Exploring Principals' Perceptions regarding the Evolvement of School Violence and Teacher Victimization: A Qualitative Phenomenological Study

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D)


Educational Administration

Date of Award

Spring 2020


Violence in various urban public schools has increased throughout the last few decades. While school and district leaders have attempted to tackle this overarching problem, no documented record pertaining to research of significant change exists. Although teachers remain the individuals who most frequently witness the violent acts and behaviors of students before, during, and after the incidents and have participated in countless studies on the topic, researchers have refrained from focusing on a principals' perspective of the violence that may occur on his or her campus and whether such violence is perpetuated or increased by a high crime community violence area. In this study, the researcher examined principal response to the evolvement of school violence and teacher victimization in or around the school community through the lens of general strain theory. Principals observe various different types of student violence on a consistent basis and can contribute essential information to district leaders that can help relegate this issue. The data compiled in this qualitative phenomenological study revealed phenomena on the subject of student violence observed by 10 high school principals in a North Texas public school system located in a high-crime area whose schools range in population from 500 to 900 students. These principals have observed teacher and student behaviors that lead to verbal abuse and physical violence. The data were accumulated by interviewing participants about their experiences and perceptions of student violence. Furthermore, based on the outcome of the interviews, the data were analyzed for key significant themes that emerged. It is hoped that the findings in the research of this study will validate the need for district leadership to devise and implement prevention strategies and professional development opportunities that will lead to a decrease in violence among student/teacher populations.


Art Borgemenke

Subject Categories

Education | Educational Administration and Supervision