ERIC Number: ED381871
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Dec-6
Teachers' Professional Community in Restructuring Schools.
Louis, Karen Seashore; And Others
This paper reports findings of a study that is grounded in the assumption that the ways in which teachers interact outside their classrooms may be critical to the future of school restructuring and the effects of restructuring on students. The paper develops a framework for analyzing professional community within schools, examines school characteristics that support the development of professional community, and evaluates the consequences of professional community for the responsibility teachers take for student learning. Data were collected during 1991-94 from 8 elementary, 8 middle, and 8 high schools across the United States that demonstrated progress in organizational restructuring. Methods included onsite visits and a teacher survey that elicited 910 responses. The response rate ranged from 69 to 100 percent across the schools. Two-stage path analysis and hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) were used to analyze the data. The data suggest that teachers' working conditions--the individual's job satisfaction and the school's sense of professional community--are a primary factor associated with responsibility for student learning. The findings also suggest that most national, state, and local policies designed to increase teachers' job performance are misdirected. Finally, the data indicate that professional development is less important in producing professional community--and therefore, responsibility for student learning--than changing the climate and culture of the school. Six tables and five figures are included. Appendices contain a description of variable construction and the stages of statistical analysis. (LMI)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Wisconsin Center for Education Research, Madison.; Center on Organization and Restructuring of Schools, Madison, WI.