You are here

Evaluating critical initiatives related to climate at a high-poverty middle school

Download pdf | Full Screen View

Summary:
McMillan Public Schools (MPS) is a public school system in the southeastern part of the United States that serves approximately 28,000 students. Gregory Middle School (GMS) is one of 52 schools within MPS that serves 985 students. I used MPS and GMS as pseudonyms to anonymize the school system and school. In July 2019, I was appointed as the principal of GMS, and I quickly implemented critical initiatives related to the climate. School climate is defined as the prevailing atmosphere within the school, which encompasses physical, academic, and social dimensions (McGiboney, 2016). Based on data from the 2018-2019 school term, it was clear that the school's climate required immediate attention. All available data sources were reviewed, including student discipline reports (MPS, 2020a), stakeholder surveys (Cognia, 2019), and the school report card (State Department of Education, 2019). Each area of concern contributed to a negative school climate and created an environment that was not conducive for teaching and learning. The leadership team implemented critical initiatives in the areas of (a) human resources, (b) student discipline, (c) student safety, (d) school operations, and (e) school facilities. This program evaluation identified (a) the strengths, (b) the weaknesses, (c) the opportunities, and (d) the threats (SWOT) of the critical initiatives implemented at GMS related to the school's climate during the 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 school terms. After conducting a literature review, I adopted the learning organization evaluation (LOE) conceptual framework paired with SWOT analysis, which provided a formal structure for conducting my program evaluation. The LOE is composed of four major steps, including (a) focusing the evaluative inquiry, (b) carrying out the inquiry, (c) implementing inquiry activities, and (d) applying learning (Preskill & Torres, 1999). Collaborative learning and evaluative inquiry guide the LOE conceptual framework. The LOE model facilitates success for organizations that wish to study internal processes or procedures. The LOE model is a systematic series of steps that should be followed when conducting a program evaluation (Preskill & Torres, 1999). I paired the LOE with a convergent parallel design (Creswell & Plano Clark, 2018). Next, I invited the current faculty and staff employed during the 2019-2020 school term to participate in the program evaluation. A coinvestigator conducted the qualitative focus group interviews on two separate occasions. The coinvestigator ensured employee anonymity. Twenty-one faculty and staff members participated in the focus group interviews. I utilized deductive content analysis to analyze the focus group interviews. Additionally, I distributed the quantitative research instruments via Qualtrics, and I received 31 responses. The small sample size was a limitation. As a result, inferential statistics were not possible. Because qualitative and quantitative research represent data differently, I developed joint display matrices to merge the information from both data sources. To sufficiently answer the evaluation questions, I created four main categories based on the (a) strengths, (b) weaknesses, (c) opportunities, and (d) threats of the critical initiatives related to the change in the school's climate. Based on each main category, I created categories in alignment with the definition of school climate. Despite the recent improvement in the climate of the school, it remains an area of concern. While I noted improvement in many areas, the results revealed a need for further intervention in some areas. To further school improvement efforts, I developed a continuous improvement plan (CIP) based on the results of the SWOT analysis. The CIP will include critical initiatives for each area in order to facilitate success. I will communicate the results to the faculty and staff of GMS and school system administrators in a series of future round table discussions and professional development sessions.
Title: Evaluating critical initiatives related to climate at a high-poverty middle school.
35 views
7 downloads
Name(s): Taylor, Douglas Anthony, author.
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Bibliography
Text-txt
Academic Theses.
Dissertations, Academic
Academic Theses.
Electronic Thesis Or Dissertation.
Issuance: monographic
Date Created: 2021
Other Date: 2021.
Publisher: University of West Florida,
Place of Publication: [Pensacola, Florida] :
Physical Form: electronic resource
Extent: 1 online resource (ix, 244 leaves : illustrations)
Language(s): eng
Summary: McMillan Public Schools (MPS) is a public school system in the southeastern part of the United States that serves approximately 28,000 students. Gregory Middle School (GMS) is one of 52 schools within MPS that serves 985 students. I used MPS and GMS as pseudonyms to anonymize the school system and school. In July 2019, I was appointed as the principal of GMS, and I quickly implemented critical initiatives related to the climate. School climate is defined as the prevailing atmosphere within the school, which encompasses physical, academic, and social dimensions (McGiboney, 2016). Based on data from the 2018-2019 school term, it was clear that the school's climate required immediate attention. All available data sources were reviewed, including student discipline reports (MPS, 2020a), stakeholder surveys (Cognia, 2019), and the school report card (State Department of Education, 2019). Each area of concern contributed to a negative school climate and created an environment that was not conducive for teaching and learning. The leadership team implemented critical initiatives in the areas of (a) human resources, (b) student discipline, (c) student safety, (d) school operations, and (e) school facilities. This program evaluation identified (a) the strengths, (b) the weaknesses, (c) the opportunities, and (d) the threats (SWOT) of the critical initiatives implemented at GMS related to the school's climate during the 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 school terms. After conducting a literature review, I adopted the learning organization evaluation (LOE) conceptual framework paired with SWOT analysis, which provided a formal structure for conducting my program evaluation. The LOE is composed of four major steps, including (a) focusing the evaluative inquiry, (b) carrying out the inquiry, (c) implementing inquiry activities, and (d) applying learning (Preskill & Torres, 1999). Collaborative learning and evaluative inquiry guide the LOE conceptual framework. The LOE model facilitates success for organizations that wish to study internal processes or procedures. The LOE model is a systematic series of steps that should be followed when conducting a program evaluation (Preskill & Torres, 1999). I paired the LOE with a convergent parallel design (Creswell & Plano Clark, 2018). Next, I invited the current faculty and staff employed during the 2019-2020 school term to participate in the program evaluation. A coinvestigator conducted the qualitative focus group interviews on two separate occasions. The coinvestigator ensured employee anonymity. Twenty-one faculty and staff members participated in the focus group interviews. I utilized deductive content analysis to analyze the focus group interviews. Additionally, I distributed the quantitative research instruments via Qualtrics, and I received 31 responses. The small sample size was a limitation. As a result, inferential statistics were not possible. Because qualitative and quantitative research represent data differently, I developed joint display matrices to merge the information from both data sources. To sufficiently answer the evaluation questions, I created four main categories based on the (a) strengths, (b) weaknesses, (c) opportunities, and (d) threats of the critical initiatives related to the change in the school's climate. Based on each main category, I created categories in alignment with the definition of school climate. Despite the recent improvement in the climate of the school, it remains an area of concern. While I noted improvement in many areas, the results revealed a need for further intervention in some areas. To further school improvement efforts, I developed a continuous improvement plan (CIP) based on the results of the SWOT analysis. The CIP will include critical initiatives for each area in order to facilitate success. I will communicate the results to the faculty and staff of GMS and school system administrators in a series of future round table discussions and professional development sessions.
Identifier: 1298604390 (oclc), WFE0000791 (IID)
Note(s): by Douglas Anthony Taylor.
College of Education and Professional Studies ; Department of Teacher Education and Educational Leadership
Dissertation (Ed.D.) University of West Florida 2021
Includes bibliographical references.
Also available in print.
Subject(s): University of West Florida
University of West Florida.
Middle school students -- Economic conditions -- Research
Library Classification: LD1807.F62j 2021 T395
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/uwf/fd/WFE0000791
Use and Reproduction: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC-EDU/1.0/
Host Institution: UWF
Other Format: Evaluating critical initiatives related to climate at a high-poverty middle school. (Print version:)
(OCoLC)1298604398

In Collections