Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Black males in K-12 school systems across the nation continue to face formidable challenges such as low graduation rates, overrepresentation in special education, high out-of-school suspension rates, and underperformance in the classroom (Bryan, 2020; Grace & Nelson, 2019; Johnson & Bryan, 2017; Powell, 2018). Despite decades of research devoted to addressing the educational and social injustices Black males face, many scholars contend that such attention has resulted in minimal change, and a revised narrative for managing the state of Black males is needed (Adedoyin et al., 2019; Carter, 2019; Johnson & Bryan, 2017).
Some scholars have insisted that the academic outcomes among racial groups can be addressed through social justice leadership (Ezzani, 2020; Gullo & Beachum, 2019; Ogden, 2017; Theoharis, 2009). Additionally, they contend that social justice leadership of the principal is critical in developing equitable educational opportunities for diverse students (Beachum & Gullo, 2020; Ezzani, 2020; Grogan, 2017; Theoharis, 2009).
This quantitative study was to investigate how the level at which principals engage in social justice leadership behaviors is related to Black male academic achievement. Consequently, the study relied on Ajzen’s (1991) Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) which postulates that intentions to perform various behaviors are subjected to the attitude toward the behavior, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control.
Four research questions guided this study. They were:
1. What is the relationship between the level at which principals engage in school-specific social justice leadership behaviors and Black male Algebra and English 1 EOC performance?
2. What is the relationship between the level at which principals engage in community-minded social justice leadership behaviors and Black male Algebra and English 1 EOC performance?
3. What is the relationship between the level at which principals engage in self-focused social justice leadership behaviors and Black male Algebra and English 1 EOC performance?
4. Can overall social justice leadership behaviors of school principals (school-specific, community-minded, and self-focused) predict Black male Algebra and English 1 EOC performance?
The implications for research and practice are that the results of this study provide educational leaders and policymakers with a lens through which strategies could be created to break the cycle of educational racism faced by Black males and students of color. In so doing, challenges related to low graduation rates, overrepresentation in special education, high out-of-school suspension rates, and underperformance in the classroom will be easier to overcome
Patricia Hoffman -Miller
Prairie View A&M University
Rights© 2021 Prairie View A & M University
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
Date of Digitization
John B Coleman Library
City of Publication
Gibson, B. L. (2021). An Investigation Of Principals’ Social Justice Leadership And Black Male Academic Achievement. Retrieved from https://digitalcommons.pvamu.edu/pvamu-dissertations/7