The relationship between teacher evaluation and school culture
Von Zielonka, Beverley
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This study was based upon the understanding that as important and essential as the technical and management dimensions of teacher evaluation are, efforts to address these dimensions alone are not enough to create effective teacher evaluation systems. Rather, the research and literature suggest that a third and critical dimension - school culture- and its relationship to the technical and management dimensions must be investigated and resolved to create an effective evaluation system. This study investigated this recent line of inquiry, describing and explaining the relationship between teacher evaluation and school culture. The procedures included a review of teacher evaluation documents, interviews with administrators, surveying 43 teachers, and focus group interviews with non-tenured and tenured teacher groups at an independent school in central Ohio. Interviews with the school's administration provided an explanation of the schools teacher evaluation documents. Data from the questionnaire provided information for how teachers' describe and explain 4 subcategories: (1) purposes and use of teacher evaluation information; (2) foundations and criteria used in evaluation; (3) procedures of evaluation; and (4) school culture. Focus group interviews provided further description and explanation of teacher evaluation and the culture of the school. Analysis of frequency distributions indicated the number of times each Likert-type response was obtained for the sample, non-tenured, and tenured teacher groups. Paired Sample T -tests determined the level of significance of resulting differences between non-tenured and tenured teachers for each questionnaire item. Pairwise correlation tests provided the measure of relationship between teacher evaluation and school culture for the sample, non-tenured, and tenured teacher responses. Pairwise Total Means of teacher evaluation and school culture subcategories provided an overall measure of the relationship between teacher evaluation and school culture. The results of the statistical tests support the conclusion that there is a relationship between teacher evaluation and school culture. The results also support the conclusion that, overall, the non-tenured and tenured teachers describe the relationship teacher evaluation and school culture similarly.
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