An exploration of the relationship between specific instructional leadership behaviors of elementary principals and student achievement

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1991
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Virginia Tech
Abstract

This study explored the relationship between specific instructional leadership behaviors of elementary principals and student achievement as measured by the Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS). One hundred twenty-five principals were systematically and proportionally selected from Arizona, lowa, and Virginia. Seventy-two percent of the principals met all criteria and agreed to participate.

The Measure of Elementary Principal Instructional Leadership Behavior, MEPILB, was developed for eight teachers at each school (total of 576) to indicate those instructional leadership behaviors demonstrated by their principals. Other data collected and analyzed were fourth grade ITBS mean normal curve equivalent, NCE, scores for two years, 1987-88 and 1989-90; percentage of students on free- and reduced-price meals as a proxy measure of socioeconomic status (SES); percentage of Parent-Teacher Association or organization membership as measure of parental involvement; district per pupil expenditures; and several school and principal demographic information.

A principal components analysis with varimax rotation was performed on the MEPILB results to determine underlying instructional leadership dimensions. Four factors were revealed with two of those significantly associated with student achievement: monitoring instruction and testing (p < .05), and providing instructional feedback (p < .10). When these variables were added in the full regression model with SES, no significance was found between the two instructional leadership factors and student achievement. SES contributed the largest amount of explained variance to student achievement.

The results of this study identified specific instructional leadership behaviors of elementary principals, but these behaviors were not found to significantly contribute to the variance in student achievement.

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