Date of Award

5-1-1998

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ed.D.

Department

Department of Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Claudette Williams

Abstract

This study served a dual purpose: (1) to assess thedegree to which principals received the practices that current literature describes as being advantageous in an induction program for newly appointed principals; and (2) to recommend a literature-based, principal influenced principal induction program for the DeKalb County School System. Current literature in the field provides sparse information on needs of newly hired principals during their infant years and strategies used in school districts to induct principals. Through this study's description of induction experiences stated as advantageous to an induction program, educators and school systems can gain insight into induction practices that could assist principals during their first three years of school leadership. The subjects of the study were 155 principals active during the 1996-97 school year in the metropolitan Atlanta RESA. In this quantitative investigation, data for the study were obtained through a 142-item questionnaire that focused on induction practices research indicated were important for newly hired principals. These induction practices were clustered into seven construct areas: Personal Aspects of Induction, Time Periods of Induction, Job-Specific Content, Profession-Specific Content, Induction Focus, Mentoring, and Sequencing Induction Activities. Mean scores indicated that principals rated all seven constructs at an inadequate to less than adequate level of received induction. The respondents stated each induction construct was important to include in an induction program for newly hired principals. The ANOVA test revealed significant differences in the principals' perception of the induction they received with respect to Personal Aspects of Induction, Job-Specific Content, Profession-Specific Content, and Induction Focus practices. A difference was also found in the category pertinent to years of current principalship experience. The findings indicated that the induction practices considered important by current literature and principals were not being received during the first three years of principalship. Recommendations for implementing or improving a formal school district induction program should follow the seven construct areas, with a special focus on formalization of an induction plan, planning thorough school and community orientation, and mentoring.

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