Leadership Factors that Matter, Promoting Implementation of Common Core Standards

The purpose of the study was to find out how leadership roles as perceived by teachers can positively or negatively impact the implementation of Common Core State Standards. Specifically how do teachers in one elementary school perceive the role and functions of principals as educational reform (CCSS) leaders and what conditions support or inhibit teacher implementation of CCSS in one elementary school? The review of literature focused on leadership roles, styles and functions; CCSS and implications for leadership during implementation; and teachers’ expectations of the role their site principal plays in implementing current educational reform (CCSS). Teacher participants completed a survey, answering closed and open-ended questions. The data was analyzed and conclusions drawn. Findings suggest most teachers believe the role and function of the principal, as an educational reform leader, is a shared role, working with staff in developing a systematic and school wide focus on learning, and creating a mission statement. Teacher participants strongly believe it is also the role of the principal to provide time for teachers to work/develop lessons to implement CCSS in their workweek as well as providing staff development and creating systems of support and shared leadership. Further studies in larger populations, varying districts and states, working in the area of Common Core State Standards implementation is needed. The findings from this and other such studies could possibly provide principals, districts, and stakeholders with a best practices approach, and could further assist educational reform leaders with professional development to meet the needs for implementing educational reform.