And Gladly Would She Learn: Margaret Willis and the Ohio State University School

  • Craig Kridel


Can educators live successful, gratifying careers while remaining in the classroom? Can teachers emerge as school leaders without ever taking administrative reins? The career of Margaret Willis (1899–1987) causes one to examine these questions carefully, as well as to reconsider our conceptions of feminist leadership and progressive education.1 With recent efforts to establish career ladders that permit teachers to “move up the rungs” yet not to climb out of the classroom, the professional career of Margaret Willis becomes all the more relevant. Willis represents “the” classroom teacher—one who was satisfied to work with secondary school youth throughout her 47-year career. Thirty-six years were devoted to one specific institution—the Ohio State University School. She arrived as a member of the first faculty in 1932 and retired in 1967, with the close of the University High School (after three years of protest against the decision to discontinue the school), just one month before the final high school commencement exercises.


Progressive Education Creative Adventurer Science Research Design Laboratory School Wellesley College 
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Copyright information

© Alan R. Sadovnik, Susan F. Semel 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Craig Kridel

There are no affiliations available

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