Principals' Perceptions of Knowledge, Skills, and Attributes (KSAs) of Effective School Principals



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Williams, Robin. “Principals’ Perceptions of Knowledge, Skills, and Attributes (KSAs) of Effective School Principals.” Unpublished Doctor of Education Dissertation, University of Houston, December, 2010.

Abstract This study addresses the knowledge, skills, and attributes of success school principals from the perspective of 310 practicing principals from a large metropolitan area in the Gulf Coast region of Southeast Texas. Although the duties and responsibilities of the principal have escalated and intensified in complexity over the years, the expectations of the principal are twofold, to provide instructional leadership, in addition to, managing the day to day functions of the school. Time, social factors, and economic trends have served as catalysts for determining what knowledge, skills, and attributes are necessary for successful school leadership. With the current accountability system created by the No Child Left Behind legislation (2002), principals must be astute in determining educational goals, fiscal constraints, personnel issues, curriculum development, and functional use of time and space. They are required to provide leadership in revamping the school and district. Barth (1990) reported there is a shortage of knowledge concerning the skills that are essential to be a successful school leader; especially since there have been changes in the expectations of the role of principal.
This paper empirically explores the results of over 300 surveyed principals’ perceptions of the knowledge, skills, and attributes necessary for successful principals in the 21st century. The Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) will be used for all data analyses. Descriptive statistics will be reported for all variables. An analysis of variance (ANOVA) will be used to determine if there are statistically significant differences on the survey items by principal and school demographics. The findings for the current study will be useful for future and practicing administrators, in addition to, institutions who provide principal’s certification.