An Investigation of the Principal's Communication in the Comer School Development Model

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Virginia Tech


The principal's role has evolved over the past two decades with the accountability demands that are forcing changes in school practices. In the age of school reform, the principal of the twenty-first century must provide the structure; resources and support that schools need to succeed. Research indicated that successful school leadership makes important contributions to the improvement of student learning (Leithwood & Riehl, 2003). One common trait identified that principals consistently demonstrate when exercising leadership is highly developed communication skills (Gurr, Drysdale, & Mulford, 2006). Some principals are finding it increasingly difficult to meet the needs of all students, reduce the achievement gap, find viable strategies for reaching adequate yearly progress, and have chosen to address these critical concerns by implementing school reform models.

The purpose of this qualitative case study was to examine the characteristics of the principal's communication in the operation of the Comer School Development model. The Comer School Development model's emphasis on certain conditions improved the characteristics of the principal's communication with all stakeholders. This information can be beneficial to principals in any school as well as a Comer School Development model to improve school effectiveness. Data collection included: (a) descriptive data, (b) one principal interview, (c) focus group (n=6) (d) seven observations, (e) and the results discussed in themes.



Communication, Effective School Leadership, Reform Models, Principals' Practices, School, Comer School Development model