Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

How do principals create a working environment to support teacher retention?
by Domers, Ted M., Ed.D., University of Pennsylvania, 2015, 192; 3746345
Abstract (Summary)

The high rate of turnover for K–12 teachers, especially those working in urban schools, is well documented. Accompanying this research is a range of interventions to limit teacher movement and thus create more cohesive and effective schools. While the role of the principal is recognized as a critical element in teacher retention, few studies explore how principals see their roles in impacting teacher retention. To examine this question and propose practical solutions to better support teachers and principals, this study examines a range of structures in schools that principals might use to shape their school’s culture and provide better supports for their teachers.

Through a survey, case study, and interviews, the study assesses the working conditions in schools and its implications for teacher retention in a large urban school district. In doing so, the study uses a mixed-methods approach to analyze the intersection of the nature of the teaching occupation, working conditions of schools, causes of teacher turnover, and the principal’s role. The findings that emerge from the data offers a fresh perspective to consider the ways in which principals can consider their influence, involvement, and position to support teachers and influence the working environment of a school.

The recommendations from the study seek to honor the complexities inherent in a school organization, given the tremendous range of responsibilities bestowed upon teachers and principals. They are relevant to a range of stakeholders in K–12 educational communities, including researchers, policymakers, and practitioners.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Quinn, Rand
Commitee: Ball, Earl, Kitzmiller, Erika, Rust, Frances
School: University of Pennsylvania
Department: Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education
School Location: United States -- Pennsylvania
Source: DAI-A 77/06(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Educational leadership, School administration
Keywords: Principals, Teacher retention, Working environment
Publication Number: 3746345
ISBN: 978-1-339-39666-8
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