Date of Award

Fall 12-5-2023

Degree Type


Degree Name

EdD Education Leadership, Management and Policy


Education Leadership, Management and Policy


Eloise Marks-Stewart, EdD

Committee Member

David Reid, PhD

Committee Member

Julieanne K. Kotcho, EdD

Committee Member

Reina Martinez, EdD


Teacher evaluation models, Federal education policies, Urban public school district, New Jersey, AchieveNJ, Policy implementation


The study explores the implementation of teacher evaluation models and federal education policies, particularly AchieveNJ, in an urban public school district in New Jersey. It focuses on principals' experiences and perceptions, uncovering their challenges and thoughts on the policy's effectiveness in enhancing teacher performance and student learning outcomes. The research delves into the complexities and uncertainties principals face, examining how these align with their leadership practices and impact policy execution. It also investigates the contextual factors influencing AchieveNJ's execution and effectiveness, providing insights for future policy formulation and practical implementation.

A key aspect of the study is its use of Festinger's Cognitive Dissonance Theory to analyze principals' psychological responses when their beliefs conflict with policy requirements. This offers a nuanced understanding of their decision-making processes. The study's significance lies in its detailed examination of the challenges in implementing teacher evaluation models and education policies in urban districts, contributing valuable insights for developing effective educational policies and strategies.