Date of Submission

Spring 6-9-2017

Document Type



Doctor of Education



OIP Defense Chair

Elan Paulson


Code of Conduct, School Principal, Assistant Superintendent, Distributed Leadership, Change Improvement Plan, Student Behaviour, Organizational Theory, Restorative Practice.


In 2004, the province of British Columbia introduced the Safe, Caring and Orderly Schools guide to provide the vision toward which all schools and Boards in the province must continually strive (BCEd., 2008a). As a leading document, this guide provided provincial standards for codes of conduct while also identifying attributes of safe, caring and orderly schools. As stated in the guide’s introduction, the challenge is for schools, districts and communities to develop or adopt strategies and programs that will work for them (BCEd., 2008a). Acknowledging that local solutions to address local problems are required, this Organizational Improvement Plan (OIP) explores how K-12 public school principals can distribute leadership in the creation and implementation of a school code of conduct to effect positive change in reducing students’ harmful verbal and physical behaviour in order to make their schools safe, caring and inclusive. The purpose of this OIP is to provide school district leaders and school-based principals in Dogwood Grove Public Schools (DGPS) with a plan for organizational change that utilizes the school code of conduct as the vehicle for addressing inappropriate student verbal and physical behaviour school-wide. This OIP also incorporates Distributed Leadership (DL) as a key leadership practice for district leaders and school-based principals to employ while identifying the potential it has for promoting collaboration and building leadership capacity in principals and their staff. This OIP focuses on directly educating students regarding the desired behaviours, emphasizing preventative possibilities in practice and response, while also stressing the importance of restorative solutions to redress harm. This OIP concludes with a series of recommendations which district leaders and school principals can utilize as they work to distribute leadership in the co-creation and implementation of their school code of conduct. If implemented, this OIP is anticipated to effect positive change in increasing socially responsible behaviour thereby making schools more safe, caring and inclusive.