Page 21 - Volume 6 - Issue 1 - DBU Journal for K-12 Educational Leadership

Journal of K-12 Educational Research 19 BEHAVIORS OF CHRISTIAN SCHOOL LEADERS THAT ARE PERCEIVED AS SUPPORTIVE BY TEACHERS OF MULTIPLE GENERATIONS Andrea Chevalier, EdD Journal of K-12 Educational Research 2022, VOL. 6, ISSUE 1 Introduction Teachers must have an engaging job and a work environment that fosters overall well-being since they spend so much time at work. Because of this, it is vitally important that schools have healthy and thriving school cultures and classrooms (Swaner & Ferguson, 2020, para. 7). Psychologists have also found that when the work environment includes praise and recognition, teachers’ productivity, morale, engagement, and motivation tend to be higher while turnover rates tend to be lower (Abrams & Frank, 2014, p. 90). Creating this type of workplace at Christian schools is mainly the task of Christian school leaders since they are ultimately responsible for their school’s culture and climate. Faculty and staff are feeling more vulnerable during this post COVID-19 time period, so leaders need to ensure that everyone in their schools feels empowered to do the job they need to be doing every day (Swaner & Ferguson, 2020, para. 7). This begins by realizing that there are three different generations of employees working at schools (Abrams & Frank, 2014, p. 6). Teacher expectations of what a supportive workplace looks and feels like are different for each generation of employees (Abrams & Frank, 2014, p. 90). Supportive behaviors cannot be a one-size fits all solution if the Christian school leaders want to reach each generation represented in their faculties. Purpose of the Study The purpose of the current study was to discover what each generation of teachers perceived as supportive behaviors so that Christian school leaders could use them as they work with their teachers. This is important because in the foreseeable future there will be fewer available teachers who are qualified to teach at Christian schools since fewer people are becoming Christ-followers (Barna Group and Association of Christian Schools International, 2017, p. 23). Teachers who feel supported and enabled to make a difference in the lives of their students are less likely to leave their current position (Hauserman & Stick, 2013, p. 195). Because of this, Christian school leaders will need to support teachers of all generations who are currently teaching at their schools. It is also important to support and keep qualified teachers in their positions as this leads to improved classroom performance and organizational commitment by teachers as well as higher academic achievement by students (Stipek, 2012, p. 602). Literature Review Christian schools started when groups, such as the Mennonites, Puritans, and Quakers, came to America during the 1600s and decided to form their own schools to perpetuate Christianity (Fremont, n.d., paras. 20-22). By the end of the 1800s, Christian schools had practically disappeared as many parents put their children in local public schools that taught Christian values (Association of Christian Schools [ACSI], n.d., para. 20). However, during the 1950s-1960s,