New principals in the COVID corridor: an exploratory case study

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3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: This paper aims to highlight how a group of novice principals in Connecticut and New York used relational, dispositional and situational factors to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. The study aims to support new principals and educational leaders. Design/methodology/approach: Using Mutch's (2015) dispositional, relational and situational framework to guide the inquiry, this paper uses qualitative methods and interviewing in particular to explore the questions of interest. Six novice principals were each interviewed over the 2020–2021 school year, each interview lasting approximately forty-five minutes. Data were analyzed thematically using both deductive coding techniques and cross comparative analysis. Findings: Findings show that novice principals tended to rely on dispositional factors to respond to the crisis. Additionally, novice principals reported limited responses to the situational factors of the crisis due to restricted access and guidance from the district leadership. Research limitations/implications: Due to the small sample size and methodological approach, it may be inappropriate to generalize the findings across all novice principals in all settings. Further research in additional settings and larger samples are encouraged to support the proposed findings. Practical implications: This paper has several implications for districts and leadership preparation programs. Among these is the need for leadership preparation programs to adjust their curricula to train new principals properly. Originality/value: This work fills a gap in the research regarding how new principals respond to a crisis. It also provides insights into practice and possible means to enhance the growing population of new principals entering the educational leadership workforce.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Educational Administration
Volume61
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2 Jan 2023

Keywords

  • Crisis management
  • Educational administration
  • Urban areas

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