ERIC Number: ED412624
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Professional Community in Chicago Elementary Schools: Facilitating Factors and Organizational Consequences. Revised. Final Deliverable to OERI.
Bryk, Anthony; Camburn, Eric; Louis, Karen Seashore
Attention to professional community has increased markedly over the last few years as part of both practitioner and scholarly efforts to promote improvements in student learning. Interest in this area joins two previously distinct literatures--one dealing with the benefits of communal school organization, another with enhanced teacher professionalism--to formulate a theoretical framework for a school-based professional community. Using data from a large urban school district, this paper empirically tests the impact of structural, human, and social factors on the emergence of school-based professional community and the extent to which such developments in turn promote more productive organizational functioning. Data were obtained from a survey of public school elementary teachers in Chicago administered during spring 1994 to 5,690 teachers in 248 elementary schools. Three core practices are found in a school-based professional community--reflective dialogue among teachers, deprivatized practice, and peer collaboration. The findings also underscore the importance for small school size as a key structural factor. Perhaps the most important and hopeful conclusion is that a professional community can exist in very ordinary urban schools. Moreover, positive teacher reports about professional community came from a wide cross-section of schools. One table is included. Appendices contain methodological notes. (Contains 60 references.) (LMI)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.; Wisconsin Center for Education Research, Madison.
Authoring Institution: Center on Organization and Restructuring of Schools, Madison, WI.