Supervisory Options for Instructional Leaders in Education

The principal purpose of this article was to identify supervisory approaches available to instructional leaders in education. Selected supervisory approaches served as the basis for creating the Supervisory Options for Instructional Leaders (SOIL) Model. Instructional leaders in a variety of educational settings could use this model. The SOIL Model is divided into three levels of supervision. The supervisory approaches included in each level are placed along a continuum of reward and risk. Reward is defined as “something given or offered for some service or attainment” (Mish, 1989, p. 628). Risk is defined by Mish (1989) as “the exposure to possible loss or injury” (p. 632). As the instructional leader and teacher develop in the supervisory process, it is proposed that the approach of supervision used should change. As professional readiness increases and as the circumstances dictate, the instructional leader should progress in an upward direction on the continuum and facilitate more teacher-directed approaches of supervision. With teacher-directed approaches of supervision, instructional leaders and teachers may experience greater reward from the supervisory process.