Award Date

5-2010

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Special Education

Department

Special Education

First Committee Member

Sherri Strawser, Co-Chair

Second Committee Member

Eunsook Hong, Co-Chair

Third Committee Member

Tom Pierce

Fourth Committee Member

Susan Miller

Fifth Committee Member

Pamela Salazar

Number of Pages

109

Abstract

This study examined (a) the difference between special education teachers’ and administrators’ perceptions of school climate factors that influence special education teacher attrition and (b) differences among the four school climate factors perceived by school personnel. School climate was measured in professional development, collaboration, working conditions, and leadership. Participants were 29 administrators and 62 special education teachers from a large metropolitan school district in the Southwest United States. A 52 item online questionnaire was used for data collection. Special education teachers perceived school climate factors as more influential in promoting teacher attrition than did administrators. When the four school climate factors were compared for their mean differences, both administrators and teachers rated working conditions as the most influential factor of special education teacher attrition and professional development and leadership as the least influential. Finally, school personnel did not moderate the difference among the four climate factors. Both administrators and special education teachers reported school climate factors along a similar trend. iv

Keywords

Administrators; Attrition; Perceptions; School climate; Special education; Teacher retention

Disciplines

Education | Special Education and Teaching

Language

English


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