Texas has more than 5 million public school students spread over 1,000 school districts. Women make up the vast majority of the teachers in Texas, but they hit a glass ceiling on their way to becoming superintendent.
Our research identifies gender disparities in the makeup of K-12 school district leadership throughout Texas:
Women are a minority in school district leadership
- More than 75% of teachers are women, but approximately 25% of school district superintendents are women
How we recruit new superintendents reinforces that disparity
- Regardless of who conducts the process – search firms, law firms, school boards – there is no process where women reach parity in hiring
Women face uneven – and unseen – barriers to achieving district leadership
- Our interviews with women leaders repeatedly cite informal connections men have to move ahead in their careers
Our Call to Action
Texas needs to call on the full range of its professional talent to lead its school districts.
To get there, policymakers, practitioners, and other stakeholders must:
1. Prioritize gender equity in recruitment and selection
2. Make the search and hiring process transparent
3. Establish policies that support families and contribute to general wellbeing
4. Compensate women leaders fairly
5. Foster systems to support women and women of color seeking leadership
Read our report The State of Superintendency and Gender in Texas for more about our research and how we can make progress toward gender equality.