The beliefs and practices of disciplinary alternative education program leadership teams: A student-centered approach?




Weiland, Christine A.

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The purpose of this dissertation was to explore the beliefs and practices of Disciplinary Alternative Education Program leadership teams to determine if and how they use care as they strive to meet the academic and behavioral needs of at-risk students. This instrumental, multiple case study explored the following questions: a) What are the shared belief(s) (if any) about DAEP leadership of DAEP school leadership teams? b) Based on those beliefs, how do the administrators implement practices of care that create a school environment that supports at-risk students? c) Among team members, who emerges as the "leader" of care and how does that person influence and/or guide the team in its efforts to create a caring environment for their at-risk students? Using the conceptual framework of caring leadership practices, five DAEP school leaders who have created effective DAEP programs and who support a student-centered focus were studied through interview and observation. A description of a) the shared values and beliefs of these five school leaders, b) the distributed leadership model utilized, and c) the model of caring leadership developed based on these findings is provided in detail. Implications for future policy, practice, and research are made at the close of this dissertation.


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alternative schools, care, caring leadership, discipline, leadership



Educational Leadership and Policy Studies