ERIC Number: ED406733
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1997-Feb
Principals' Values: Coming to Shared Purposes through a Values-Laden Sense of Identity?
Petersen, Wesley O.
An organization originates in order to serve consciously developed purposes. In addition, school leaders perform in contexts in which core purposes are rarely certain. This paper presents findings of a study that examined the relationship between principals' and teachers' values and the role that values play in coming to agreement. The paper focuses on the role that values play in shaping common identity. Data were derived from document analysis and interviews with principals and teachers from two lower socioeconomic parochial schools, one of which had been rated by supervisors to be highly purposive and one that had been rated as distinctly less purposive. The sample consisted of a total of 2 principals and 13 teachers. The more purposive principal and the less purposive principal and their respective teachers displayed significantly different identities, with the less purposive school members demonstrating relatively small levels of common identity compared to personnel in the more purposive setting. The most important finding was that the more purposive principal and her teachers used many shared values to interpret and explain internal and external environments and their relationships to those environments, while the members of the less purposive school did not. It is important for school leaders to take advantage of the potency of values to shape a shared sense of organizational identity and organizational purposes. Six tables are included. (Contains 57 references.) (LMI)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Eastern Educational Research Association (Hilton Head, SC, February 1997).