Assessing School Leader Effectiveness

Lee Alvoid and Beverly L. Weiser

in Education

ISBN: 9780199756810
Published online December 2011 | | DOI:
Assessing School Leader Effectiveness

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  • Organization and Management of Education
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The urgency in the first decade of the 21st century to scrutinize American student achievement, compared with global competition, has resulted in a greater emphasis in the literature on the role and influence of school leaders in relation to student outcomes. As a result of this emphasis on accountability, researchers have aimed to determine the relationship between successful school leadership behaviors and practices and their effect on increasing teacher effectiveness and student achievement outcomes. Although an attempt was made to include the empirically validated research, much of the literature and research on linking principal leadership skills, knowledge, and actions to academic performance is qualitative in nature, meaning that findings are generally based on surveys, interviews, questionnaires, self-report checklists, and researcher observations. Accounting for the variability that principals contribute to raising teacher knowledge, teacher instructional abilities, student motivation, and student academic achievement has confounded researchers and statisticians for many reasons. Most of all, it is very difficult to control for such variables as teacher experience, teacher training and content knowledge, principal preparation programs, the resources available for professional development and continuing education, the community and family involvement in a school, and the presence or lack of research-based curriculum materials and resources. Fortunately, researchers, program evaluation specialists, educational agencies, and foundations have begun designing mixed-method and quantitative research studies isolating the areas of influence that school leaders can have and tying those areas directly to student achievement results. Summary findings from national reports, policy briefs, journal articles, online sources, and books that represent early-21st-century evidence-based principal behaviors, qualities, skills, and preparation programs directly related to improving teaching instruction and student achievement have been included in this article. Although empirically validated evidence linking principal performance to student achievement outcomes is limited, and there is need of further research efforts, this article reports on the reliable information on why leaders need to be more accountable for increasing students’ academic performance and how they can achieve this.

Article.  11340 words. 

Subjects: Education ; Organization and Management of Education ; Philosophy and Theory of Education ; Schools Studies ; Teaching Skills and Techniques

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