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ERIC Number: ED552066
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 180
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2678-7923-3
The Catholic School Leader as Change Agent: Case Studies of Two Catholic School Principals
Nardelli, Betty
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Capella University
The purpose of this replicated study was to discover the critical dimensions of leadership demonstrated by two Catholic school principals who successfully facilitated change in their schools, and the strategies and skills they practice to create that change. These leaders were deemed effective because they were recommended by the Assistant Superintendent of the Diocese due to their longevity and ability to effectively facilitate change and school improvement. Qualitative and quantitative methods of research were used to investigate the research questions. A survey was given to teachers in each school in order to identify critical dimensions of leadership, and the qualitative methods used to reveal the strategies and skills practiced by each principal that facilitate change were: principal and teacher interviews, observations, and document analysis. The conceptual framework for the school leader as change agent that guided this study was built from a synthesis of literature related to leadership, Catholic schools, and school change. The framework identified seven critical dimensions of leadership practiced by change agents: inspires a shared vision, focuses on culture, challenges existing practices, models integrity, provides support, fosters dialogue and learning, and develops leadership capacities. Findings indicate that all of these dimensions are critical to the leadership of each principal and revealed successful practices within each of the critical dimensions. Findings revealed an additional critical dimension which emerged: builds external support, focusing on the ability of the leader to establish partnerships, and access additional resources that create, support and sustain change. In concluding it was found that a strong commitment to personal vision drives school visions and facilitates change and each of the dimensions are critical to creating change despite differences in personality and leadership style. It is recommended that the framework in this study be used with a larger sample of school leaders in charter and private schools to determine if these findings are exclusive to Catholic schools. [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:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A