Teacher Perceptions of Principal Support and Teacher Self-Efficacy

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Kuslis, Britany
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Teacher perceptions of their principal are related to how they view their profession and their own self-efficacy. A mixed-methods, convergent parallel design including three multiple linear regression procedures and qualitative analyses, was used to study these factors. Participants included 125 teachers from the four regions of the United States. Regression analyses included the variables of teachers’ years of education experience, number of years working with current principal (five years or fewer, six years or more), and four areas of principal support to predict three subscales of teacher self-efficacy. Qualitative data from four open-ended items addressed teachers’ perceptions of principal support. A stepwise multiple linear regression indicated that instrumental support, years working with current principal, emotional support, and number of years teaching, predicted self-efficacy for instructional strategy, explaining 17.2% of the variance. Years working with their current principal and instrumental support explained 12.1% of the variance in self-efficacy for classroom management. Years working with current principal and instrumental support predicted self-efficacy for student engagement, explaining 13.1% of the variance. Classroom management and student engagement were positively related to the length of time a teacher worked with a particular principal. Teacher perspectives of these constructs revealed that teacher self-efficacy is significantly influenced by the assistance teachers receive from their principals in terms of resources, constructive feedback, and emotional support.
First, I would like to thank Mrs. Debra Hansen, my former Assistant Principal who suggested I take on a doctoral program to pursue a professional challenge. Without her suggestion I would not have considered taking on something of this magnitude. I would also like to thank my fellow cohort members. We went through this experience during such a trying few years. Thank you for walking beside me during this program, it has been life-altering. I am lucky to have made such genuine friends through this experience. Thank you, to my twin sister, Courtney. You were always there to discuss an idea, support a personal situation or provide some motivation and/or accountability on especially difficult days. To Dr. Marcia Delcourt, my primary advisor, words cannot express how your time, mentorship, friendship, patience, and kindness have served as a beacon of hope throughout this process. You were an ever-present fixture for me. We worked through a pandemic, a deployment, the birth of a child and so many other life-changing events. Thank you for your commitment to my growth and development and for your emotional and intellectual support during such a unique time in our lives. I truly could not have done this without you! Finally, I would like to thank my husband, Mykal. We have done so many things together, as a team, and this program was no different. Being able to experience this together, and find a way to persevere through a pandemic, a deployment, the birth of a child, various jobchanges/promotions was trying at times but, we persevered. I could not imagine taking on life’s challenges with anyone else. Thank you for your unwavering support and encouragement, for your patience with SPSS and for always believing in me, even when I did not believe in myself.