1092 Articles
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Medium 9781475833201

1033 Teacher Leaders as Change Agents: Scaling Up a Middle School Reading Initiative

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Karla Scornavacco

Alison G. Boardman

Chao Wang

Teacher Leaders as Change Agents

Scaling Up a Middle School Reading Initiative

Abstract: We investigated teacher leadership in 18 middle schools in one district engaged in an initiative to scale up Collaborative Strategic Reading (CSR). This mixed-methods analysis found variability in CSR teacher leadership, including the number of hours allotted for release time to support the initiative, the activities teacher leaders enacted, and the support they received. Although findings suggest that the full vision of teacher leadership was difficult to implement at scale, teacher leadership was used to leverage change at several sites. We present a case study of a school that demonstrated collective, shared own ership of both CSR and the teacher leadership model. This study highlights the complexity of defining the expectations and support for a district-funded teacher leader role and raises questions about the need and priorities for the role at every school.

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Medium 9781475833201

905 The Diverse Faces of Teacher Leadership: A Typology and Survey Tool

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

CHRISTINE LEE BAE

KATHRYN N. HAYES

DAWN M. O’CONNOR

JEFFERY C. SEITZ

RACHELLE DISTEFANO

The Diverse Faces of Teacher Leadership

A Typology and Survey Tool

Abstract: The potential benefits of teacher leadership are widely acknowledged; however, the conceptualization of this construct is in need of theoretical development and analytic clarification. The purpose of this mixed methodology study was to operationalize distinct types of teacher leadership into an organized typology, based on case studies of teacher leaders in a science education project. In addition, through confirmatory factor analysis, evidence for factors representing the distinct types of teacher leadership identified in the typology was found in a general teacher leadership survey. Implications for teacher leadership research and practice are discussed.

KEYWORDS: Teacher Leadership, Typology, Science Education

Introduction

If we expect ambitious, intellectually engaged people to become teachers and remain in our public schools, we must offer them a career path that is exciting and varied over the long term, and which includes opportunities to lead among adults, not just children.

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Medium 9781475833201

1002 The Interplay Between Principal Leadership and Teacher Leader Efficacy

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

KRISTY COOPER STEIN

MICHAEL MACALUSO

RANDI Nevins STANULIS

The Interplay Between Principal Leadership and Teacher Leader Efficacy

ABSTRACT: Researchers assert that the influence of teacher leadership on school change is highly contingent on the actions and beliefs of school principals. Self-efficacy theory also suggests that the extent to which teacher leaders feel they can impact change will influence how they engage with leadership opportunities. This study considers the interplay between these two forces and uses eleven embedded case studies to examine how principal leadership style—transformational, transactional, or laissez-faire—influences teacher leader efficacy. Findings suggest that teacher leader efficacy is rooted both in the teacher leaders’ self-perceptions and in how those perceptions influence and are influenced by principals’ expectations and leadership behaviors.

KEY WORDS: Teacher Leadership, Principal, Leadership Styles, Teacher Leader Efficacy, Embedded Case Study

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Medium 9781475833201

975 The Roles of Teacher Leaders in Guiding PLCs Focused on Disciplinary Literacy

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

MEGIN CHARNER-LAIRD

JACY IPPOLITO

CHRISTINA L. DOBBS

The Roles of Teacher Leaders in Guiding PLCs Focused on Disciplinary Literacy

ABSTRACT: This study investigates the experiences of teacher leaders working to facilitate professional learning communities (PLCs) focused on inquiry into disciplinary literacy at the high school level. Specifically, we examine the moves that team leaders made to preserve focus and learning within their PLCs and how participants experienced their leadership. We found that the teacher leaders in this study established structures and routines for their PLCs to work productively together and that their facilitation was crucial for the success of inquiry, and thus for participants’ professional learning and growth.

KEY WORDS: Teacher Leadership, Disciplinary Literacy, Professional Learning Communities, Inquiry, Professional Learning

As accountability pressures increase and new requirements for instruction shift with the widespread adoption of Common Core State Standards (CCSS), many educators continue to look to professional learning communities (PLCs) as a primary learning mechanism to bring their practice in line with standards. Some see PLCs as an ideal model for collaborative professional learning (Talbert, 2010), while others point to the sense of collective responsibility that is built through participation in a PLC (Harris & Muijs, 2002; Servage, 2008). While PLCs, which provide regular opportunities for groups of teachers to work together on improving practice, theoretically present many possibilities for improving teacher and student learning, the on-the-ground experience of participants engaged in PLCs often does not live up to these ideals, particularly if the professional learning model is imposed top-down (Fairman & Mackenzie, 2012; Talbert, 2010). Because participants are rarely taught how to work collaboratively or provided with ongoing guidance for how to best facilitate and utilize PLC time together, many teachers in PLCs struggle to collaborate effectively. Instead, teachers can often be seen working independently while in the same space, or focusing on logistical matters rather than problems of practice (Hargreaves & Dennis, 2009; Neil & Johnston, 2005; Supovitz, 2002; Talbert, 2010; Troen & Boles, 2012).

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Medium 9781475833201

900 Special Issue Introduction—Teacher Leadership: Furthering the Research Agenda

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

MELINDA M. MANGIN

Special Issue Introduction

Teacher Leadership: Furthering the Research Agenda

Education policy makers and K–12 practitioners have embraced teacher leadership as a critical element of school improvement. Teacher leadership, as part of a comprehensive reform strategy, is thought to increase teacher motivation and commitment, create opportunities for teacher learning and development, and facilitate sustained instructional improvement (Beachum & Dentith, 2004; Curtis, 2013; Mangin & Stoelinga, 2008; York-Barr & Duke, 2004). One recent example of education policy aimed at increasing teacher leadership is Secretary of Education Arne Duncan’s Teach to Lead initiative. This national program seeks to mobilize teachers’ knowledge and skills in an effort to capitalize on valuable human resources and build collective capacity in schools. To date, Teach to Lead has garnered support from 71 educational organizations (see: http://teachtolead.org/). State departments of education have kept pace with this trend, creating teacher leader endorsements that can be added to a teaching certificate (Hohenbrink, Stauffer, Zigler, & Uhlenhake, 2011; Shelton, 2011) and adopting the recently developed Teacher Leader Model Standards as a means to facilitate high-quality teacher leader preparation (Berg, Carver, & Mangin, 2014; Teacher Leadership Exploratory Consortium, 2011).

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Medium 9781475833201

938 Teacher Leadership and High-Stakes Teacher Evaluation: Complementary or Conflicting Approaches to Improvement?

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Melinda M. Mangin

Teacher Leadership and High-Stakes Teacher Evaluation

Complementary or Conflicting Approaches to Improvement?

Abstract: Teacher leadership is frequently implemented alongside top-down mandates as a way to provide both pressure and support for change. At the same time, the convergence of policy tools with fundamentally different theories of change can complicate and hinder improvement efforts. The purpose of this qualitative case study is to examine one instance where policy tools with divergent theoretical assumptions converge: the use of teacher leadership as a capacity-building tool and high-stakes teacher evaluation, an authority tool with sanctions for poor performance. As such, this study investigates the extent to which these two approaches complement one another to facilitate improvement or whether they conflict in ways that are counter-productive. To understand the interplay of high-stakes teacher evaluation and teacher leadership, I conducted an in-depth case study in one high school. Findings from the study indicate that the school and district supported the teacher leader in building teachers’ capacity through high-quality learning experiences. However, the teacher leader’s efforts were hindered by the high-stakes teacher evaluation context, which created a risk-averse learning environment and impeded teachers’ engagement in the kind of learning needed to change instructional practice. Instead of interpreting the high-stakes evaluation as an impetus to embrace available learning opportunities, teachers focused on complying with top-down policy mandates at the expense of learning.

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Medium 9781475832143

The Dynamic Roots of School Leaders’ Twitter Use: A Structurational Perspective on Technology Use

JOURNAL OF SCHOOL LEADERSHIP Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

VINCENT CHO

VIRGINIA SNODGRASS RANGEL

The Dynamic Roots of School Leaders’ Twitter Use

A Structurational Perspective on Technology Use

ABSTRACT: Some postulate that social media tools, such as Twitter, might be used to support educator professional learning. Drawing upon interviews and tweets from 17 school administrators, this study examined the factors and consequences of administrators’ Twitter use. It finds that administrators’ understandings and uses of Twitter changed over time, subject to influences such as interactions with colleagues, one’s sense of online visibility, and abilities to develop workarounds for Twitter’s limitations. The discussion explores issues relating to the future of educators’ social media use, as well as how to theorize about the implementation and adoption of technologies in education.

KEY WORDS: Principals, Social Media, Structuration Theory, Technology

Much of the charm associated with Web 2.0 (e.g., blogs, wikis, social media) derive from hopes around its capacity to distribute information. Today, people can consume, create, and share online content, from almost anywhere and with almost anyone. For instance, arguments that Web 2.0 might be used to support professional learning have become increasingly commonplace (Gunawardena et al., 2009; Hung, 2002; Johnson, 2001). Among such claims, there has been strong enthusiasm for how Twitter may serve as a tool for connecting educators (Burden, 2010; Carpenter & Krutka, 2014; Richardson & Mancabelli, 2011). Such connections could especially benefit school administrators, since they may struggle with professional isolation (Barkley & Becker, 2013; Dussault & Thibodeau, 1997; Cho, 2016) .

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Medium 9781475832143

Principals’ Technology Leadership: How a Conceptual Framework Shaped a Mixed Methods Study

JOURNAL OF SCHOOL LEADERSHIP Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

BARBARA BROWN

MICHELE JACOBSEN

Principals’ Technology Leadership

How a Conceptual Framework Shaped a Mixed Methods Study

ABSTRACT: A multifaceted conceptual framework of principals’ technology leadership informed the design of a mixed methods case study exploring leadership practices across three school jurisdictions in Alberta, Canada. Leadership practices of K-12 school principals involved in making school-wide improvements integrating technology were examined. The intent of this article is to discuss how the conceptual framework influenced the research process as an interconnection of learning theory based on the learning sciences, transformative knowledge-building pedagogies, and the complexities for school leaders as they cultivate a growth-oriented culture. Findings are related to three key areas: (1) leadership preparation is needed in instructional leadership and technological fluency; (2) online networks can support professional learning; and (3) practitioner–researcher partnerships can support innovation in schools.

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Medium 9781475832143

“Obviously, That Worked”: Examining Links between Data Use and Classroom Instruction

JOURNAL OF SCHOOL LEADERSHIP Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

MICHELLE D. VAN LARE

“Obviously, That Worked”

Examining Links between Data Use and Classroom Instruction

ABSTRACT: Ever-growing expectations exist for educators to use assessments to collect, analyze, and interpret data, but how, if at all, are these processes affecting instruction? This descriptive case study of one team of second grade teachers offers an analysis of the links between teachers’ use of data within their collaborative team meetings and instructional decisions in the classroom. Findings illustrate three activities that linked teacher discussions and instruction in classrooms: troubleshooting and normalizing expectations, targeting instruction, and identifying what worked. While these links tightly coupled teachers’ collaborative use of data and assessments with their classroom instruction, they did so by prioritizing isolated instructional responses focused on discrete skills and specific instructional strategies. Implications include building structures that reframe what teachers mean by “worked” when inquiring into student learning.

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Medium 9781475832143

Education Policy in Leadership Practice: “Accountability Talk” in Schools

JOURNAL OF SCHOOL LEADERSHIP Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

REBECCA LOWENHAUPT

JAMES P. SPILLANE

TIM HALLETT

Education Policy in Leadership Practice

“Accountability Talk” in Schools

ABSTRACT: Over the last few decades, high-stakes accountability has become commonplace in education policy both in the United States and internationally. In this paper, we consider the role of school leaders and “accountability talk” in implementing this shift through a case study of one urban school principal’s talk during a period of reform. Consistent with broader policy discourses, the 650 instances of principal rhetoric in 14 elementary school meetings reflected issues of standardization and assessment through rational appeals to logic (logos). However, the principal’s “accountability talk” also relied on rhetorical sequences that wove these rational appeals together with moral (ethos) and emotional (pathos) claims, thereby connecting the accountability paradigm to more established discourses associated with the educational profession. We argue that school principal’s talk is a primary means through which broader institutional changes and local work practices become coupled together, often in ways that blend apparently competing models of organization. As such, accountability talk should be of both empirical and theoretical interest for scholars studying school leadership and education reform.

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Medium 9781475832143

Getting Personal! Twitter Communication between School Districts, Superintendents, and the Public

JOURNAL OF SCHOOL LEADERSHIP Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

YINYING WANG

Getting Personal!

Twitter Communication between School Districts, Superintendents, and the Public

ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study is to examine the Twitter communication between school districts, superintendents, and the public. Content analysis of the tweets posted by the 100 largest U.S. school districts and those district superintendents was performed to investigate how the districts and the superintendents communicated with the public on Twitter. Next, paired sample t-tests were performed to compare the differences between public sentiment toward the districts and the superintendents. The findings suggest that the districts and their superintendents primarily used Twitter for one-way information broadcasting, leaving Twitter’s two-way communication functionality largely untapped. Further, the public expressed significantly less negative sentiment toward the superintendents than the districts, whereas no statistical difference existed in the public’s positive or neutral sentiment toward the districts and the superintendents. The findings provide novel insights into educational institutions’ and leaders’ Twitter communication. More importantly, the findings offer research-based guidance on districts’ and superintendents’ Twitter communication. Recommendations were provided for districts and leaders to use social media effectively and thus engage the public and garner social support for education.

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Medium 9781475832143

Development and Validation of an Instrument to Assess Teacher Leadership Behaviors in a Math–Science Partnership Program

JOURNAL OF SCHOOL LEADERSHIP Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

NITHYA DORAISWAMY

KRISTEN M. PORTER

GRANT WILSON

PETER PAPRZYCKI

CHARLENE M. CZERNIAK

NICOLE TUTTLE

KEVIN CZAJKOWSKI

Development and Validation of an Instrument to Assess Teacher Leadership Behaviors in a Math–Science Partnership Program

ABSTRACT: This paper describes the development and validation of a science teacher leadership instrument modeled on the seven domains of the Teacher Leader Model (TLM) Standards (The Teacher Leadership Exploratory Consortium, 2011). Instrument development was part of National Science Foundation–funded Mathematics and Science Partnership (MSP) program that aimed to develop science teacher leaders through the use of Project-Based Science (PBS) in the context of renewable energy. Ratings of professional development sessions presented by teacher leaders to their peers were analyzed to assess whether the instrument could be used to measure teacher leadership in this context. The resulting TLM Standards Instrument is presented as a valid instrument to observe the development and assessment of teacher leadership.

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Medium 9781475831344

Road to the Code: Examining the Effectiveness of a Phonological Awareness Program

Journal of Evidence-Based Practices for Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Road to the Code : Examining the Effectiveness of a Phonological Awareness Program

Stephanie L. Schmitz

Merilee McCurdy

ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of the Road to the Code phonological awareness program on the development of six, at-risk, kindergarten students’ phonemic awareness, letter–sound knowledge, and decoding skills. This study included three phases, baseline, instructional, and maintenance, with program effectiveness evaluated through a multiple baseline across participants design. Findings indicated that participation in the Road to the Code program resulted in an increase in the students’ measured skills and that some students demonstrated the ability to generalize learned skills to progress monitoring measures containing novel content. Limitations of the study, implications for practice, and future research directions will also be discussed.

THE PROBLEM

Proficient reading is an important skill for a student to demonstrate, both in and out of the classroom. Therefore, reading has been a major focus in elementary school classrooms, and results from a 2013 nationwide reading assessment indicated that students have been making progress. Specifically, the percentage of fourth-grade and eighth-grade students at the proficient reading level has increased significantly compared to scores obtained in both 2011 and 1992, the 2 years of comparison in the most recent report (National Assessment of Educational Progress [NAEP], 2013). Unfortunately, some children have difficulty learning to read (Hosp & MacConnell, 2014). They may start school with fewer early literacy skills and increase such skills at a slower rate than their peers (Ball & Blachman, 1991; Good, Simmons, & Smith, 1998; Lonigan, Allan, & Lerner, 2011). While these students do make progress in reading, often they are unable to close the gap with their typically developing peers without some form of intensive instruction, including special education (Lonigan, Burgess, & Anthony, 2000).

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Medium 9781475831344

A Comparison of Two Classwide Self-Monitoring Interventions for Increasing Academic Engagement Among English Language Learners

Journal of Evidence-Based Practices for Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

A Comparison of Two Classwide Self-Monitoring Interventions for Increasing Academic Engagement Among English Language Learners

Andrea J. Howard

Julie Q. Morrison

Colleen J. Hernan

ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to compare the effects of two classwide self-monitoring interventions designed to increase academic engagement and decrease disruptive behavior among English language learner (ELL) students in a high school classroom. The study compared the effects of two interventions: classwide self-monitoring and classwide peer-assisted self-monitoring. The results indicate that both classwide interventions were equally effective in increasing academic engagement and decreasing disruptive behavior among English language learner students. Recommendations for implementation of these strategies are suggested from teacher acceptability, student acceptability, and intervention adherence outcomes.

THE PROBLEM

Students who are English language learners (ELLs) represent the fastest growing population in American schools today (National Clearinghouse for English Language Acquisition, 2011). In recent years, the population of non-English-speaking households in America has grown 4 times faster than the rate of the general population (Shin & Kominski, 2010). In 2011, an estimated 4.4 million students enrolled in public schools were identified as native speakers of languages other than English, making up 9.1% of the total population of students (National Center for Education Statistics, 2011). Although ELL students in rural school districts represented only 3.9% of the student population in 2011, the percentage of ELL students in large urban school districts was 16.7%. Given the growing population of culturally and linguistically diverse learners in American schools, there is an urgent need to examine the effectiveness of new instructional methodologies, classroom management techniques, and intervention strategies to meet the needs of ELLs.

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Medium 9781475831344

Shaping the Field of General and Special Education: The Role of Evidence in Practice, and Practice in Dissemination

Journal of Evidence-Based Practices for Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Shaping the Field of General and Special Education: The Role of Evidence in Practice, and Practice in Dissemination

Phillip J. Belfiore

David L. Lee

ABSTRACT: Much has been written about the gap between applied research (evidence) and the implementation of that research in educational settings (practice). Much less has been written on the potential of evidence-based practices, when designed, implemented, and reported accurately, to shape the field of general and special education at the school, classroom, and student levels. This paper provides some guidelines to assist educational researchers and educational practitioners in (1) closing the gap between evidence and practice and (2) using practice as the basis for experimentally controlled research in the context of real-world education setting.

The most recent reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (1965), the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) represents a major rewrite of its predecessor, the No Child Left Behind Act, shifting greater control of key educational issues to the state and local school districts, and away from the federal government. Additionally, the ESSA represents a shift away from “scientifically based research” and toward “evidence-based,” citing “evidence-based” 63 times within the content of the ESSA. The ESSA describes evidence-based as those strategies that demonstrate either (1) a statistically significant effect or (2) a “rationale based on high quality research findings or positive evaluations” (Part F., Title VIII, Sec. 8002 [290]). Strategies demonstrating statistical significance are further delineated across a three-tiered outcome showing (1) strong evidence (at least one well-implemented experimental study), (2) moderate evidence (at least one well-implemented quasi-experimental study), or (3) promising evidence (at least one well-designed and well-implemented correlational study).

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