Secondary Education Principals/Superintendents
To investigate the relationship between administrators' style of leadership
and their levels of perceived stress.
The population consisted of secondary schools, with at least 150
students, from the Association of Christian Schools International Membership Directory
in the mid-america region (N=424). Thirty were randomly selected and 25 participated. In
addition to the LPI, these school principals completed the Maslach Burnout Inventory
(Maslach & Jackson, 1986), and provided demographic data. Teachers within each school
completed the LPI-Observer (N=195).
The typical principal was between 31 and 50 years of age (88%), male (96%), held a
master's degree (65%), and had 4-10 years of administrative experience (60%). Two-thirds
of the schools had between 200-400 students and two-thirds of the principals had been at
these schools 4-10 years.
These principals' LPI-Self scores were similar to the LPI normative
sample, except for being higher in Inspiring. Compared to the normative sample, the
teachers' LPI-Observer scores for these principals were significantly higher on Inspiring
and Modeling. "The participating principals in this study, as reflected in self and others'
ratings, did not reveal many strong or significant tendencies toward transformational
For principals on the stress instrument, Encouraging and Challenging were
positively correlated with personal accomplishment and Encouraging was negatively
correlated with depersonalization. No significant correlations were found between stress
and the principals' leadership practices as perceived by teachers (LPI-Observers).
LPI-Self scores were unrelated to age, years of experience, tenure at school,
educational level (except for a positive relationship with Enabling), or school size (except
for a positive relationship with Modeling). Only six of 30 correlations between LPIObserver
scores and demographic characteristics were significant: Younger administrators
were seen as Challenging, Inspiring, and Enabling more than their older counterparts; more
experienced principals were seen as less Inspiring and Enabling than less experienced
principals; and administrators in larger schools were lower in Enabling.