Date of Completion


Embargo Period



executive coaching; principal development; instructional leadership; “joint work;” embedded professional development; theories of action

Major Advisor

Anysia Mayer

Associate Advisor

Casey Cobb

Associate Advisor

Robert Villanova

Associate Advisor

Morgaen Donaldson

Field of Study

Educational Leadership (Ed.D.)


Doctor of Education

Open Access

Open Access


This case study examined how the Connecticut Association of Schools' (CAS) Executive Coaching program was implemented at five schools. The program was started to improve the instructional leadership capacity of principals via embedded, ongoing professional development. Semi-structured interviews were conducted in person and by telephone. Interview questions explored the effectiveness of the coaching program, as measured by the perceptions of coaches, principals, and other key school personnel (such as teachers and leadership team members). In addition, documents provided by executive coaches and principals were reviewed. This study found that the majority of sites reported changes in principals' leadership practices after engaging in "joint work" with an executive coach for at least two years, Furthermore, differences in implementation of the program at various sites were linked to individual coaches' philosophies about the purpose of coaching.