Award Date

12-2009

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

Educational Leadership

First Committee Member

Gene E. Hall, Chair

Second Committee Member

Robert Ackerman

Third Committee Member

James Hager

Graduate Faculty Representative

LeAnn Putney

Number of Pages

233

Abstract

As the 2013-2014 school year approaches, more and more schools across the United States are finding it problematic to meet the annual measurable objective of 100 percent of the school's population meeting its adequate yearly progress (AYP) target, as prescribed by the federal No Child Left Behind (NCLB) legislation of 2002. Pursuant to NCLB, schools are required to meet the (defined) academic needs of all demographic populations within the school, and to ensure that all students are on grade level.

The purpose of this study was to explore first-hand the perceptions, insights and strategies comprising the implementation of a major restructuring plan, and how that restructuring plan affected the school, the teachers, the students, and the school governance on the campus of a middle school in the southwest United States. The study analyzed the restructuring of the school along with the replacement of its administration and staff two years prior to the NCLB time frame requirement.

A naturalistic inquiry approach was selected for this research because it allowed for an in-depth exploration of how and why a school was restructured. Data were collected during the 2008-2009 school year using a variety of data collection methods, which included observation, interviews, and document review. The participants of the study consisted of new teachers to the school, rehired teachers, not-rehired teachers, and others, which consisted primarily of non-teaching personnel and administration.

Despite claims by district administration, the school was not restructured, it was reconstituted. The reconstitution was used to rid the school of mostly core subject teachers without strict regard to individual abilities or efforts towards offering academic improvement. Discipline was a major unresolved issue on campus and district communication was virtually non-existent. The district's intent to restructure the school into a Professional Development School was superficial and excluded all stakeholders. And because the school was restructured two years before it was required to do so, and then the school was subsequently unable to make AYP with the then new teaching staff, the school had to plan for restructuring all over again during the 2009-2010 school year.

Based on the findings of the study, the researcher strongly recommends that before restructuring is considered, it must be well planned, widely communicated, and input should be sought from all stakeholders. In addition, a complete re-evaluation of the school's situation, the teachers and administrators abilities, and the climate should be conducted, thereby mitigating the creation of a negative and hostile environment.

Keywords

Competency-based education; Education; Educational accountability; Middle school education; School management and organization

Disciplines

Education | Educational Administration and Supervision | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Elementary and Middle and Secondary Education Administration

Language

English