Date of Award

Spring 2016

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Foundations & Leadership

Committee Director

Kern L. Sanzo

Committee Member

Jay Scribner

Committee Member

Joy Howard


The role of the principal role has become very complex with the increased focus on accountability and student achievement. Principals can no longer do their jobs alone. Distributed leadership has been the subject of considerable educational research and discourse in recent years. This study explores how principals employ or do not employ distributed leadership with their staffs. The study found that the school principal plays a key role in supporting the school by communicating a common purpose, that distributed leadership is developed within a school climate built upon collaboration, the principal models leadership using tools and routines, and situational decision making requires principals to make the decisions on their own.

The results of this study provide additional information for future research to continue to define the behaviors and practices of principals that support a distributed leadership model.


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