Job Satisfaction of Middle School Principals in Virginia
The purpose of this study was to assess job satisfaction of middle school principals in Virginia as measured by the Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire (MSQ). The primary question addressed by the study was: What is the general satisfaction level of middle school principals in Virginia as measured by the Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire? In addition to the primary question, three sub-questions were addressed by the study. They were: a) What is the general satisfaction level according to the demographic variables gender, age, degree, experience, school location, and school size? b) what is the satisfaction level for each of the 20 dimensions of the job measured by the MSQ? and c) what is the satisfaction level for the 20 dimensions of the job according to the demographic variables gender, age, degree, experience, school location, and school size?
One hundred eighty-eight middle school principals in Virginia selected from the 1997-98 Virginia Educational Directory were surveyed with the Individual Data Sheet and the Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire. Demographic data pertaining to gender, age, experience, degree, school location, and school size were collected through use of the Individual Data Sheet. The 1967 Long-Form Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire was used to measure job satisfaction. This instrument utilized a 20-dimension Likert-type scale with five response alternatives ranging from "Not Satisfied" (weighted 1) to "Extremely Satisfied" (weighted 5). On this scale, the general satisfaction score for the respondents resulted in a mean of 3.65 (SD= .57) indicating that these principals are "Satisfied" (3.00-3.99) with their jobs. According to the demographic variables, all general satisfaction scores were within the "Satisfied" range. The mean scores for the 20 dimensions ranged from "Slightly Satisfied" (2.00-2.99) to "Very Satisfied" (4.00-4.99). Compensation ranked the lowest in the hierarchy ( M=2.83, SD=.94), and Social Service ranked the highest ( M=4.19, SD= .73). Demographically, females were significantly more satisfied with Activity and Variety than males; younger and older principals were significantly more satisfied with Activity than middle aged principals; principals with educational specialist degrees were significantly more satisfied with Achievement than doctorate and masters principals; principals from suburban schools were significantly more satisfied with Compensation, Supervision, and Working Conditions than urban and rural principals, and principals at large schools were significantly more satisfied with General Satisfaction, Advancement, and Security than principals from small schools.
Recommendations for further research included conducting a study of principal satisfaction and student performance; conduct a comparative investigation of elementary, middle and secondary principal satisfaction; investigate principal satisfaction and school size, and study job satisfaction of principals using the interview technique or an open-ended survey instrument.