Creating a Positive School Culture in Newly Opened Schools

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Title: Creating a Positive School Culture in Newly Opened Schools
Author: Holmes, Michael Todd
Advisors: Lance Fusarelli, Committee Chair
Abstract: The purpose of this study was to determine the most effective practices by school administrators when creating school culture in newly opened schools. Using semi-structured interviews, four principals who opened a new school were interviewed individually and in a focus group. The constant comparative method was used to analyze the data. Two themes emerged from the data. First, principals at new schools should spend a significant amount of time ensuring quality staff members are hired. Additionally, once hired, principals are responsible for providing appropriate professional development activities to better prepare staff members to meet the challenges of opening a new school. Second, principals must find a balance between their role as principal of the school and their personal and family lives. This balance takes three forms: 1) Shared Responsibility, 2) Manager vs. Instructional Leader, and 3) Personal and Family Responsibilities. Limitations to the study included generalization to other studies, personal biases and objectivity on the part of the researcher, small sample size and lack of a high school participant. By applying what has worked, and avoiding what was not successful, administrators are in a better position to ensure a smooth opening, a satisfied school community, and, most importantly, successful students, all which are reflective of the school’s culture.
Date: 2009-07-20
Degree: EdD
Discipline: Educational Administration and Supervision
URI: http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/resolver/1840.16/4899


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