ERIC Number: ED315241
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
A Model for Science Education Reform in Rural Schools: An Inservice Program for Local Team Leadership Development.
Prather, J. Preston; Hartshorn, Robert L.
In a sweeping effort to improve science education in Tennessee, a new curriculum framework was developed that mandated "hands-on" experiences for students, beginning in kindergarten. To smooth out problems in elementary science instruction arising from the mandate, the Center of Excellence for the Enrichment of Science and Mathematics Education at the University of Tennessee at Martin developed training programs and materials. The teacher education program model, called the Elementary Science Education Institute (ESEI), included a four-member team training structure that was central to its success. The ESEI was a response to traditional problems in science education, including the lack of supportive administrators and science specialists in rural areas. Administrators and elementary teachers took part in the two-phase program, which consisted of intensive academic preparation for nine four-member teams, and in-service field training carried out by the teams in their schools and surrounding districts. Science academicians and educators provided the initial instruction. Use of the model produced favorable changes in science content mastery, attitudes toward science, computer literacy, knowledge of the "hands-on" approach, and achievement by the teams' elementary students. Through their participation, ESEI teachers, principals, and superintendents assumed leadership roles. Also, public awareness and support for elementary science education were among the most important benefits the model produced. (TES)
Descriptors: Educational Change, Elementary Education, Elementary School Science, Hands on Science, Higher Education, Improvement Programs, Inservice Teacher Education, Instructional Leadership, Leadership Training, Rural Education, Science Instruction, Science Teachers, Teacher Education Programs, Teaching Methods, Team Training
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Tennessee Higher Education Commission, Nashville.; National Science Foundation, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Tennessee