Date of Award

Summer 7-24-2020

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)



First Advisor

Dr. Shelly Fransen

Second Advisor

Dr. Sherry DeVore

Third Advisor

Dr. Brian Wilson


The Leader in Me is a school approach with a focus on socioemotional education adopted by over 3,000 schools across the globe (Soutter, 2018, p.8). As culture continues to change with technology and new social aspects, character education programs must continue to adapt as well to support student needs within schools (Rocco, 2018). This quantitative study was designed to identify differences in perceptions of Lighthouse Team members and Non-Lighthouse Team members about how the Leader in Me impacts student attendance, classroom discipline, and school culture. Surveys were sent to educators in 22 schools in southern Missouri who had implemented the Leader in Me for at least two years. Elicited feedback from elementary principals, counselors, and teachers regarding their perceptions of the Leader in Me model was gathered through this survey. The data were disaggregated to determine if differences existed between Lighthouse Team members and Non-Lighthouse Team members. Significant statistical differences between the two groups were not evident when examining how the paradigms affected the three areas of attendance, behavior, and culture. Most participants agreed the Leader in Me had a positive impact on student attendance, classroom discipline, and school culture; however, the Lighthouse team members had a greater understanding specific to the breakdown of the five paradigms of the Leader in Me creating change outcome, whereas the Non-Lighthouse team members saw the impact coming from more of a holistic view of Leader in Me program. The results of this study can provide support for principals when implementing the Leader in Me program to ensure all stakeholders have a deep level of understanding to sustain the system with the expected outcomes.


Copyright 2020