Jennifer Clayton

Jennifer Clayton
Associate Professor, Educational Administration
(757) 269-2203

Jennifer K. Clayton is an Associate Professor of Educational Leadership and Administration and director of the Educational Leadership and Administration programs.

Dr. Clayton's research on leadership development, the educational administration internship, and professional learning for school leaders has appeared in over 40 publications and more than 50 presentations to school districts and research conferences. Dr. Clayton has been nominated for several teaching awards at GW, including the Bender Teaching Award during the 2017-2018 academic year and previously the Honey Nashman Spark-A-Life award. She teaches courses to doctoral and graduate students in school leadership, support and development of teachers, and writing/research.

Prior to her work in higher education, Dr. Clayton served as a Social Studies teacher and in administrative roles in several school districts around the country. Dr. Clayton holds a PhD and EdS in Educational Leadership from Old Dominion University, MA in Educational Administration from Rutgers University, and BA in History, with minors in Secondary Education and Sociology from James Madison University.


Clayton, J., Sanzo. K, & Myran, S. (2013). Understanding mentoring as leadership development: Perspectives of district administrators and aspiring leaders. Journal of Research on Leadership Education, 8(1).

Clayton, J., & Myran, S. (2013). Content and context of the administrative internship: How mentoring and sustained activities impact preparation. Mentoring & Tutoring: Partnership in Learning, 21(1).

Thessin, R., & Clayton, J. (2013). Perspectives of school leaders on the administrative Internship. Journal of Educational Administration, 51(6), 790-81.

In the News

Dr. Beth Tuckwiller, Dr. Olga Price (Associate Professor in Prevention and Community Health in the Milken Institute School of Public Health; Director, Center for Health and Health Care in Schools), and Dr. Jennifer Clayton are recipients of the Cross Disciplinary Research Fund (CDRF) award to support their research project: "A Mixed Methods Exploration of School-Based Wellbeing in the U.S."

Dr. Rebecca Thessin, Dr. Jennifer Clayton, and GSEHD alumna Dr. Kim Jamison (Ed.D., Educational Administration) recently published an article in the Journal of Research on Leadership Education entitled, “Profiles of the Administrative Internship: The Mentor/Intern Partnership in Facilitating Leadership Experiences.”

Dr. Rebecca Thessin and Dr. Jennifer Clayton presented a paper entitled “A Exploration of a New Superintendent’s Transition Team as a Facilitator of Organizational Socialization of Senior District Administrators” at the University Council of Educational Administration conference in Denver, Colorado on November 16, 2017. Dr. Thessin also organized and participated in a Critical Conversation with researchers and practitioners in a session entitled, “Supporting Principals’ Instructional Leadership Development from Central Office: The Current and Future Role of the Principal Supervisor” at this conference.

Dr. Jennifer Clayton and Dr. Rebecca Thessin recently published a paper in Mentoring and Tutoring: Partnership in Learning entitled Voices of Educational Administration Internship Mentors.

GSEHD alumna Arronza LaBatt (Ed.D., educational administration and policy studies) is a finalist for the AERA Leadership for School Improvement Special Interest Group (LSI SIG) 2016 Dissertation of the Year Award for Balancing the Role of the Principalship: Creating and Sustaining Equity and Excellence in an Accountability World. Dr. Jennifer Clayton was her dissertation chair. Dr. LaBatt will be presenting her work at the AERA Conference in San Antonio, TX.