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ERIC Number: ED555952
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 199
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3035-2991-7
A Mixed-Methods Study of the Transformation Model for Rapid Improvement of Low Achieving Rural Schools
Atkinson Duina, Angela
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Boston University
New regulations attached to ARRA funding of federal School Improvement Fund grants aimed at producing rapid turnaround of low performing schools were highly criticized as unsuitable for rural schools. This mixed-methods study looked at the implementation of the School Improvement Fund Transformation Model in two rural Maine high schools during the first half of their School Improvement Grants (SIGs). The study focused on six questions that are pertinent to the initial stages of the transformation process: (1) What does implementation of the Transformation Model look like in a rural school setting? (2) How closely does actual implementation match Model specifications? (3) What are teachers' and leaders' perceptions of the Transformation Model and its implementation? (4) Do the implemented changes produce changes in measures of leadership? (5) Do the implemented changes produce changes in measures of teachers' professional community? (6) Do schools implementing the Transformation Model report greater changes in the survey measures of leadership and teacher community than comparison schools? Qualitative findings indicate that identification as a low-achieving school and implementation of the grant caused disruption, that schools were not prepared to implement major changes during the first year of the grant, that different schools' versions of the Model look very different, and that there is a need for data systems to be in place before some required steps can be implemented. Many aspects of the Transformation Model are supported by teachers and administrators, though there is some misalignment of grant goals and school goals, and there is ambivalence regarding the need to replace principals. Survey results point to decreases in perceptions of leadership, including items associated with Turnaround Leadership and Instructional Leadership, increases in faculties' trust of students and parents, and some increases in teachers' Reflective Dialogue. In comparison schools, changes are not as dramatic and no changes reach a level of significance. Recommendations include extending the timeline to five years, reevaluating use of the SAT as the high school assessment, dropping the requirement that schools must replace the principal and encouraging states to provide more direction and targeted technical assistance to school districts. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Maine
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: American Recovery and Reinvestment Act 2009