Date of Award

8-2013

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

Executive Leadership

Abstract

This dissertation addressed hidden curriculum and the impact it has on principals in five Title I middle schools. Currently, there is a gap in the research exploring principal perspectives of hidden curriculum. The research objective was to investigate how principal perspectives of hidden curriculum affect Title I middle schools and enable school improvement. In this study, principals were interviewed regarding their perspectives on curriculum, leadership, discipline, testing, professional development, collaboration, expertise and perspectives about teachers and students in their classrooms and schools. This was a qualitative study and the data was analyzed for codes and themes of hidden curriculum. Four themes developed based upon principal interviews. They were the principal, students, resources and the teacher. There were no differences in the theme of principal. However, differences between principals of high performing schools and low performing schools were noted in the themes of students, resources and the teacher. The findings of this study suggest that hidden curriculum is currently functioning to a high degree in the study schools. Principals must have an open dialogue with staff about hidden curriculum, evaluate the findings, and develop school goals to ensure students meet successful educational outcomes. Dialogue between principals and staff could assist principals in creating a plan for solving the daily dilemmas of leading Title I school communities.

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