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A Study of Relationships among Teachers' Perceptions of Leadership Practices and Teachers' Perceptions of Teacher Efficacy
AuthorZuninio Jr., Bernard James
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ABSTRACT: A Study of Relationships among Teachers’ Perceptions of Leadership Practices and Teachers’ Perceptions of Teacher Efficacy. The purpose of the study was to determine if significant relationships existed among measures of elementary principals’ leadership practices and measures of teacher self-efficacy as perceived by rural elementary teachers. Teachers' sense of efficacy has been related to teacher performance and student achievement. Teachers who have a strong sense of efficacy tend to demonstrate greater effort, persist longer in working with students who have problems, and have greater success in reform initiatives. Consistently, principal leadership behaviors have been linked to teachers' sense of efficacy; however, the results of this study were not consistent with such research findings. Teachers’ perceptions of principals’ behaviors were not correlated with teachers’ efficacy. Specifically, based on the responses of 221 rural teachers, the five measures of the Leadership Practices Inventory (LPI) were not correlated to subscales of the Teacher Efficacy Scale (TES). It was posited that the lack of correlations could be associated with the relatively short tenure of the rural principals in the study; all principals had been in their current position less than three years at the time of the study. Grouping of teacher responses were established using selected demographic variables. The results of MANOVAs were mixed. Significant differences across groups were established for Number of Years Teaching and Teachers Level of Education. Teachers were asked to describe their involvement in decision-making in their schools. Their descriptions indicated that their involvement was primarily associated with participation in committee work and involvement in various building level teams. However, over one-half of the teachers indicated that they were only involved within their classrooms or that they were not involved in decision-making. Again, it was posited that these finding could be associated with the nature and character of small rural schools and with the relatively short tenure of the principals.