Date of Award


Degree Name

Leadership Studies


College of Education

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Dr. Louis Watts, Committee Chairperson

Second Advisor

Dr. Edna Meisel

Third Advisor

Dr. Thomas Hisiro

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Sue Hollandsworth


Since the late 1980s, standards for students and teachers began to be the focus of education, creating demands and pressures on school leaders to become more than managers of a school. This change of focus expanded to include principals and required school leaders to possess instructional leadership qualities beyond managerial skills. In 2010, the West Virginia Board of Education enacted the Standards of Professional Practice for West Virginia Superintendents, Principals and Teacher Leaders (WVBE Policy 5800) to guide West Virginia educational leaders toward instructional leadership. The purpose of this study was to gain West Virginia principals’ perceptions at all grade levels of the effectiveness of WVBE Policy 5800 as to whether the standards were successful in guiding effective instructional leadership. A researcher-developed survey was distributed electronically through the Qualtrix research platform to 678 West Virginia Principals. The survey was completed by 223 principals for a response rate of 33%. The findings of the study revealed that principals believe standards found in WVBE Policy 5800 were important in guiding instructional leadership. Specifically, the areas of climate/culture and interpersonal skills were viewed as most important by West Virginia Principals. Also, bureaucratic mandates and lack of parent involvement were considered substantial impediments in meeting standards found in WVBE Policy 5800. This study produced information that could be beneficial to practicing principals, future instructional leaders, and programs that prepare future educational leaders, but it is recommended this study be duplicated by other educational leaders outside of West Virginia to include standards guiding their instructional leadership.


School principals -- West Virginia.

Education and state.

School management and organization.