Principals’ Perceptions About a New System of District Core Values

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D)


Educational Administration

Date of Award

Fall 2020


This qualitative case study sought to examine the perceptions of school administrators about a new system of district core values, their efforts to incorporate such system into their respective schools, and the impacts of this incorporation. This phenomenon was analyzed in the context of a suburban school district located in southeast Texas. Using an embedded case study design (Yin, 2009; Yin 2014), school administrators provided information and explored their views regarding a new system of district core values, the incorporation of such core values within the walls of their unique school campuses and with their unique campus core values, and the impacts of such incorporation. As discussed in the literature review, core values are defined in multiple ways by different authors whose focus include, among other definitions: people organizations, institutional bedrocks, behavioral guidelines, organizational compasses, trust builders, and common beliefs. Despite these different perspectives, a common denominator is the existence of core values to significantly impact the work attitudes and job performance in an organization. Under this premise and due to changes in hierarchical positions and organizational structure, institutions may adopt new visions that may affect the mission and the core values of the organization. These changes bring within a set of challenges and opportunities for the entities that are part of the organization. In correlation with this idea, the purpose of the data-gathering artifacts in this study was to collect information to determine participants’ perceptions in regards the new system of district core values, its integration with unique campus core values, and the impacts of this integration. For this study, a total of four campus principals from elementary school, middle school, and high school were selected to participate. The researcher used face-to-face, open-ended-questions interviews, participant observations, and direct observations as the primary tools to collect and triangulate the data. Participants were school principals of a school district, located in southeast Texas, who meet the following criteria: (a) they held a Principal’s certificate approved by the Texas Education Agency (TEA), (b) they served as school administrators since 2017 or before the adoption of the new system of district core values, and (c) they were the current principal at their campus. There were modifications to some of the data gathering instruments due to the global pandemic identified as Coronavirus or Covid 19. These modifications were filed and approved by the Texas A&M Institutional Review Board. After the researcher analyzed the data gathered, four main themes were developed to represent the sentiment transmitted in the participants’ responses: 1) A common language, 2) Collaborative effort, 3) The inner circle within a circle, 4) Action always ignites reaction. These main themes produced a variety of subthemes that provided a better explanation to the findings in this study. Implications of findings, implications for the practice, and recommendations for future studies are discussed in the last chapter of this work.


Ava Muñoz

Subject Categories

Education | Educational Administration and Supervision