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ERIC Number: ED548124
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 143
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2673-7485-1
What Types of Support Programs Have Pennsylvania School Districts Established to Aid Principals as Building Leaders?
Melnyk, Stephen A., II.
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Lehigh University
The role of the building principal is a demanding responsibility. Increasing expectations from various stakeholders make a formidable job feel overwhelming to many. In an effort to help principals in their role as building leader, several support programs have been acknowledged as useful aids to assist them. Over time, literature has recognized the use of mentoring, peer coaching, and executive coaching as primary methods to support various positions within the education field. In an effort to gauge the use of these programs by public school principals in Pennsylvania, a quantitative study was conducted. Using a random sampling of the target population, 368 principals participated in the study. Based on the response rate, results were generalizable to building level positions and school district size. Female principals were underrepresented in the study. Findings revealed that mentoring was the most commonly used support program for principals. Conversely, executive coaching was the least used program. In addition, almost one out of every three principals did not have any support program available to them. For principals with no support program options, they conveyed hypothetical benefits of a support program focusing on leadership/management and social interactions/relationships. These respondents also indicated that they had no knowledge why programs were not offered to them and the lack of district funds was posed as the possible reason why such support programs were not available. Principals who had the opportunity to partake in a program generally indicated a positive experience. Similarly, they conveyed the same attitude toward their coaches or mentors. Respondents felt their experiences provided a chance to build professional relationships and strengthen leadership abilities. However, the longer respondents held the title of head principal the less positively they rated the effectiveness of the support program and the quality of the mentor or coach. Based on the study, further research should be conducted on how the various support programs impact building level leadership. More so, researchers should explore how the length of time in a position affects principals' perceptions of needed professional development. [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: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Pennsylvania