Document Type



Doctor of Education


Educational Practice

Date of Defense


Graduate Advisor

Laura M. Westhoff, Ph.D.


Marvin Berkowitz, Ph.D.

Shea Kerkhoff, Ph.D.

Kathleen T. Fink, Ph.D.


This dissertation explores the alignment between local school principals’ values and ideas about what should be taught in their public schools and the values of the local Yup’ik communities in which those principals serve. A review of scholarly literature served as a basis for identifying Yup’ik values and a survey which measured principals’ beliefs about the importance and priority of those values was used to collect a variety of data. Findings showed both differences and similarities between principals’ priorities and Yup’ik values and was clear that the similarities and differences were predominantly related to the number of years of a principal’s service rather than any other factor, including principal’s professional training. Future studies might focus on recruitment of administrators that are willing to stay long-term in rural Alaska by providing support and incentives to combat the hardships of rural Alaskan life, since longevity of principals’ tenure is key in terms of alignment to Yup’ik values, retention is vital, and on effective professional training to ensure administrators gain knowledge of Yup’ik culture.