience” (p. 394). Weick (1995) argued that in addressing crisis or change, leaders play a central role through sensemaking. In sensemaking, leaders create a cognitive structure for understanding and responding to the events experienced during crisis or change. According to Klein, Moon, and Hoffman (2006): By sensemaking, modern researchers seem to mean something different from creativity, comprehension, curiosity, mental modeling, explanation, or situational awareness, although all these factors or phenomena can be involved in or related to sensemaking. Sensemaking is a motivated, continuous effort to understand connections (which can be among people, places, and events) in order to anticipate their trajectories and act effectively. (p. 71) Naturalistic perspectives such as systems and sensemaking offer a richer methodology than classical decision-making theory or rational decision-making (Lunenburg & Ornstein, 2008). Weick’s(1995) synthesis of sensemaking described it as “the ways people generate what they interpret” (p. 13). Weick (1995) pointed out several tenets important to the concept of sensemaking. First, sensemaking is socially constructed, negotiated, and contested through a shared process. Thus, individuals’ sensemaking is derived from the interplay of meanings and actions between one’s self and others. Second, sensemaking is context specific and value-laden. The ways in which people make sense depends on the cues they receive from multiple, overlapping contexts. 59 Vol. 3, No. 1, 2012


ACEF Journal Vol 3 Issue 1 December 2012
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