3071 Articles
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Medium 9781475845907

Blacked Out and Whited Out: The Double Bind of Gifted Black Females Who Are Often a Footnote in Educational Discourse . . . Donna Y. Ford, Breshawn N. Harris, Janice A. Byrd, and Nicole McZeal Walters

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Blacked Out and Whited Out

The Double Bind of Gifted Black Females Who Are Often a Footnote in Educational Discourse

Donna Y. Ford

Breshawn N. Harris

Janice A. Byrd

Nicole McZeal  Walters

ABSTRACT: Black females are often placed in a difficult position of facing barriers in educational, vocational, and social settings that relegate them to second-class status when compared to issues facing Black males and those facing White females. Sharing race with one and gender with the other, the lived experiences of Black females is understudied and perhaps even discounted in the increasing racial injustices facing Black males and sexism facing White females. In this article, the authors address these neglects in the context of gifted education and Advanced Placement. We attend to what has been written about gifted and/or high-achieving Black females regarding areas that have been neglected and needs more attention to ensure that this student group is more than a footnote in educational and social justice work.

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Medium 9781475845907

“For Real Love”: How Black Girls Benefit from a Politicized Ethic of Care . . . Monique Lane

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

“For Real Love”

How Black Girls Benefit from a Politicized Ethic of Care

Monique Lane

ABSTRACT: This article examines the concept of a politicized ethic of care, a teaching philosophy that is commonly rooted in the pedagogies of exemplary Black female teachers. Data from a larger study of a girls’ empowerment program at a public high school are used to argue in favor of this pedagogical tradition, which has been proven to facilitate the development of positive social identities and schooling behaviors among African American female students. The author challenges Western and gender-neutral approaches to caring for urban Black girls through an inductive analysis of curricula, in-class video footage, student artifacts, and interviews with former participants. Implications for teacher education research are presented.

KEY WORDS: culturally relevant care, culturally responsive pedagogy, urban education, Black feminist pedagogy, Black female teachers, Black female participants

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Medium 9781475845907

Assessment Reform in Shanghai: Issues and Challenges . . . Charlene Tan and Connie S. L. Ng

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Assessment Reform in Shanghai

Issues and Challenges

Charlene Tan

Connie S. L. Ng

ABSTRACT: This article investigates the perceptions of educators from Shanghai on the assessment system and reform in their municipality. The study shows that the Chinese educators perceive the conventional assessment system in Shanghai, particularly the national college entrance exam (gaokao), to be rigorous and fair but inadequate in fostering the holistic development of students. While the Chinese educators support the current assessment reform that is aimed at holistic education, they highlight the challenges of enacting alternative assessment due to prevailing historical and socio-cultural conditions. The case of Shanghai illustrates the continual relevance, strengths, and weaknesses of conventional assessment as well as its potential in complementing alternative assessment.

KEY WORDS: alternative assessment, assessment reform, conventional assessment, gaokao, Shanghai

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Medium 9781475845907

Selecting a Reading Intervention Program for Struggling Readers: A Case Study of an Urban District . . . Kathryn C. Auletto and Mary-Kate Sableski

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Selecting a Reading Intervention Program for Struggling Readers

A Case Study of an Urban District

Kathryn C. Auletto

Mary-Kate Sableski

ABSTRACT: Reading intervention programs provide the foundation for the educational success of students, especially those who are considered struggling readers. States across the country recently implemented legislation related to reading achievement, in which districts are required to provide specific literacy interventions to struggling readers in order to prevent retention. The choice in reading instructional programs has long-term impact on the future of students, as it is these programs that determine the need for retention in response to this legislation. This research study examines the factors that affect the decision of an urban district in selecting a reading intervention program to support struggling readers. The primary data sources include interviews and observations of two teachers who have chosen different reading intervention programs within the district. This study provides insights into schools currently affected by this policy and how they are choosing to respond to the new demands. The research question is: What factors influence an urban school district’s decision about specific reading instruction programs for struggling readers in response to state legislation requirements?

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Medium 9781475836813

Pay for Progress

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Pay for Progress

The Relationship Between Florida Districts’ Teacher Salary Offerings and Their High School Dropout Rates

Henry Tran

David G. Buckman

ABSTRACT: While teacher effectiveness literature has suggested a potential promising relationship between test-score-based teacher quality and student test score based growth , the question of whether teachers can improve student dropout rates is not as well understood. Grounding our work based on theories that suggest higher salaries may attract better teachers, we utilize panel analyses on three years’ worth of data (2012–2014) to estimate the potential impact of Florida public school districts’ teacher offerings on their dropout rates. We define teacher salaries in three different ways: (1) districts’ average teacher salary, (2) teachers’ earning potential with a given level of education (i.e., bachelor’s and master’s degree holders) within the districts, and (3) districts’ salary-level offering. Our findings support the assertion that improved pay is positively related to lower student dropouts. This finding contributes significantly to the teacher quality, teacher salary, and the high school dropout prevention literature and has policy implications.

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Medium 9781475844849

Looking Behind the Curtain

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Eleanor Drago-Severson

Patricia Maslin-Ostrowski
Jessica Blum-DeStefano

Looking Behind the Curtain

Principals’ Internal Experiences of Managing Pressing Challenges

ABSTRACT: This article extends mixed-methods longitudinal research with school and district leaders (2008–present) about their most pressing leadership challenges. Here—through in-depth, qualitative interviews—we explore how a subsample of 30 principals described and understood their internal experiences of addressing pressing challenges. More specifically, using an adaptive/technical lens, social-emotional frameworks, and constructive-developmental theory, we illuminate how principals’ social-emotional and developmental capacities influenced their leadership, and highlight findings with in-depth mini-cases. By focusing on the inner workings of principals’ leadership for managing change, this article offers implications for professional practice and school-wide change locally and globally, leadership preparation, policy, and future research.

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Medium 9781475836813

Community-Building and One-Way Tweets

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Community-Building and One-Way Tweets

How American “Effective Schools” Use Twitter for Stakeholder Communication

Sarah Maben

Brianna  Henneke Hodges

Karley Goen

ABSTRACT: Researchers analyzed 1,948 tweets from 13 independent school districts in the U.S.-based Effective Schools Project for evidence of one-way and two-way communication with stakeholders over a 45-day period. In this mixed method study, tweets were overwhelmingly one-way in nature, consistent with existing literature; only 1.9% of tweets were categorized as two-way communication, or seeking response and soliciting feedback from stakeholders. The majority of tweets served a community-building purpose. Themes of the highlight reel, reliance on links to other sites or social networks, text-heavy messages, and centralized versus decentralized posting emerged from the school district tweets.

KEYWORDS : stakeholder communication, Twitter, social media, school ­districts, K–12 education

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Medium 9781475844849

Embedding Performance Assessments for Leaders into Preparation

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Margaret Terry Orr

Liz Hollingworth

Janice Cook

Embedding Performance Assessments for Leaders into Preparation

A Comparison of Approaches, Candidates, and Assessment Evidence

ABSTRACT: This article presents pilot study results of two leadership performance assessments, designed for a California principal preparation program and embedded in preparation using two learning approaches. The pilot study had two purposes: to evaluate the assessments’ content validity and to evaluate the candidates’ leadership skills as demonstrated through their assessment products and an independent self-assessment tool. The evidence showed the tasks to be valid and useful tools for formative leadership development for different candidates and school settings. Participant feedback on the assessments’ benefits and independent self-assessment ratings provided construct validation. We concluded that these are promising assessment tools for programs’ use in candidate assessment.

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Medium 9781475844849

Urban Principal Narratives on Including Black Boys with Emotional Disabilities

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

David E. DeMatthews

Urban Principal Narratives on Including Black Boys with Emotional Disabilities

ABSTRACT: Black boys in racially segregated urban schools are vulnerable to the trappings of the school-to-prison-pipeline. In this article, I use narrative inquiry and critical race theory (CRT) to examine the stories of two elementary school principals struggling to create more inclusive schools for Black boys with emotional disabilities (ED) in a racially segregated and low-performing district. Each principal narrative describes efforts to transition a student with ED from a district-created self-contained program to a full-time or near-full-time placement in an inclusive general education classroom. Despite the principals’ overall success in creating more inclusive schools for most students with disabilities in a challenging district context, each principal narrative ends with a student being unsuccessful in an inclusive setting and returned to a segregated program. The findings highlight how principals who recognize the vulnerability of Black boys in special education are compelled to create more inclusive schools, but can confront significant institutional, organizational, and social and emotional challenges. Applying CRT to these cases provides additional insights into how principals can develop inclusive schools and challenge segregated programs. While some inclusive leadership practices aimed at improving the educational outcomes of Black boys are identified throughout these narratives, the significance of the study lies in documenting and understanding how principals experience the barriers and challenges to creating more socially just and inclusive schools.

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Medium 9781475845914

Perceptions of Elementary Principals on Compass Evaluation System

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Eboni Brown

Krishna Bista

Perceptions of Elementary Principals on Compass Evaluation System

A Case of Louisiana Schools

ABSTRACT: This study explores the perceptions of elementary school principals on the Compass teacher evaluation system in a Southern Louisiana school district in the United States. There were seven themes that emerged from the qualitative data analysis: compliance, subjectivity, accountability, expectation, confinement, inconsistency, and helpfulness. Data analysis led to the following major findings: (a) all principals comply with the functions of Compass; (b) principals experience subjectivity when using the Compass teacher evaluation system; (c) principals believe that Compass holds teachers accountable for their performances; (d) principals would like Compass to be consistent, unambiguous, and not place limitations on teacher practices; and (e) principals experience a lack of involvement and support from the central office.

KEY WORDS: Elementary Principals, Compass, Teacher Evaluation, Accountability, Professional Development, Central Office

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Medium 9781475836813

Public Relations and the School Superintendent: From Theory to Practice

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Public Relations and the School Superintendent

From Theory to Practice

Terry L. Hapney, Jr.

ABSTRACT: This article examines public relations in the K–12 school system context. Specifically, the goal of this article is to examine the school superintendent as the chief public relations practitioner of the school system and how he/she would operate as such in the realms of seven public relations theories, as the superintendent works toward meeting the goals and objectives of his/her school district: strategic management function, communitas versus corporatas, persuasion, storytelling and branding, postmodernism, understanding, and sociology.

Introduction and Overview

Schools are organizations that are located in every community in the United States. Stakeholders in, and related to, schools include students, parents, teachers, administrators, school board members, legislators and other government officials, and alumni, among others. Research shows strong communication skills are a must for superintendents of school systems. Unfortunately, the assumption is anyone can be an effective communicator (Kowalski, 2005). Communication is at the heart of an effective public relations program in an organization (Kowalski, 2011). Many superintendents question the relevance of allocating funds and designating time to engage in public relations (2011). Studies have shown that superintendents have received poor performance evaluations and have even been dismissed due to “inconsistent and incompetent communication” (Kowalski, 2005, p. 112). Thus, the chief administrator in the school system has a big problem to overcome, and effective school public relations can help solve that problem.

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Medium 9781475845914

The Evaluation Process, Administrator Feedback, and Teacher Self-Efficacy

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Rebeca Mireles-Rios

John A. Becchio

The Evaluation Process, Administrator Feedback, and Teacher Self-Efficacy

ABSTRACT: The teacher evaluation process provides opportunity for instructional feedback and teacher improvement, but also may influence the beliefs teachers have about the quality of their own work and their confidence levels as a teacher. Self-efficacy plays a vital role in determining teacher effectiveness and the students’ academic experience, but little is known about the impact the teacher evaluation process has on teacher self-efficacy. Interview data from 28 high school teachers indicated that the pre-observation meeting has potential to significantly benefit teachers. In addition, feedback from administrators that included both strengths and weaknesses during the post-observation phase seemed to have the most influence on teachers’ self-confidence. Implications of this study’s findings were provided and may be useful for administrators to conduct teacher evaluations in a manner that serves to enhance teacher self-efficacy.

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Medium 9781475844849

Student Bullying, Teacher Protection, and Administrator Role Ambiguity

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

W. Sean Kearney

Page Smith

Student Bullying, Teacher Protection, and Administrator Role Ambiguity

A Multi-level Analysis of Elementary Schools

ABSTRACT: This investigation examines the impact teacher protection and principal role ambiguity have on elementary school student bullying. Data were collected from 1,554 teachers and 198 campus administrators from 104 elementary schools in Texas. HLM analyses are employed to identify the effect that teacher protection, administrator role ambiguity, school size, and socioeconomic status have on student bullying. The findings indicate when teachers espouse a belief in protecting students from bullying and administrators clearly understand their roles, bullying incidents decrease. Thus, enhancing teacher protection and administrator role clarity may serve as useful tools to help educators reduce incidents of school bullying.

KEY WORDS: Student bullying, Teacher protection from bullying, Administrator role clarity

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Medium 9781475845914

Academic Optimism, Enabling Structures, and Student Achievement

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Karen Anderson

Frances Kochan

Lisa A. W. Kensler

Ellen H. Reames

Academic Optimism, Enabling Structures, and Student Achievement

Delving into Relationships

ABSTRACT: This study examined the relationships between enabling structures, academic optimism, and student achievement to determine whether academic optimism served as a mediator between the two. Student achievement was measured using both criterion-referenced and norm-referenced tests. Findings indicated a relationship between academic optimism, enabling structures, and student achievement. Also, academic optimism appeared to serve as a mediator between enabling structures and norm-referenced assessments but did not correlate with criterion-referenced tests. This study is one of only a few seeking to establish connections among enabling structures, academic optimism, and student achievement, measured at the school level, in elementary schools. The use of mediation also offers a unique perspective on the literature.

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Medium 9781475844849

(Re)constructing the Language of the Achievement Gap to an Opportunity Gap

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Osly J. Flores

(Re)constructing the Language of the Achievement Gap to an Opportunity Gap

The Counternarratives of Three African American Women School Leaders

ABSTRACT: This article situates the counternarrative of three African American female school principals and their leadership practices toward equity using a critical race theory framework (CRT). The data come from a larger exploratory study that addressed the understanding of the so-called achievement gap by school leaders. Four prevalent themes emerged through the use of a CRT analysis: (1) Mind-set toward opportunity gap; (2) recognizing issues: race, racism, and interest convergence; (3) holistic approaches toward “Our” students; and (4) the (real) opportunity of loss. I conclude with four contexts for implication for school leadership practice.

Key Words: School Leadership, Critical Race Theory, Counternarrative, ­Opportunity Gap, Social Justice

Introduction

The persistent discourse on the achievement gaps in educational circles demonstrates the challenge in the United States of providing adequate learning opportunities for all its students. The National Center for Education Statistics (2015) refers to the use of the so-called achievement gap terminology as occurring “when one groups of students (such as, students grouped by race/ethnicity, gender) outperforms another group and the difference in average scores for the two groups in statistically significant.”
The 44th annual Phi Delta Kappa/Gallup Poll (2012) on the public’s attitudes on public schools, for example, revealed that 89% of the national participants recognized that the closing of the achievement gap was something of a milestone (Bushaw & Lopez, 2012). Indeed, during the last couple of decades, the elevated federal and state accountability policies (Fusarelli, 2004) have further underscored and communicated how our public K–12 educational institutions have struggled to improve the educational achievements of our black and Latina/o students (Diamond, 2006). The extended focus and prominence on the achievement gap, however, has brought unfavorable conditions for some students. The terminology has become so readily accepted to suggest the cause of educational disparities to be inherent in black and Latino students’ (Venzant Chambers, 2009).

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