School leaders reflect on the principal quality practice guideline and implications for capacity building in one rural school division

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Thompson, George Jeffrey
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Education
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Dept. of Education, 2009
The introduction of the Principal Quality Practice Guideline (PQPG) in 2007 by Alberta Education brought forth the question of whether or not school based leaders in Alberta School Division #1 (ASD#1) felt confident to meet the demands as presented by the dimension in the PQPG. Once confidence levels were determined I was also interested in determining how to most effectively build the professional capacity of these leaders as informed by the PQPG. Researched-based key characteristics of highly effective school leadership program design and delivery were examined and compared to perceived priorities of ASD#1 school based leaders. A literature review was completed to determine the key characteristics of effective school leadership development program design and delivery. These program elements were then offered to ASD#1 school based leaders to prioritize and evaluate. The study employed both qualitative and quantitative methods of data collection. A quantitative survey was developed and distributed to 57 ASD#1 principals and vice principals which was then supported by a qualitative interview conducted with eight ASD#1 school based leaders. ASD#1 school based leaders indicated they were highly confident in meeting the demands of the PQPG. The study highlighted the strong support ASD#1 school based leaders have for the key characteristics of leadership program design elements for building capacity. These effective elements included: researched-based curriculum, coherence between curriculum goals and shared values and beliefs, field-based internships supported by expert practitioners, extensive use of problem-based learning strategies, use of collaboration in practice-oriented situations, use of mentoring and coaching, a strong partnerships between school districts and post-secondary institutions, vigorous recruitment of highly qualified candidates and v instructors, and a adoption and promotion of the philosophy of career long learning . ASD#1 school based leaders also strongly supported the research in their perception that the most effective method of delivering this program would be a balance of the practical and the theoretical through a partnership between the local school division and a postsecondary institution. A major outcome of this study was a recommendation for adoption of these key characteristics of effective school leadership program design and delivery to the ASD#1 school board and senior administration through the development of a school based leadership development program.
xii, 190 leaves ; 29 cm
School principals -- Alberta , Educational leadership -- Alberta , School management and organization -- Alberta , Dissertations, Academic