Electronic Theses and Dissertations





Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Leadership and Policy Studies


Educational Leadership

Committee Chair

Reginald Leon Green

Committee Member

Louis Franceschini III

Committee Member

Karen Weddle-West

Committee Member

Beverly Cross


Policies and education reform measures have sought to improve education for decades. Some scholars support the notion that the instructional leadership role of the school leader makes a significant contribution to educational reform, student learning, and school improvement. The purpose of this study was to analyze instructional leadership practices in Reward-Performance, Reward-Progress, and Priority schools as determined by the Thirteen Core Competencies Framework and measured by select items on the Teaching, Empowering, Leading and Learning (TELL) Survey. This quantitative study examined teachers' perceptions of how school leaders used instructional leadership practices as determined by the Thirteen Core Competency Framework. The nine core competency areas addressed in the study were Visionary Leadership, Unity of Purpose, Instructional Leadership, Curriculum and Instruction, Professional Learning Communities, Organizational Management, Collaboration, Assessment, and Professional Development. The secondary analysis performed in this study involved integrating data from two data sources: 1) item-level responses retrieved from the spring 2013 TELL survey and 2) the school's current classification as Reward-Performance, Reward-Progress, and Priority by the Tennessee Department of Education. The item-level responses on the TELL survey were aligned with nine of the core competencies represented in the Thirteen Core Competency Framework. A total of 129 schools was selected for the study. The sample was representative of school districts across Tennessee. The data analysis revealed that the nine leadership competencies were not equally represented across the sample of schools classified as Rewaard-Performance, Reward-Progress and Priority. In addition, the nine leadership competencies varied both within and between the three types of schools. Between the types of institutions, teachers at the Reward-Performance schools tended to perceive their school's endorsement of the leadership competencies more positively than did teachers at either the Reward-Progress or the Priority schools. The data analysis also revealed that mean scores tended to be higher in the elementary schools than in the secondary schools. The results of this study indicate that the school leader's ability to use the Thirteen Core Competency Framework is critical to effective leadership. The findings from this study have the potential to inform school leaders, teacher leaders, and leadership training programs.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.