The socialization and professionalization of teachers: A case study.
AuthorRussell, Cinda Tattrie.
Committee ChairClark, Donald C.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractAs members of the general public lament the lack of success in America's public schools, those responsible for the educational program begin to look to teachers for improvement in student outcomes. Blending teachers with leadership in this enterprise presents special challenges to governing boards and administrators. The research asks these questions: (1) How do teachers exercise leadership? (2) What roles do teachers assume when leadership opportunities are presented? (3) What constraints prevent teachers from achieving success in leadership roles? This qualitative research looks at a team of six teachers and a principal who were hired by the governing board of a suburban school district in a southwestern state to plan the program for the first high school in the district. The planning was to include decisions about administration, budgeting, curriculum, personnel and school culture. Basing their plans on ideas from Systems Thinking and Coalition of Essential Schools, the Planners attempted to incorporate concepts such as teacher-as-facilitator, student as manager of learning, less is more, personalization of student contact with adults, and authentic assessment, including portfolios and performance based competencies. The eighteen month participant observation provided the researcher with interview opportunities, a complete set of planning documents and nearly a thousand pages of script from meetings attended. Coding the data by behavioral characteristics outlined in the literature on Effective Schools, the researcher found that teachers do not assume leadership roles in the same way that principals fulfill that role. When teachers leave the classroom to assume administrative functions, they are constrained by ambiguity from supervisors, lack role definition, negative community influences, and gender biases. More importantly, their inability to communicate either a decision-making process or the political language necessary to overcome these constraints forced them to retreat to the comfort of their teacher roles.
Degree ProgramEducational Administration