Year of Award


Document Type


Degree Type

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Degree Name

Educational Leadership

Department or School/College

School of Education

Committee Chair

John Matt

Commitee Members

William McCaw, Patricia Kero, Frances O'Reilly, Darrell Stolle


Hard to staff schools, Principal, Retention, Support, Teacher


University of Montana


This dissertation examines the relationship between principal support and retention of teachers in hard to staff schools. The purpose of this study was to, (a) to determine the relationship between teacher retention and principal support, (b) to examine the perception of support between teachers and principals and how these perceptions affect teacher retention in hard to staff schools, and (c) to discover if there is a correlation between the principal's supports and teacher retention. Within these school environments, the participants were both administrators and teachers who are employed in the sample schools. Findings in this study verified information found within the literature review and were consistent with prior research and studies indicating that support of teachers have a large impact on teacher retention in hard to staff schools. Teachers that participated in this study provided insight as to which forms of support they valued most from their principals. The recommendations that are provided are intended to be a guide for administrators working in hard to staff schools to improve their programs so that they face less teacher attrition in hard to staff schools. The recommendations are also intended to encourage leaders to look more closely at their programs and their own styles of leadership and support as to improve their communication and support of their teachers in these hard to staff schools. Specific recommendations are made for administrators, institutions, teachers, working in hard to staff schools. As well as researchers interested in pursuing more information in this area of research.



© Copyright 2012 Amy Lee Hughes