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ERIC Number: ED521006
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 241
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1242-5797-6
A View from the Principal's Office: A Grounded-Theory Exploration of Principals' Perceptions of Non-Academic Barriers to Learning--Implications for School Social Work
Prather, JoNataye Arnitra
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, The Ohio State University
The importance of the principal has been found to be a critical factor in student and school success. School principal responsibilities traditionally encompass operations and management. However, many principals are unable to fulfill these expectations because of students' social and behavioral issues. Consequently, this qualitative study explored principals' perceptions, experiences, and resources needed to address non-academic barriers to learning. Tape-recorded semi-structured interviews, non-participant observations, and a demographic questionnaire provided the sources for data collection. The purposive sample was comprised of 19 principals from urban and suburban schools. Grounded-theory methods and a computer-assisted qualitative data analysis software program were used to analyze data. Following data analysis, four major themes emerged: (1) the hustle; (2) support from home; (3) it-factor; and (4) student baggage. Additionally, three sub-themes emerged: (a) relationship building; (b) the need for additional pupil-support services; and (c) university training. The findings revealed that principals believe that specific resources are needed to address non-academic barriers to learning, including: (1) additional pupil-support staff; (2) more parental involvement to bridge home to school; (3) collegiate courses on non-academic barriers; and (4)educator training on rapport-building skills. The results of this study provide information for educators to identify gaps in knowledge preparation to work more effectively with students and families. The results also inform educators of pupil-support service staff of appropriate methods for combating non-academic barriers to learning and providing resources in schools. This study is beneficial for school social workers for understanding the needs of education administrators, resource service gaps in school systems, and avenues to advocate for change with education reform policies. Recommendations for school social work research, practice, and education are included. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A