Date of Award


Document Type

Restricted Access Thesis

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Learning, Leadership, and Community


Department of Educational Leadership, Learning, and Curriculum

Committee Chair

Kathleen C. McCabe

Committee Member

Marianne True

Committee Member

Cheryl Lynn Davis


This mixed-methods study examined the relationship between leadership behaviors and successful second-order change, in the case of a once traditional elementary school in the midwestern United States that transformed beyond the industrial-age design into a learning model that fosters the skills essential to success in the 21st century. This descriptive case study was anchored in the theoretical constructs of transformational leadership (Burns, 1978; Bass, 1985), transformational educational leadership (Leithwood & Jantzi, 2000; Leithwood, Jantzi, & Fernandez, 1994), and second-order change (Watzlawick, Weakland, & Fisch, 1974). Nine faculty members from Webster Elementary School completed Leithwood’s Educational Leadership Survey; descriptive statistical methods were used to analyze survey data. Three survey respondents also participated in a follow-up focus group discussion based on survey results. Two school administrators participated in semistructured interviews; interview questions were guided by data collected during the focus group discussion and grounded in the results of the teacher survey.



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