Teacher reported leadership characteristics affecting the organizational health of urban K-8 schools

Date of Award


Degree Name

Ph.D. in Educational Leadership


Department of Educational Leadership


Advisor: C. Daniel Raisch


The purpose of this study was to ascertain contributing leadership factors that teachers describe as influencing the overall climate, culture, and organizational health of a K-8 school in an urban setting. Specifically, the research question was What are the leadership characteristics identified by teachers as affecting the overall organizational health of high achieving K-8 schools in an urban Midwestern city?" A qualitative research approach was used to examine the research question. Three K-8 buildings in the Columbus City School District were selected, each with long tenured, female principals. A total of twenty teachers and administrators chose to participate in the study. After first confirming that each building was seen by teachers to have strong organizational health, each was asked a series of interview questions, designed to determine in what ways teachers believed the principal to influence the climate, culture, and health of their building. An inductive approach to data analysis (Merriam, 1988) was utilized in order to identify emergent themes centered on the research question. First, teacher reported contributions to the building's success that did not directly involve the principal were removed and reported separately. Data analysis was again employed and four common themes or characteristics then emerged, centered on the principal's influence on each building. These are: (1) advocacy, (2) support of teachers, (3) communication, and (4) temperament. Implications of these findings on practice are presented as well as recommendations for future research."


Quality of work life Ohio Columbus, Teacher-principal relationships Ohio Columbus, School personnel management Ohio Columbus, School principals Ohio Columbus, Education; educational leadership; principal; leadership; climate; culture; urban; organizational health; K-8 school; high acheiving; advocacy; support of teachers; communication; temperament

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