Date of Award
EdD Education Leadership, Management and Policy
Education Leadership, Management and Policy
Daniel Gutmore, Ph.D.
Richard Blissett, Ph.D.
John Decker, Ed.D.
principal perceptions, active shooter, armed personnel, school violence, mass shootings, and District Factor Group (DFG)
In the wake of increased shootings in schools, safety concerns are in the forefront of school administrators’ concerns. This study is a replication of a dissertation published in 2016 as well as some components of a research study published in 2014. The 2014 study examined elementary principals in an urban public-school district in Paterson, New Jersey, within District Factor Group (A), whereas the 2016 study examined suburban public-school districts in New Jersey’s District Factor Group (GH) with a median household salary ranging between $86,000 and $105,000. An interview study was utilized for this qualitative research design to assist in determining the perceptions of principals regarding armed personnel being operationalized in a specific New Jersey public school district factor group as well as their perceptions of police tactical response capabilities relevant to school shootings. This current study examined public school districts within affluent communities that possess a median household salary ranging between $88,000 and $149,000, in which the socioeconomic status of these schools was identified by New Jersey District Factor Group (I). There were fourteen K-12 public school principals who were interviewed, and audio recorded to gather evidence of their perceptions regarding armed personnel being operationalized in a specific New Jersey public school district factor group as well as their perceptions of police tactical response capabilities relevant to school shootings in a learning institution. The responses of the interviews highlighted and confirmed the various consistent and predetermined themes that were applicable to this study. The outcome showed that eight out of fourteen principals representing elementary, middle, and high school level of leadership endorsed armed personnel in their school at a rate of 57%. Overall, in this deductive analysis and comparable to the previous studies in 2014 and 2016, the principals directed their answers to school safety by following safety policies and procedures, building trust through communication with their students and staff, conducting the appropriate drills in their school with all of their students, staff, and faculty, and ensuring the building is physically secured to ensure an environment that is conducive to learning.
Ames-Lopez, Adela, "The Influence of Active Shooter Incidents in K-12: Principals Perceptions of Armed Personnel and Tactical Police Capabilities in New Jersey District Factor Group (I) Public School Districts" (2020). Seton Hall University Dissertations and Theses (ETDs). 2824.