Secondary Education Principals/Superintendents
The purpose of this study was to explore if and how child care centers in
Oklahoma varied as a function of Star status, geographic region and program auspice.
Participants included 71 child care centers (83% response rate),
matched by geographic region and auspice. Approximately 39% were rural. Dependent
variables included structural aspects of child care environments, for example, licensed
capacity, enrollment, group size, teacher:child ratios, number of Master teachers and
teacher and director education, experience, and income. Process quality variables
included environmental quality, developmentally appropriate practices, teacher beliefs
about professional beliefs and practices, and director beliefs about leadership as well as
teachers’ beliefs about their director’s leadership. Directors and teachers completed the
LPI-Self and LPI-Observer respectively. Cronbach’s alpha scores for the LPI-Self were
.78 and for the LPI-Observer alpha scores were .98. The response rate on the LPI-Self
was 93% (N=66) and a total of 381 LPI-Observer were completed (62% response rate).
A correlation between the directors’ views of their leadership
practices with those from their staff was not found. Teachers rated directors as more
democratic when directors had more years experience at the center. However, there was
no relationship between teacher experience and director leadership. Directors of rural
One-Star centers described their leadership behaviors less democratically than urban
One-Star directors. However, this pattern was not repeated across the Two-Star and
accredited levels. All in all, the author concludes: "regarding director leadership, this
study raises more questions than it answers" (p. 151).