CHARACTERISTICS AND SKILLS OF SUSTAINED LEADERS OF SUCCESSFUL PUBLIC CHARTER SCHOOLS IN NORTH CAROLINA
1 online resource (172 pages) : PDF
University of North Carolina at Charlotte
ABSTRACTMARIA MARSELLA LEAHY. Characteristics and skills of sustained leaders of successful public charter school in North Carolina. (Under the direction of DR. REBECCA SHORE)Effective school leadership is fundamental to a school’s success and ultimately influences student achievement. Effective leadership may play an even more critical role in public charter school success because of the unique design and autonomy afforded to public charter schools as well as their unique relationship with the community. With the number of public charter schools rising and projections for continued growth, effective public charter school leadership needs to be explored in greater depth. Leadership of a broad range of organizations including traditional and non-traditional public schools has been studied by many researchers and theorists. Leadership theory suggests there are a number of leadership styles, behaviors, and processes such as Servant Leadership Theory and Transformation Leadership Theory. Combining salient findings, research related to school leadership presents several agreed upon essential leadership skills. The limited research related specifically to public charter school leadership supports the need for both instructional leadership skills and managerial leadership skills. This collective case study adds to this limited research by describing skills and characteristics of sustained leaders of successful charter schools in North Carolina. While supporting prior research, this dissertation found that successful leaders are able to understand the needs of their specific school and delegate responsibilities for meeting those needs based on the leaders’ expertise and limitations. Previous literature and evidence from this dissertation present sustained, successful public charter leaders exemplifying individuals who: 1) lead, with unwavering determination, to form a cohesive school culture shared in the greater community based on the school’s unique mission and vision; 2) develop and lead a team consisting of leaders in a variety of areas, both instructional and managerial with the flexibility of sharing leadership roles; 3) build a strong relationship with the community; and 4) hold high expectations of self and others. They are described as 1) supportive and empowering; and 2) positive role models. Possibly the most salient finding in this study is the leaders’ unwavering focus on the schools’ mission and vision while maintaining the flexibility to meet the changing leadership needs as the organizations evolved. Each leader, with his or her unique leadership style led with direction and conviction of mission and vision presented in the original charter, while he or she assured that the instructional and managerial needs of the organization were met. This finding has potential to affect not only public charter school leadership but merits additional research to understand the potential of these leadership skills and characteristics and their impacts on other educational settings.This dissertation proposes additional research on the topic be conducted, and that implementation of programs providing professional development for current and future public charter school leadership be offered. School leadership influences the success of public charter schools which ultimately influences student success.
CHARTER SCHOOL LEADERSHIPCHARTER SCHOOLSNON-TRADITIONAL SCHOOL LEADERSHIPSCHOOL LEADERSHIP CHARACTERISTICSSCHOOL LEADERSHIP SKILLS
Collins, BelvaLim, JaeStylianou, Antonis
Thesis (D.Ed.)--University of North Carolina at Charlotte, 2017.
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