Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Investigating educational systems, leadership, and school culture: A holistic approach
by Pratt, Jill Elizabeth, Ed.D.Ed.Lead., University of Phoenix, 2014, 147; 3583297
Abstract (Summary)

Most populous school districts operate using a bureaucratic hierarchical organizational structure developed primarily for industry, a system structure that has remained intact for a century despite evolving from a manufacturing to a knowledge-based economy. Although strong for efficiency, this system structure is resistant to change and promotes worker isolation, not ideal for a collective educational approach desired in the 21st century. The purpose of this quantitative correlational study was to investigate the relationship among a bureaucratic hierarchical school system structure, principal leadership, and school culture to determine if and how the three variables relate through the collective lens provided by the integral leadership theory (Küpers & Weibler, 2008) and the Full-Range Leadership Theory, or FRLT (Bass & Avolio, 2004). Thirty principals from three urban districts in North Carolina responded to items on the Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire, Form 5X (MLQ Form 5X) and the School Culture Survey (SCS) and four demographic questions. The study’s results revealed that the administrators appear to combine aspects of both transformational and transactional leadership in the urban schools. Each of the six culture factors on the SCS was significant with transformational leadership, and three of the six culture factors, learning partnership, collaborative leadership, and teacher collaboration, were also significant with transactional leadership. A holistic analysis shows that the principals are demonstrating effective leadership with corresponding positive school cultures despite the constraints a bureaucratic hierarchical school district structure presents. The results suggest that the principals are successfully integrating structural context, cultural elements, and leadership in an organizational form not necessarily designed to promote teamwork and collaboration essential for educational success.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Deering, Thomas E.
School: University of Phoenix
Department: Educational Leadership
School Location: United States -- Arizona
Source: DAI-A 75/10(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Educational leadership, School administration
Keywords: Full-range leadership theory, Holism, Integral leadership, Leadership, School administration, School culture, School principal
Publication Number: 3583297
ISBN: 9781321131239