Superintendents' instructional leadership practices and the achievement of students with disabilities and students with limited English proficiency

WCU Author/Contributor (non-WCU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Kathy G. Revis (Creator)
Western Carolina University (WCU )
Web Site:
Sandra Tonnsen

Abstract: The purpose of this study was to discover if there was a statistically significant relationship between the self-reported instructional leadership practices of North Carolina superintendents and the achievement of their students with limited English proficiency (LEP) and students with disabilities (SWDs) as measured by the percent of students who were proficient in reading and mathematics on the North Carolina End-of-Grade assessments. The superintendents? instructional leadership practices were assessed in five areas of superintendent leadership responsibilities as described by Waters and Marzano (2006) whose work was also used as the foundation for the new North Carolina Superintendents Standards. This study concluded that the self-reported instructional leadership behaviors of North Carolina superintendents did not have a significant relationship with the performance of their students with limited English proficiency and students with disabilities. The qualitative data analyzed from the open-ended survey responses provided insight into the practices and programs to which superintendents attributed their success in meeting the Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) standards with students with disabilities and students with limited English proficiency. Two promising program models were identified in the districts with the highest student achievement: Responsiveness to Instruction (RTI) and Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol (SIOP). This information was also compared to responses from superintendents who had the lowest performance with these groups of students. Superintendents from the lowest performing districts identified different programs than those in the districts with the highest performance. Further, superintendents identified challenges their districts have incurred in meeting AYP with these groups of students. The challenges most frequently cited by superintendents were: (1) the lack of funding for additional personnel and materials to meet the diverse needs of these populations; (2) the lack of high expectations for SWDs and LEP students; (3) the lack of ownership of the achievement of SWDs by regular education teachers; and (4) the lack of sustained professional development for teachers.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2010
Instructional leadership, Students with Disabilities, Students with Limited English Proficiency, Superintendents
School management and organization -- North Carolina -- Evaluation
School superintendents -- North Carolina
Educational leadership -- North Carolina
Limited English-proficient students -- North Carolina
Students with disabilities -- North Carolina
Academic achievement -- North Carolina

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