Medium 9781475825831

Jspr Vol 36-N2

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The Journal of School Public Relations is a quarterly publication providing research, analysis, case studies and descriptions of best practices in six critical areas of school administration: public relations, school and community relations, community education, communication, conflict management/resolution, and human resources management. Practitioners, policymakers, consultants and professors rely on the Journal for cutting-edge ideas and current knowledge. Articles are a blend of research and practice addressing contemporary issues ranging from passing bond referenda to building support for school programs to integrating modern information.

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Notes from the Editor

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Notes from the Editor

Susan C. Bon

In this issue of the Journal of School Public Relations, authors address an array of topics that impact the decisions made by public school leaders as well as higher education officials. As noted in the previous issue, the journal has expanded its scope to promote success in the increasingly competitive journal publication market and to respond to emerging issues in education that impact school public relations professionals. This wider lens includes six critical areas that are central to public school and higher education administrators: public relations, school and community relations, community education, communication, conflict management/resolution, and human resources management. Given this expanded scope, I would like to invite all prospective authors to consider the Journal of School Public Relations when submitting their next article for publication.

Two of the articles are focused on public and community relations in the higher education setting. Both articles address issues that especially impact higher education institutions, which face increasing accountability and financial demands from community members. In the first article, titled “Experiential Learning in Public Relations Through Student-Conducted Research Assignments,” Ron Prindle explains how the responsibilities of public relations practitioners are expanding to include institutional research. As such, he encourages universities to develop programs that prepare practitioners to meet these new expectations. His article then describes how to develop an undergraduate-level experiential learning course that is focused on promoting research skills for future public relations practitioners. This article is particularly useful to practitioners who would benefit from his provision of extensive details about the course, as well as from guidelines on how instructors should create, implement, and assess a similar course.

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Experiential Learning in Public Relations Through Student-Conducted Research Assignments

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Experiential Learning in Public Relations Through Student-Conducted Research Assignments

Ron Prindle

ABSTRACT: As the responsibilities of public relations practitioners continue to expand to include institutional research, it is essential for universities to develop programs that prepare practitioners for these new expectations. This article describes the development of an experiential learning course focused on research for future public relations practitioners who were enrolled in an innovative undergraduate-level public relations research methods course. As part of the course, the third- and fourth-year public relations students conducted action research for an actual client. Details are provided about the course, along with guidelines on how instructors should create, implement, and assess a similar course.

KEYWORDS: experiential learning, research, focus groups, public relations, educational methods, practice-centered curricula, public relations

Introduction

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A Comparison of Relevant Labor Markets to Determine Full-Time Community College Faculty Salaries

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A Comparison of Relevant Labor Markets to Determine Full-Time Community College Faculty Salaries

Henry Tran

Douglas A. Smith

ABSTRACT: Full-time community college faculty salaries are typically established by fixed salary schedules. The salaries offered by comparative districts often influence the determination of specific values for salaries on a fixed schedule (i.e., relevant labor markets). Relevant labor markets can be defined in a variety of ways. The purpose of this study was to examine differences in the minimum base and average full-time faculty salaries as determined by different relevant labor markets defined by geographic area, district size, district wealth, and district performance. These labor markets are based on their corresponding economic principles (supply and demand, economy of scale, ability to pay, and cost-benefits). Data was obtained from the 2011–2012 academic year for all California community colleges districts (n = 72). Findings suggest that for practical purposes, it makes little difference which relevant labor market was selected, as pay differentials between the labor markets were minimal. Consequently, justifications are presented for the use of each of the four labor markets, emphasizing consideration for selection of a labor market based on district performance. This latter selection can serve community colleges from a public relations perspective in an effort to further demonstrate accountability for salary expenditures and student outcomes.

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Principal Dispositions Toward Using a Commercial Protocol to Screen Potential and Actual Applicants for Teaching Positions

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Principal Dispositions Toward Using a Commercial Protocol to Screen Potential and Actual Applicants for Teaching Positions

Kristin E. Barker

Theodore J. Kowalski

ABSTRACT: This study examined the dispositions of principals in three suburban school districts toward using a commercial protocol to screen potential or actual applicants for teaching positions. The perceived relative importance of a protocol score and other screening criteria were determined by rankings. In addition, levels of association between principal dispositions and each of three predictor variables (level of school assignment, teaching experience, and administrative experience) were ascertained. Findings revealed that 91% of the principals had a positive or somewhat positive disposition toward the protocol. Even so, five other screening criteria (verbal communication skills, demeanor, quality of previous teaching experiences, philosophy of education, and written communication skills) were rated as being more important than a protocol score. Associations between dispositions and each of the three predictor variables were small. A coefficient of determination (R2 ) indicates that the three predictor variables collectively accounted for only 2.5% of the variability of principal dispositions.

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Employee Settlement Agreements

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Employee Settlement Agreements

Effective Employment Practice or Public Relations Nightmare?

Richard T. Geisel

Susan C. Bon

David G. Buckman

ABSTRACT: This article examines the public policy concerns that arose in selected court cases involving disputes over the use of separation agreements and the practice of quiet resignations by teachers accused of sexual abuse or misconduct with students. Given the serious implications of teacher sexual misconduct with students, schools must balance the public policy expectations and best interests of children while also recognizing the procedural and statutory protections that safeguard teachers’ employment rights. Finally, the article concludes with a discussion of practical solutions based on the professional practices of public relations specialists and urges human resource leaders to eliminate the practices of secret separation agreements and quiet resignations when an accused teacher’s misconduct involves sexual abuse or inappropriate sexual relationships with students. Instead, schools should adhere to the mandatory child abuse reporting laws that apply to school employees in all states.

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