Date of Award


Access Restriction


Degree Name

Doctorate in Education



School or College

School of Education

First Advisor

Lauren Casella

Second Advisor

Brandi Odom Lucas

Third Advisor

John Sebastian


This study sought to understand the impact of a leader’s social justice orientation on their praxis of social justice. The study also sought to discover the successes and challenges associated with enacting social justice. Nine Catholic secondary school leaders in the California Archdiocese participated in the study. Semi-structured interviews and document analysis were used to understand how social justice orientation affects social justice praxis. The data analysis indicates that the social justice outcomes of a school site are greatly impacted by the school leader’s justice-orientation. Findings revealed that justice-orientation is dependent on two factors: the self-efficacy of the leader and the social justice impact of the leader’s actions. These two factors determine a leader’s position on the justice orientation continuum. The implications of these findings are discussed.