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A Phenomenological Study of High School Assistant Principals who Supervise Special Education

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Date Issued:
2019
Abstract/Description:
This phenomenological study examined the lived experiences of high school assistant principals who lead the Exceptional Student Education (ESE) departments at their respective schools. The role of the school leader is critical and complex. Second to only the classroom teachers, school leaders have the ability to shape the school wide attitude and vision for students with disabilities. Knowing that in the past 30 years, the number of students with disabilities has nearly doubled in size, the expertise of school leaders in special education must also increase. Research on the experiences of high school administrators who serve students with intellectual disabilities and how their experiences and beliefs shape opportunities for students is limited. In addition, there is limited research regarding the prevalence of students with intellectual disabilities and their participation in vocational education and independent skills instruction to support independent functioning and future employment. This study used a phenomenological approach to examine the experiences and beliefs of high school assistant principals who supervise the ESE department at their school. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with seven participants (N=7). Through thematic analysis, six major themes and 21 subthemes emerged. The six major themes were: (a) compliance of special education; (b) administrators' role in faculty/staff supervision; (c) inclusion of students with disabilities in opportunities with their non-disabled peers; (d) lack of leadership preparation; (e) meeting student needs; (f) preparing students for life after school. This study concluded with a thorough examination of each of the major themes and subthemes, and provided implications for leadership development, induction programs for special education leaders, and best practices for serving students with intellectual disabilities.
Title: A Phenomenological Study of High School Assistant Principals who Supervise Special Education.
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Name(s): Vacchio, Erin, Author
Martin, Suzanne, Committee Chair
Vasquez, Trey, Committee Member
Jahani, Shiva, Committee Member
Helton, Julie, Committee Member
University of Central Florida, Degree Grantor
Type of Resource: text
Date Issued: 2019
Publisher: University of Central Florida
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: This phenomenological study examined the lived experiences of high school assistant principals who lead the Exceptional Student Education (ESE) departments at their respective schools. The role of the school leader is critical and complex. Second to only the classroom teachers, school leaders have the ability to shape the school wide attitude and vision for students with disabilities. Knowing that in the past 30 years, the number of students with disabilities has nearly doubled in size, the expertise of school leaders in special education must also increase. Research on the experiences of high school administrators who serve students with intellectual disabilities and how their experiences and beliefs shape opportunities for students is limited. In addition, there is limited research regarding the prevalence of students with intellectual disabilities and their participation in vocational education and independent skills instruction to support independent functioning and future employment. This study used a phenomenological approach to examine the experiences and beliefs of high school assistant principals who supervise the ESE department at their school. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with seven participants (N=7). Through thematic analysis, six major themes and 21 subthemes emerged. The six major themes were: (a) compliance of special education; (b) administrators' role in faculty/staff supervision; (c) inclusion of students with disabilities in opportunities with their non-disabled peers; (d) lack of leadership preparation; (e) meeting student needs; (f) preparing students for life after school. This study concluded with a thorough examination of each of the major themes and subthemes, and provided implications for leadership development, induction programs for special education leaders, and best practices for serving students with intellectual disabilities.
Identifier: CFE0007739 (IID), ucf:52452 (fedora)
Note(s): 2019-08-01
Ed.D.
Community Innovation and Education, Learning Sciences and Educational Research
Doctoral
This record was generated from author submitted information.
Subject(s): School Leadership -- Intellectual Disabilities -- Assistant Principals -- Vocational Education -- Special Education -- Social Skills Instruction -- Independent Skills
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/ucf/fd/CFE0007739
Restrictions on Access: public 2019-08-15
Host Institution: UCF

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