Author: Gail Fern Solomon
Title: A Study of Teacher Response to a Program of Whole School Change
Institution: Florida Atlantic University
Dissertation Advisor: Dr. Patricia Maslin-Ostrowski
Degree: Doctor of Education
This single site qualitative case study of a large high school was conducted during the course of one school year. The study focused on how secondary level teachers of the four course content areas, language arts, science, social studies and mathematics, responded to a program of whole school change. In addition to teachers, the administration and support staff were interviewed. The primary sources of data were the results of one hour interviews, document analysis and researcher non-participant observations.
The purpose of this study was to identify and understand teachers’ various responses to a program of whole school change. The major concepts underlying the study were the meaning of change, the need for schools to change, the change process, the role of people involved in the change process and the proliferation of various programs of whole school change.
The research findings highlighted the importance of: recognizing only one whole school change initiative as the primary focus, being knowledgeable of the whole school change initiative, constantly working on personalizing the schools vision, facing external and internal change forces, handling challenges and dealing with the rate of change.
The conclusions of the study are that from attempted implementation of multiple school change initiatives perhaps only one change initiative will rise to prominence, teacher involvement and buy-in are important components of successful whole school change, educators face both internal and external factors while implementing whole school change and the principal plays a crucial role in successful whole school change.
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