Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Joe Ann Hinrichs


There was a problem regarding students' antisocial behavior in a small rural school district in Washington State. Public data within the district indicated increasing incidents of students' antisocial behaviors. However, perceptions of school leaders regarding this problem were not known. As a result, there was a need to gain an understanding about school leaders' perceptions of students' antisocial behaviors in order to suggest potential solutions to reduce students' antisocial behaviors, as these perceptions are closely associated with their intent to address the problem. Bandura's theory of self-regulation provided the conceptual framework for collecting and analyzing data. Using an instrumental case study, the research questions explored school leaders' experiences in working with students who failed to manage their behavior and who exhibited antisocial behavior. Semi structured interviews were conducted with 13 school leaders in the district, and an iterative, inductive process of data collection, open coding, and thematic analysis was used. The themes that emerged from analysis of the data indicated a gap in the school leaders' practice regarding participation in ongoing, job-embedded professional development and an absence of a systematic school-wide positive behavior support approach to prevention and intervention. The findings indicated the need for professional development training to address these issues related to school leaders' practice. The suggested training could create positive social change by reducing students' antisocial behaviors, thus leading to an improvement in academic achievement. The recommended job-embedded professional development training resulting from exploring school leaders' perceptions can increase the capacity of the school leaders to manage students' antisocial behaviors.