The Relationship Between Transformational Leadership, School Climate, Student Conduct, and Student Attendance in Urban Schools in New Jersey

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The purpose of this quantitative study was to determine if there is a relationship between transformational leadership style, school climate, student conduct, and student attendance in urban elementary schools. Survey data were collected from a purposeful sample of elementary school principals and a convenience sample of their staff members in an urban school district in Northern New Jersey. In 2015–2018, 20 urban schools in northern New Jersey considered “failing schools” were awarded a School Improvement Grant (SIG), supported by the Federal Department of Education (Federal DOE) through the New Jersey Department of Education. With this funding, the urban school district undertook the challenge of the turnaround school model between 2015–2018, which resulted in positive change in student conduct, student attendance, and the school’s climate because of incorporating a transformational leader. This dissertation examines if there are any positive outcomes in student conduct, attendance, and the climate of an urban school when including a transformational leader. The Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ-5X) was used to measure the degree to which a principal displays the factors of a transformational leader based on teacher perceptions, and the principals used it to self-assess. The New Jersey Culture and Climate (NJCCS) survey was used to measure teacher perceptions of school climate, and interviews were conducted to gain insight into staff perceptions of the qualities of a transformational leader. This study also investigated if a relationship exists between transformational leadership and a school climate. The study surveyed 20 urban schools located in a large urban district in New Jersey. Principals’ leadership styles were determined from the MLQ-5X, and school climate was determined from the school district’s (NJCCS) reported number of Office Conduct Reports (OCR) and student attendance data incidents recorded in the district’s data system.

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  • 03/27/2024
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