Volume 25 Issue 4

School Administrators’ and Stakeholders’ Attitudes toward, and Perspective on, School Improvement Planning

Canute S. Thompson

This study explores the attitudes and perspectives of school administrators and other stakeholders on the school improvement planning process. A convenience sampling technique was employed with a sample of 15 schools and 91 respondents. The findings of the study indicated four principal factors, involvement, accountability, plan implementation and efficacy, defined the perspectives of the respondents. These factors were also responsible for 68.83% of the variation in the data. The factor ‘involvement’ accounted for 47.82% of the variation and suggests that the most critical issue affecting how the school improvement planning process is seen is the degree of stakeholder involvement.

A System-Wide, Collaborative, Purposeful, and Sustainable Distributed Leadership Plan Utilizing Teacher Leaders to Facilitate Professional Learning Communities

Juliann Sergi McBrayer, Julie Chance, Summer Pannell, and Pamela Wells 

Through collaboration between one rural southeastern university and a local rural school system of high-poverty in southeast Georgia (a pseudonym, Justice County School System [JCSS]), a mixed method case study analysis was conducted to examine a system-wide professional learning initiative. The goal of this initiative was to provide professional learning that was collaborative, purposeful, and sustainable. The professional learning initiative is a semi-structured plan developed based on distributed leadership to share the responsibilities of administration by utilizing teacher leaders to facilitate system-wide professional learning. In addition, school personnel perceptions of their changes in professional practices as a result of this collaborative PLC work were explored to determine effectiveness of the professional learning communities. The outcome of this study resulted in the presentation of a replicable or modifiable plan that was formalized with evidence-based practices that could be disseminated to other districts and schools exploring similar professional learning opportunities. Georgia certification mandates require that districts and schools possess accountability measures that ensure the professional growth of all school personnel through PLCs. The mode in which JCSS approached professional learning could advance other professional learning initiatives or in many cases launch these initiatives. JCSS should serve as a model system with a proven record of using an innovative professional learning approach that distributed the responsibilities among both administrators and staff, specifically teacher leaders to effectively improve teachers’ classroom practices. Institutions of higher education and local school systems need to implement collaborative, purposeful and sustainable professional learning with fidelity by distributing leadership efforts.

Managing Teacher Attrition Rate For Quality Education in Public Senior Secondary Schools in Rivers State, Nigeria

Chinyerem U. Madumere-Obike, Chinyere C. Ukala, and Akachukwu I. Nwabueze

This study examined the management of teacher attrition rate for quality education delivery in public senior secondary schools in Rivers State, Nigeria. Three research questions and two hypotheses were formulated to guide the study. Analytical survey design was adopted. Population of the study consisted of two hundred and forty-seven (247) public secondary schools with 247 male and female principals and 7,713 teachers in Rivers State. The sample size consisted of 1,104 respondents (both Principals and Teachers) of public senior secondary schools in Rivers State representing 14% of the study population. A self-constructed instrument questionnaire tagged “Managing Teacher Attrition Rate for Quality Education Delivery Questionnaire” (MTARQEDQ) was used for data collection. The instrument was validated and its reliability co-efficient was established at 0.83. The mean and standard deviation were used in answering the research questions while z-test statistical tool were used in testing the hypotheses at a .05 level of significance. The findings revealed that there was no significant difference between the mean scores of principals and teachers on the causes of teacher attrition rate for quality educational delivery in Rivers State public senior secondary schools. Also there was a significant difference between the mean score of principals and teachers on the challenges posed by teacher attrition rate. Significant difference also exists in between the mean scores of male and female teachers on the ways effective management of teacher attrition rate can enhance quality teaching. The study concluded that better services and good welfare packages for teachers can reduce teacher attrition rate. Paying attention to teachers by giving them equal regards with other professions will increase teachers’ retention.

Meeting the Challenges of Financial Difficulties:  How Metro-Atlanta School Districts Act

Tak Cheung Chan and Robert Morris

School districts of the United States have to address their financial problems when economy is in difficulty. This study examines the financial practices of the school districts in metro-Atlanta area to understand how they operate their systems to meet with the challenges. Personal interviews were held with financial officers of six participating school districts. A researcher-developed questionnaire was used to solicit data in four areas of school finance: budgeting, cash management, auditing and financial forecast. Findings of the study indicate that school districts monitor their current budget carefully by working closely with state and local tax commissioners. Districts strictly control their expenditures and trim their current budget with priorities. Additionally, they work with site administrators to ensure their full compliance of the financial procedures.