Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


School of Education


This study provides a historical analysis of the 1995 Chicago School Reform Act, as well as an analysis of the tenures of Chicago Public Schools Chief Executive Officers Paul Vallas and Arne Duncan. It provides an analysis of words and actions of the two CEOs through the interpretive framework of Thomas Serviovanni's Five Sources of Authority. The sources of authority are bureaucratic, psychological, technical-rational, professional and moral. Each source of authority represents certain assumptions that are dominant if the particular source is primarily utilized.

This dissertation will answer six questions through the lens of Sergiovanni's Five Sources of Authority: What were the skills, knowledge and dispositions that Mayor Daley sought from the CEO position for Paul Vallas; what were the skills knowledge and dispositions that the mayor sought for the CEO position for Arne Duncan; how did Paul Vallas and Arne Duncan respectively fulfill the CEO role, how did the leadership styles of the two CEOs compare; and what implications does the CEO model have for school governance and school leadership.

Newspaper sources such as the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun-Times provided a rich source of data for the purposes of analyzing the words and actions of the CEOs related to how they fulfilled their roles. Board reports and proceedings gathered from the Harold Washington Library as well as the Chicago Public School website were greatly utilized, along with primary documents held at the Chicago Public Schools archives located at the CPS Central Offices located in downtown Chicago.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.