Examination of Western New York State public school leader knowledge, beliefs, and perception of district beliefs concerning English language learners
Arroyo, Andres Rafael
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This dissertation examined the degree to which Western New York State school leader knowledge, beliefs, and perceptions of their school district's beliefs of concerning English language learners (ELLs), together, as a single dependent construct, manifested significant differences within, between, and across a number of defined independent variables. Quantitative data was statistically analyzed (SPSS) from respondent answers to an online generated questionnaire based on the New York State Education Department's LEP/ELL Program Evaluation Toolkit instrument (PET) and an Internal Control Index (ICI) construct to measure the Locus of Control of participating school leaders (Lefcourt, 1983). The extrapolated PET Toolkit data evidenced the degree of school leader knowledge, perceptions of both self and district involvement, and beliefs regarding ELL populations; and the embedded Locus of Control construct psychometric measured the degree to which respondents felt their decision making to be either prescribed (+internal locus) or within their purview (+external). A new English Language Learner School Leadership Model based on Villarreal (1999) and Suttmiller & González (2003) was used as theoretical framework for both methodology and critical examination of the collected data. Findings verified significant statistical differences between school leader ELL knowledge, perception, involvement, sociocultural understanding, frequency in which professional development is provided, ability to speak a language other than English, and communication with parents. Based on the findings, the study discusses implications for further research regarding school leadership for English Language Learners and emphasizes a need for heightened ELL professional development for public school administrators working with this student demographic.