Principal Effectiveness: Middle School Leaders' Perceptions Of Principal Practices To Improve Middle School Reading Achievement
McLaughlin, Margaret J
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ABSTRACT Title of Document: PRINCIPAL EFFECTIVENESS: MIDDLE SCHOOL LEADERS’ PERCEPTIONS OF PRINCIPAL PRACTICES TO IMPROVE MIDDLE SCHOOL READING ACHIEVEMENT Kathleen R. Brady, Doctor of Education, 2016 Directed By: Dr. John Norris, Department of Education The purpose of this exploratory and descriptive study was to examine school leaders’ perceptions of leadership practices that contribute to principal effectiveness in improving reading achievement in middle schools in a large public school district. The data was gathered through the use of a Web-based survey that was emailed to 97 school based leaders including 20 principals, 40 assistant principals, 17 reading department chairpersons, and 20 professional development lead teachers in middle schools with grade 6-8 and 7-8 configurations. Data were collected and analyzed in order to make inferences about principal practices at middle school. The findings of this study indicated few differences between middle school principals’, assistant principals’, reading department chairpersons’, and professional development lead teachers’ perceptions of principal leadership practices that are most important to and have the greatest impact on student reading achievement success. Furthermore, the findings indicated that participants’ three top ranked resources needed to increase the effectiveness of principals in order to improve reading achievement at middle schools include implementing a collaborative planning protocol to support literacy instruction, adding a reading coach to the middle school staff, and providing professional development activities focused on literacy instruction across the content areas. The results were used to make recommendations that may contribute to middle school principal effectiveness.