Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools elementary prinicipals' perceptions of their changing role

Sheila D Woodruff, Tennessee State University


A study was conducted to compare the perceptions of Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools elementary principals regarding their changing role. There were 73 principals in the targeted population for this investigation. The instrument, The Changing Role of the Elementary Principal: A Survey of MNPS Principals contained 42 items. It was a Likert scale questionnaire, which was a modified replication of The Changing Role of the Principal , a survey conducted with school administrators in Washington State. A review of the literature suggests a change in the role of the principal with additional responsibilities. It is further suggested these changes are affecting principals' ability to effectively do the job. The investigation was organized around four Null Hypotheses. The statistical procedure, chi square, was used to treat data so that study research questions and hypotheses could be answered and tested or both. The four Null Hypotheses were soundly rejected at the .05 level of significance. Results suggested principals perceive their role has changed in the last 5 years. They indicated meeting the needs of an increasingly diverse student population, marketing and public relations, increased interactions with parents, and the program needs of special education students as some of the major changes in their role. However, findings indicated a significant difference in the responses of male and female elementary principals' perceptions regarding the positive impact of decentralized decision-making. Female principals agreed that decentralized decision making has had a positive impact on the school, has required them to reprioritize their time, and has garnered support from the teaching staff. Females agreed that there seems to be an increased number of students requiring special education services. They also agreed that increased parent interest and expectations have benefited their schools. Male principals agreed that emphasizing standardized tests takes a disproportionate amount of time. Building heads whose school enrollment was above 600 agreed that they meet with more parents now who are considering school choices. Principals with a Master's +30 or Ed.S. and those with a Doctorate agreed that administrative requirements for special education have required a disproportionate amount of time.

Subject Area

School administration

Recommended Citation

Sheila D Woodruff, "Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools elementary prinicipals' perceptions of their changing role" (2004). ETD Collection for Tennessee State University. Paper AAI3141942.