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ERIC Number: EJ1048056
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Oct
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 63
Separating Wheat from Chaff: How Secondary School Principals' Core Values and Beliefs Influence Decision-Making Related to Mandates
Larsen, Donald E.; Hunter, Joseph E.
International Journal of Educational Leadership Preparation, v9 n2 p71-90 Oct 2014
Research conducted by Larsen and Hunter (2013, February) identified a clear pattern in secondary school principals' decision-making related to mandated change: more than half of participants' decisions were based on core values and beliefs, requiring value judgments. Analysis of themes revealed that more than half of administrative decisions require secondary principals to make value-based judgments by filtering issues through their core values and beliefs. This ethics-based decision-making is evident in both black and white issues, and in more complex and nuanced circumstances. The research presented in this article extends the initial examination (Larsen & Hunter, 2013, February), confirming that decision-making must consider non-rational variables, and that political and structural variables complicate what may at first look like a straightforward decision. The research questions that guided this study were: • How are principals' core values and beliefs manifested in their descriptions of thought processes that attend decision-making? • To what extent, or in what circumstances, may those espoused values be modified or displaced by mandates that emanate from the district, state, or federal level? • How, if at all, do principals resolve the cognitive disequilibrium that a mandate creates when it conflicts with their espoused core values? The current study documents how secondary principals weigh mandates, compare those against their core values, and then consider how to meet the prescribed requirement while maintaining their commitment to their core values.
Descriptors: Principals, Secondary Schools, Values, Administrator Attitudes, Decision Making, Federal Legislation, State Legislation, School Districts, Cognitive Processes, Educational Change, Organizational Change, Instructional Leadership, Administrator Behavior, Mixed Methods Research, Online Surveys, Measures (Individuals), Interviews, Teacher Evaluation, Discipline
NCPEA Publications. Web site: http://www.ncpeapublications.org
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A