ERIC Number: ED438613
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1999-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
Engaging with School Improvement: A Study of Factors Influencing Initial and Sustained Involvement in the Quest Network.
Quest is a school-improvement program based on principles of inquiry, collaboration, and action research. Quest supports and investigates ongoing school-improvement efforts through rallies, summer symposia, a Scholars program, visits to participating schools, communication via listserv and mailings, and the creation of a Quest network of schools. This report discusses an exploratory, multi-method study of the factors a sample of Quest participants believed had been important to their schools' initial and sustained involvement with the project. Six focus-group interviews were conducted with 41 Quest network members, and 26 telephone interviews and 58 surveys concerning factors affecting engagement were completed. To compare schools' levels of involvement in the network, ratings were assigned each school, indicating an assessment of the extent of its engagement. Elementary and high school data were also compared. In terms of qualitative results, administrative support--both logistical and moral--was cited most often as the factor most important to initial and sustained engagement with Quest. Also important were: the reliability of funding to support participation; the relevance of Quest to schools' current concerns, goals, and beliefs; and the schoolwide consensus for involvement in the network. Elementary schools rated more highly than high schools in the importance of time to do improvement work at their schools, the amount of time available for professional development, and the role of vision for learning as a factor in their schools' initial involvement in Quest. Six items are appended, including the Focus Group Protocol, the Quest Engagement Survey, and the Completed Evaluation Standards Checklist.(DFR)
Descriptors: Educational Change, Educational Improvement, Elementary Secondary Education, School Culture, School Involvement
AEL, Inc., P.O. Box 1348, Charleston, WV 25325-1348. Tel: 304-347-0400; Tel: 800-624-9120 (Toll Free); Fax: 304 347-0487; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://www.ael.org.
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Appalachia Educational Lab., Charleston, WV.