Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



College of Education and Human Services


Curriculum & Instruction/Literacy Studies

Committee Chair

Paul Chapman.


This study examined the leadership styles of the chief state school officers of the United States and the District of Columbia. The entire population of 51 chief state school officers was surveyed and a response rate of 60% was obtained. The study examined the relationship between the leadership style, select demographic variables, and the specific models of educational governance. The Leadership Orientation (Self) Instrument (Bolman & Deal, 1990) was used. The survey instrument is based on the Bolman and Deal (1984, 1991c, 2003) four-frame model, which includes the structural, human resource, political, and symbolic leadership frames. The predominant leadership style of the chief state school officer was a multi-frame leadership style (53.3%), followed by a paired-frame leadership style (23.3%) with the least used leadership style being a single-frame (10.0%). The number of chief state school officers using a multi-frame leadership style was statistically significant. Additionally, a statistically significant relationship was found between the use of the human resource frame and the highest degree earned. Finally, the study concluded that a significant relationship existed between the years of experience as a chief state school officer leadership in comparison to the leadership frame means and a multi-frame leadership style. It appeared that the longer an individual was a chief state school officer the more likely they were to utilize all four frames and to possess a multi-frame leadership style.