School Effectiveness and School Improvement

Published by Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Online ISSN: 0924-3453
Publications
Summary of studies included in the meta-analysis.
Parameter estimates and (standard errors) for the second basic meta-regression model: differential effects specified.
Added-up estimates from Meta-regression I and II; number of contributed estimates per combination from Meta-regression II.
Article
This study reports a meta-analysis on the effects of ethnic minority share in school on achievement test scores. Best evidence from the studies that have appeared thus far on this topic shows that these compositional effects appear small in general, but may be larger when the ethnic minority group is African Americans in the USA, than when the minority group consists of immigrants. A high share of students from an ethnic minority group seems to affect the achievement from students belonging to the same ethnic group more, than the achievement of students belonging to the ethnic majority or to other ethnic minority groups. Effects of the share of immigrants on test scores of ethnic majority students even seem to be close to zero. Several robustness checks confirm our results. The review concludes with a discussion of implications for research and policy practice.
 
Article
As attention turns from restructuring to school design as a means of securing school improvement, a bewildering range of design programmes/models are available. How are schools to make informed choices about their relative merits? This article suggests a classification, based on 10 criteria, by which to categorize their features, and to draw comparisons between them. The particular design adopted by the case school is described and analysed in terms of the classificatory framework, and its implementation by the perspective of the school leader/change agent. Finally, conclusions are drawn about the usefulness of the framework as a heuristic “device” for characterizing school design models (SDM) and their implementation. It is argued that refinement of the classificatory framework would result from similar case studies and the perspectives of others – besides the school leader/change agent – involved in their implementation.
 
Article
This article presents the key findings and discusses the implications of a major study that explored the relationship between academic achievement and the inclusion of pupils with special educational needs (SEN) in mainstream schools in England. It is based on a statistical analysis of nationally held data on all pupils in England that is collected at the end of each of the 4 key stages, when pupils are aged 7, 11, 14, and 16. The analysis considered the relationship between academic achievement and inclusivity having controlled for a range of other variables. Findings indicate that there is no relationship between academic achievement and inclusion at the local authority (LA) level while there is a small but, for all practical purposes, insubstantial relationship at the school level. In addition, there is also a large degree of variation at the school level, suggesting strongly that there are other factors within a school's make up, rather than its degree of inclusivity, that impact on the average academic achievements of its pupils. The overall conclusion, therefore, is that mainstream schools need not be concerned about the potentially negative impact on the overall academic achievements of their pupils of including pupils with SEN in their schools.
 
Article
In this article, we report results of a survey of 1,397 teachers in 26 primary and 17 secondary schools in England as part of the Learning How to Learn project. We consider how school self-evaluation can be understood within an organisational learning frame. Factor analysis of teachers' responses helped us identify 4 dimensions of organisational learning approaches to school leadership and management. Comparisons were made between teachers' perceptions of school leadership and management practices and the values they placed on those practices. We discuss the usefulness of analysing values-practice gaps for furthering understanding of organisational learning approaches to school leadership and management. Analysis of gaps between teachers' values and practices reveals significant inconsistencies between perceptions of current practices and values across a broad spectrum of school leadership and management practices. Perceptions of practice were significantly behind the values that teachers place on each of the 4 dimensions of practice.
 
Article
Several factors in the H. J. Walberg Educational Productivity Model, which assumes that 9 factors affect academic achievement, were examined with a limited sample of 1st-year students in the University of Groningen. Information concerning 8 of these factors - grades, motivation, age, prior achievement, home environment, support from peers, classroom environment, quality of instruction, and quantity of instruction - was collected through the departmental administration, self-report questionnaires, rating questionnaires, and through paper sources. A multilevel analysis showed that the model with 8 productivity factors explained 23% of the variance found in achievement, as well as the variables prior achievement and expectancy, the classroom environment, the quality of assessment, and the quantity of instruction affected achievement.
 
Results for the random-intercept growth curve models, without and with effects of background characteristics.
Results for the random intercept and random slopes growth curve model.
Variances, reliability coefficients, and precision weights for all four mathematics tests.
Article
Summer learning studies have been set up to investigate the evolution of initial group differences in academic achievement, for example, between low- and high-socioeconomic status (SES) children. Moreover, this approach has been used to demonstrate the absolute effect of going to school on children's learning. In the present study, we used multilevel piecewise linear growth modeling to analyze growth in mathematics skills throughout kindergarten and 1st grade. First, we added to the evidence of an absolute schooling effect by demonstrating that average learning rates were faster during both school years than during the intervening summer vacation. Second, mathematics achievement gaps between children from different socioeconomic, ethnic, and linguistic backgrounds were found to remain stable during kindergarten and the summer vacation. During 1st grade, however, the ethnic and linguistic achievement gaps disappeared, whereas the SES achievement gap remained unchanged. Finally, we found no evidence for school-level variation in summer learning rates.
 
Article
Incl. bibl., abstract There is still little consensus on whether and how teaching is affected by small and large classes, especially in the case of students in the later primary years. This study investigated effects of class size on teaching of pupils aged 7 - 11 years. We used a multimethod approach, integrating qualitative information from teachers' end-of-year accounts and data from case studies with quantitative information from systematic observations. Results showed that there was more individual attention in smaller classes, a more active role for pupils, and beneficial effects on the quality of teaching. It is suggested that teachers in both large and small classes need to develop strategies for more individual attention but also recognize the benefits of other forms of learning, for example, group work.
 
Article
At the 10th International Congress for School Effectiveness and School Improvement, participants noted progress in effectiveness research regarding development of outcome measures, size effects, measures of educational processes, and variables contributing to effectiveness. School-improvement research has focused on schools' status changes, implementation strategies, macrolevel policy techniques, financial factors, and the "ownership" ethos. (MLH)
 
Article
In the scientific literature, the debate around the school and class effect is polarized, because the variance between schools and classes is explained either by school and class process or by group composition. The first aim of this article is to shed light on this debate and move beyond it by reviewing qualitative and quantitative studies showing how managerial and pedagogical process are connected to group composition. After that, a technique of models rotation is applied to the TIMSS 2003 dataset of 4 OECD countries to estimate the net effect of group composition, the net effect of class process, and the joint effect of these 2 dimensions. These 4 education systems (Belgium Flemish, England, The Netherlands, and the United States of America) have been selected because they are characterized by a strong between-classes variance. The results suggest that the joint effect of group composition and class processes, like class climate, explains a significant part of the between-class variance. The implications of these results for educational effectiveness research (EER) are discussed.
 
Article
Starting from developments at the turn of the century, this article describes how events in the early years of the new millennium lead to quite different outcomes for schools. Decisions in the next 5 years will determine which shall prevail. Scenarios are tested against a view of 'world class schools' that calls for a balance of enduring values in the classical formulation of liberty, equality and fraternity, the realisation of which depends on two contemporary values of efficiency and economic growth. Domains for leadership to 2020 and beyond are described. Peter Drucker's challenge to see 'abandonment' as an aspect of leadership is taken up.
 
Article
Assesses whether second-level schools in Ireland are equally effective regarding examination performance, absenteeism, and potential dropouts, using multivariate analyses of data from 15- and 16-year-olds in 116 schools. Absenteeism and potential dropout rates are lower in schools that enhance pupils' academic progress. (Contains 22 references.) (MLH)
 
Article
During the last decades numerous studies have been conducted with the aim of finding predictors of an effective school measured in terms of the average level of the students' academic achievement. Few of these studies have examined how the students' perception of their work environment at school influences their academic achievement. The present article applies theory and findings from research on the adult work environment to the daily school life of children and adolescents. The analyses are based on self-reported data from the "Health Behaviour in School-aged Children Survey" (the HBSC study), using data from countries in both Eastern and Western Europe. Data from 11, 13 and 15 year old students in Finland, Latvia, Norway and Slovakia are used. The findings suggest that the most important psychosocial school setting predictors of students' perception of their academic achievement are that they feel satisfied with school, that they feel the teachers do not expect too much of them, and that they have a good relationship with their fellow students. The findings imply that interventions which enhance the students satisfaction with school are likely to improve their achievement as well.
 
Article
This article aims to explain the role principals play in the variation in academic achievement between secondary schools in Hong Kong. The article draws on survey data from 179 key staff and 2,037 students from 42 schools. The study uses 2 analytical approaches. First, it employs classification and regression tree analysis (CART). This was used to sort out the most significant leadership practices associated with student achievement. Second, based on first-stage analysis, the study further explores the effects of leadership practices on academic achievement using hierarchical linear modelling (HLM). Results indicate that transparent and efficient communication structures as managed by principals explained approximately 12% of between-schools variation in academic achievement. Leadership practices related to quality assurance and accountability and resource management also contributed to explaining between-schools variation in academic achievement, yet they had negative effects on student achievement. Implications for research and practice are discussed.
 
Article
This study analyses the educational progress of an entire national cohort of over 530,000 pupils in England between age 7 in 2000 and age 11 in 2004. The results show that Black Caribbean boys not entitled to free school meals, and particularly the more able pupils, made significantly less progress than their White British peers. There is no evidence that the gap results from Black Caribbean pupils attending less effective schools. There is also no evidence of differential effectiveness in relation to ethnic group; schools that were strong in facilitating the progress of White British pupils were equally strong in facilitating the progress of Black Caribbean pupils. There was some evidence of differential school effectiveness by pupil prior achievement, gender and poverty, but the absolute size of the effects were small. The results suggest the poor progress of Black Caribbean pupils reflects a systemic issue rather than the influence of a small number of ‘low quality’ schools.
 
Article
Educational leadership can be defined as the ability of a principal to initiate school improvement, to create a learning-oriented educational climate, and to stimulate and supervise teachers in such a way that the latter may execute their tasks as effectively as possible. In 1989, 1993, and 1998, teacher perceptions of educational leadership of principals in Dutch elementary education were evaluated by means of a Rasch-scale. It turned out that the educational leadership of Dutch principals has grown considerably. In both 1989 and 1993 the effect of educational leadership on pupil achievement was investigated. While in 1989 no significant relationship was found, the results of 1993 show a significant relationship between educational leadership and average pupil achievement over 3 successive years corrected for school environment.
 
Reading achievement, learning, and impact, as measured on a 92-point scale.
Measurement error variance on four reading tests and four mathematics tests.
Mathematics achievement, learning, and impact, as measured on a 64-point scale.
Reading: reliability of achievement, learning, and impact.
Article
When evaluating schools' effectiveness, is it better to use absolute "achievement levels" or to use "learning rates" over a 9- or 12-month period? Or is it better to use a new measure, seasonal "impact", which is defined as the acceleration in learning rates that occurs when students finish summer vacation and start the school year? Answering this question involves a tradeoff between validity and reliability, since unfortunately the most reliable measure (achievement) is the least-valid measure as well. In this paper, we evaluate the tradeoff using a simple covariance-structure model. The results suggest that, when achievement is compared to learning and impact, reliability is a minor issue compared to validity. Although achievement is more reliable than learning or impact, achievement's advantage in reliability is much smaller than its disadvantage in validity. Our findings support the view that reliability is not a sufficient reason to evaluate schools using achievement levels. (Contains 10 notes, 2 tables and 2 figures.)
 
Characteristics of the Classrooms, the Schools and the Environment according to the Different Samples of Teachers.
HLM Models Explaining French Achievement.
HLM models Explaining Mathematics Achievement.
Chi square tables for models 0 to 3.
Article
This investigation examines the effects of teachers' training on pupils' achievement in French and mathematics. The aim of the research is to compare the effectiveness of three samples of elementary school teachers with different levels of experience and training. Using a multilevel model, the results demonstrate that training enhances the effectiveness of novice teachers. In addition, experience was also found to have a positive effect. Neither training nor experience have a significant effect on equity, defined as the capacity of reducing the initial gap between high and low achieving pupils.
 
Article
Although homework is generally believed to be an important supplement to in-school learning, research has not yet fully clarified the relationship between homework and achievement. This cross-cultural study analyzed the relationship between homework time and mathematics achievement drawing on data from 231,759 students in 9,791 schools and 40 countries who participated in the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2003. Multilevel analyses found a positive association between school-average homework time and mathematics achievement in almost all countries, but the size of the association decreased considerably once socioeconomic background and school track were controlled. At the student level, no clear-cut relationship was established between homework time and achievement across the 40 countries. The results highlight the need to use multilevel analyses and to control for confounding variables in homework research.
 
Article
There is a general doubt on whether teacher evaluation can contribute to teachers’ professional development. Recently, standards-based teacher evaluation has been introduced in many countries to improve teaching practice. This study wants to investigate which teacher evaluation procedural, leadership, and teacher characteristics can stimulate teachers’ feedback utility perceptions and professional learning activities in the context of teacher evaluation. Data were collected in 32 secondary schools from 298 teachers and 32 school leaders, both quantitatively and qualitatively. We put forward a research model which is investigated through path analysis. Results nurture optimism about teacher evaluation indicating that teacher evaluation can stimulate teachers to undertake professional learning activities when they perceive feedback as useful. The important role of the school leader (through both instructional and transformational leadership) is stressed. Teacher participation and teacher collaboration also have a positive influence on teacher evaluation and its outcomes.
 
Article
School reform strategies involving restructuring require that administrators redefine their roles. Most of the research in this area has emphasized new rather than veteran administrators. However, if these reform strategies are to be implemented, school administrators at mid‐career stages will need to change their conceptions of the role.This article identifies and examines literature concerning the major issues of socialization to a role conception, including definitions, sources, and socialization mechanisms for changing conceptions of the role. The article also presents a research agenda based on this theoretical examination that delineates research questions, relevant variables, and possible findings regarding changing role conceptions. The research agenda focuses on two major strategies of educational reform: shared decision making and schools of choice.
 
Article
Institutional effectiveness indicators currently published rarely consider differential resource and cost issues. Here, after reviewing some issues surrounding the quality of indicators, cost-effectiveness is considered. Multilevel models of cost-effectiveness are applied to a number of different types of institution in England providing courses of instruction in the General Certificate of Education at Advanced Level. Variation between teaching groups is recognised as important. It is concluded that different impressions may be gained of institution's relative effectiveness when cost considerations are combined with outcome measures. Data needs for evaluations of cost-effectiveness are also considered.
 
Article
This article explores the issue of whether lists of characteristics constituting the effective school are universally valid. It argues that the effectiveness or otherwise of schools must be understood contextually as there are significant differences between both the material and ideological contexts of schooling. The article uses the example of South Africa to demonstrate the difficulties in judging schools in one context using criteria developed in another. Three examples of schools that can be considered effective in the context of the new South Africa are described and discussed and the article concludes by arguing that education for peace and democracy is an essential feature of school effectiveness in South Africa.
 
Article
Incl. bibl., abstract Researchers in the area of educational effectiveness should attempt to develop a new theoretical framework. A critical analysis of the current models of educational effectiveness research is provided and reveals that a dynamic model of effectiveness must: (a) be multilevel in nature, (b) be based on the assumption that the relation of some effectiveness factors with achievement may be curvilinear, (c) illustrate the dimensions upon which the measurement of each effectiveness factor should be based, and (d) define relations among the effectiveness factors. In principle, each factor that refers to the classroom, school, and system, can be measured by taking into account five dimensions: frequency, focus, stage, quality, and differentiation. Examples of measuring effectiveness factors operating at different levels using these 5 dimensions are given. More attention in describing in detail factors associated with teacher behaviour in the classroom is given, since this is seen as the starting point for the development and the testing of the dynamic model. Finally, suggestions for the next steps in the development of other parts of the model are provided.
 
Article
The purpose of this paper is to identify school effects on student performance for tertiary entrance in Australia, aking into account student-level predictors using lonngitudinal data from the 2003 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) study. It finds that aspects of schooling, such as positive attitudes to school and disciplinary climate, affect student performance at the student level but not generally at the school level. The socioeconomic context of schools has no effect on student performance when taking into account schools' academic context. Apart from academic context, teacher shortage, academic press, and teacher efficacy were the only school factors that had positive significant effects on student performance. The policy implications are that school-based policies are unlikely to improve performance or promote equity, but, instead, policies should focus more on students falling behind, who are found across the school system, not limited to a small proportion of schools with particular characteristics.
 
Comparison of Teachers' and Principals' PIMRS Subscale Ratings in Thailand
Comparison of Principal Profiles by TeachersAE Mean Ratings and Rankings: Thailand, U.S., and Malaysia
Article
While research in Western societies has found that principal leadership is usually a necessary condition for school improvement, there remains a dearth of research on how principals provide instructional leadership in developing countries. This study sought to address this need by adapting the PIMRS (Hallinger, 1984a), an instrument designed to assess principal instructional leadership. The PIMRS was translated and administered to 10 secondary school principals in northern Thailand. Findings from this initial study indicate that the PIMRS‐Thai Form appears to provide data on the instructional leadership of secondary school principals that meet or exceed common research standards of reliability and validity. Researchers and practitioners interested in assessing principal instructional leadership in Thai schools can proceed to use the PIMRS‐Thai Form with a reasonable degree of confidence that it will yield accurate information on job performance in this domain.Consistent with past studies, the principals in this study tended to rate themselves higher in their self‐assessments than did their teachers (Hallinger & Murphy, 1985; O'Day, 1983). Current and past data suggest that greater credence be given to the teacher assessments. With this in mind, the results indicate that this sample of secondary school principals from northern Thailand exercised a low to moderate level of instructional leadership activity. Assessments of secondary school principals using the PIMRS in the United States (Haack, 1991), Malaysia (Saavedra, 1987), Canada (Jones, 1987) have all yielded significantly higher scores when compared with this Thai sample.
 
Article
It is often assumed that schools themselves play an important role in students not completing school. However, the literature is inconsistent on what school characteristics influence school leaving, and identified school effects may be spurious due to the absence, or poor measurement, of appropriate individual-level influences. The importance of schools on school leaving is examined in the Australian context using longitudinal data based on the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)'s 2003 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) study, which includes more comprehensive measures of socioeconomic background and student achievement than available previously. The strongest influence on school leaving was student performance in the PISA tests. Although there were sizable differences between schools in the proportion of school leavers, only a small proportion of schools showed significantly higher or lower levels of school leaving when individual-level influences were taken into account. The implications for policies on school leaving are discussed.
 
, Number of Items and a Typical Item for the QTI-Scales,
Reliability, Multilevel X and Cronbach's a (Class Level) of the QTI.
Intraclass Correlations of the QTI-Scales.
Factor Loadings for the Unequally Spaced Circumplex Model.
Sample Characteristics for Physics and EFL.
Article
In this study, the effectiveness of secondary education teachers' interpersonal behaviour is investigated by analysing data from 2 samples: a study on 45 Physics teachers and their 3rd-year classes and a study on 32 English as a Foreign Language (EFl.) teachers and their 3rd-year classes. Teacher interpersonal behaviour was studied by means of students' perceptions of this behaviour, collected with the Questionnaire on Teacher Interaction (QTI). These perceptions include 2 important dimensions: Influence and Proximity. Results of multilevel analyses with various covariates indicated that Influence and Proximity were positively related to both cognitive and affective outcomes. Interpersonal behaviour explained up to more than half of the variance in student outcomes at the teacher-class level. The outcomes suggest that interpersonal behaviour as perceived by students may be an important variable for educational effectiveness researchers.
 
Article
The feelings (self-concepts and attitudes) toward maths, reading and school of 21,000 seven-year-olds in England were investigated using multi-variate multi-level models. The most important explanatory variables were the teacher and the academic level of the pupils supporting the view that it is important to track attitudes in any monitoring system. Data are presented to support the Big Fish in a Little Pond hypothesis and estimates were also made of importance of sex, age, home background and first language to the attitudes of pupils in school.
 
Article
Reviews five books on instructional improvement: "The Effective Classroom" (Bert Creemers); "Universal Teaching Strategies" (H.J. Freiberg); "Changing Teachers, Changing Times" (A. Hargreaves); "Horace's Hope" (Theodore Sizer); and "Education for All" (Robert Slavin). Each book stresses the importance of teachers' classroom efforts and connections between instructional and learning effectiveness. (12 references) (MLH)
 
Article
This article looks at the current state of play in research into effective schools in the developing world and seeks to identify some of the underlying concerns arising from this work. School effectiveness research in developing countries will be contrasted with that within the developed world, and will be analysed in the context of the work of donor agencies and of the demands made by structural adjustment policies. A view of 'school effectiveness' which is contextually-related is posited, stressing the need to examine whether an examination of the effectiveness of schools should be considered in terms of the perceptions of different stakeholders, rather than in relation to an 'objective' checklist derived from research in a different cultural context, and often done years earlier.
 
Article
Most research on bullying in schools has focussed on characteristics of bullies or victims, and their families. Relatively little has investigated the school's contribution to pupil bullying. Information was obtained from teachers in 22 Norwegian primary schools on bullying and 3 aspects of professional culture. The school highest in bullying had significantly worse scores on all professional culture variables than the school lowest on bullying. The results are discussed with reference to the possibility that improvement in professional culture may contribute to less bullying and overall improvement in behaviour. In turn, these may be prerequisites for improvement in academic standards.
 
General framework of instructional leadership (Dwyer et al., 1987; Dwyer et al., 1985) 
Standardized total effects of exogenous variables on endogenous variables
Variables and their predicted relationships included in the secondary analysis 
Standardized total effects of endogenous variables on endogenous variables
Second model secondary analysis. Chi-square
Article
Incl. bibl., abstract. This study aims to contribute to a better understanding of the antecedents and effects of educational leadership, and of the influence of the principal's leadership on intervening and outcome variables. A path analysis was conducted to test and validate a causal model. The results show no direct or indirect effects of educational leadership on student commitment; instead a reciprocal relationship was found between student commitment and strategic leadership. A range of antecedent variables appears to have more effects on the school culture than educational leadership has. Finally, the principal's vision has a substantial impact on his or her educational leadership behaviours. The findings suggest the importance of cognitive processes in order to understand the complex chain of variables through which principals have an impact on school effectiveness and school improvement. The results also underline the importance of conceptualizing leadership from a contingency approach.
 
Summary of Inter-correlations, Means, and Standard Deviations for Variables 
Article
The present study examines from the contingency opportunities perspective the influence of contextual factors on principals’ learning-centered leadership using HLM. Participants were 18,641 school principals from 73 jurisdictions who participated in the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) 2009. Results showed that principals were able to differentiate strategic (academic focus) from operational (involvement) leadership. The second finding pertained to principals shifting their leadership priorities when confronted with student academic failure and when leading larger schools. The third finding was the increase in both aspects of principals’ leadership in the face of parental academic pressure. The fourth finding was the negative impact of shortage of information technology resources on involvement. The last finding was that the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) variable moderated the influence of parental academic pressure on academic focus, and that principals in OECD jurisdictions reported more involvement than those in non-OECD jurisdictions. The present study affirms principals’ behaviors as agentic responses to environmental contingencies.
 
Article
Incl. bibl., abstract This article outlines a research and development programme that focused on a group of 8 secondary schools in England. 1 The schools in this study were considered to be facing exceptionally challenging circumstances characterised by high levels of socioeconomic disadvantage and deprivation. They were also schools considered to be seriously underperforming and in need of intensive improvement and support strategies. The article outlines the background, nature, and scope of the improvement programme designed for this group of schools, collectively known as the "OCTET" group. It reflects upon the emerging evidence about improving schools in the most difficult circumstances and argues that more context-specific programmes of intervention are required if the goal of raising performance in such schools is to be realised.
 
Article
The Chilean education system is an emblematic case of school management privatization, with the majority of schools operating under government funding, but private administration. This article addresses the incidence of this dimension on school leadership, showing the differences and continuities established among primary school principals in the subsidized private and municipal sectors. The conclusion is that private school administrators do not recruit principals on a competitive basis, as a result of which these principals do not present a more developed professional profile, and that merely having more duties for executing the principal position – as happens in subsidized private schools – is not enough for an effective development of practices evidencing improved school leadership. These conclusions challenge the statement frequently expressed, but lacking sufficient empirical evidence, that the greater autonomy in school management encompassed by privatization will positively impact on school leadership and, therefore, on educational improvement.
 
Article
Incl. bibl., abstract This article examines the effects of transformational and transactional leadership on teachers' job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and organizational citizenship behavior in the context of schools in a specific developing country context, that of Tanzania. It does so by testing a model of such effects using a set of data collected from a sample of Tanzanian primary school teachers. Regression analyses show transformational leadership dimensions to have strong effects on teachers' job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and organizational citizenship behavior. Transformational leadership had significant add-on effects to transactional leadership in prediction of job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and organizational citizenship behavior. Job satisfaction appears to be a mediator of the effects of transformational leadership on teachers' organizational commitment and organizational citizenship behavior. Implications and directions for future research are discussed.
 
Article
In this study, the implementation effects of a program for the training of coaching skills to Dutch primary school principals are described. Coaching is a form of in‐class support intended to provide teachers with feedback on their own functioning, and thereby to stimulate self‐reflection and self‐analysis in order to improve instructional effectiveness. To assist school principals in their attempts to coach teachers, a training program was designed and evaluated. Based on the pre‐ and post‐training ratings of coaching conferences, a significant treatment effect was found for the coaching skills concerned with the development of autonomy (empowerment), feedback, and agreement on classroom observational goals. The pre‐ and post‐training ratings from the coached teachers themselves showed a significant treatment effect for the coaching skills concerned with the development of improvement plans. Although the training provided for the school principals was directed at the coaching functions of consulting and confronting, the majority of the school principals conducted coaching conferences that emphasized predominantly the function of consulting.
 
Formation year. 
2008 cohort. Primary schools. English. 
2008 cohort. Secondary schools. Average GCSE points scores. 
Article
This study adopted a quantitative methodology involving a matched sample of federated and non-federated schools and utilising multilevel modelling techniques to explore the impact of federations on student outcomes. The sample involves a total of 50 school districts and 264 schools. These are grouped into 122 federations; 264 comparator schools were selected to match these. The study has identified 6 broad and sometimes overlapping categories of federations. The findings suggest there is evidence of impact on overall performance, in that, while federation and comparator schools perform similarly at baseline, federation is positively related to performance in the years following federation. There is evidence to suggest that impact is strongest in performance federations. There is no relationship between federation and inspection judgements or differential impact on students from different socioeconomic settings. In conclusion, this article reflects on the findings to discuss the key implications for future research, policy, and practice.
 
Overview of the standardized total, direct and indirect relations between the independent variables, and organizational commitment and job satisfaction and fit indices.
Figures
Article
This study investigates the relation between distributed leadership, the cohesion of the leadership team, participative decision-making, context variables, and the organizational commitment and job satisfaction of teachers and teacher leaders. A questionnaire was administered to teachers and teacher leaders (n = 1770) from 46 large secondary schools. Multiple regression analyses and path analyses revealed that the study variables explained significant variance in organizational commitment. The degree of explained variance for job satisfaction was considerably lower compared to organizational commitment. Most striking was that the cohesion of the leadership team and the amount of leadership support was strongly related to organizational commitment, and indirectly to job satisfaction. Decentralization of leadership functions was weakly related to organizational commitment and job satisfaction. (Contains 4 tables and 2 figures.)
 
Article
To talk about the dissemination of research is to talk about the relationship between theory and practice. A body of empirical and conceptual knowledge has accumulated in an area known as the dissemination and utilization of scientific knowledge. Researchers and practitioners will interact at two points: as the knowledge base is transferred, and as practitioners communicate their needs to researchers. This paper centers on the dynamics regulating the process of transfer of knowledge from research centers to schools and teachers. A robust finding in the research utilization literature is that when researchers have used an approach to the dissemination of their results characterized as "sustained interactivity," the impact of the study on users and user organizations is pronounced. Basically, sustained interactivity involves multiple exchanges between researchers and potential users of that research at different phases of the study. To illustrate the dynamics of sustained interactivity on users and researchers, a recent vocational training research program in Switzerland, called "Education et Vie active," is described. (5 figures) (22 references) (MLF)
 
Article
The primary aim of this study was to investigate whether and, if so, how formal teacher competence relates to the relationship between pupil reading achievement and teachers judgements’ of pupils’ reading achievement. The data come from the Swedish participation in the Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) 2001 in Grade 3. Information was obtained from pupils (N = 5271) and teachers (N = 351). Analyses were conducted using multilevel structural equation modeling (SEM) with random slopes. Teacher competence was operationalized using multiple observed indicators and defined as a latent variable. A higher correspondence between teacher judgements and pupil reading achievement for teachers with higher competence was found. The results highlight the importance of teacher competence in assessment practice.
 
Article
This article explores the concept of compositional effects in school effect studies, their generation and some of the difficulties that arise in their interpretation. Some basic issues are addressed using data from a New Zealand study of secondary schools, and further illustration of some of the 'pitfalls' is provided from an English study of primary school performance indicators. The importance of model specification, predictor reliability, and cautious interpretation are highlighted.
 
Article
Educational effectiveness research is often criticised because of the absence of a theoretical background. In our study we started out from an educational effectiveness model which was developed on the basis of educational theories and empirical evidence. We have tested the main assumptions of the model by reanalysing a large-scale longitudinal dataset which contains elementary school data of subsequent student cohorts, their teachers and their schools. We found some expected positive effects on achievement of individual classroom and school factors in the effectiveness model but these were not stable across school subjects and student cohorts. When factors were grouped into clusters the findings remained essentially the same. To interpret the clusters we made use of the concept of consistency, which refers to a balance between factors which may enhance effectiveness. Some teachers and schools are more consistent than others, but this does not affect the achievement of their students. Cross-level interaction effects were not found. The instability of effects makes it hard to suggest changes in the model at this moment.
 
Article
In this article models and theories on effective schooling are reviewed. Modelling is based on the various disciplinary oriented approaches to educational effectiveness. As such production functions, instructional effectiveness models and integrated, multi‐level educational effectiveness models are discussed. Various conceptual and formal representations of facilitation across levels are seen as the most interesting area for further model‐driven research. In the second part of the article four organization theories are discussed, all of which are seen as specific interpretations of the rationality paradigm: rational control theory and bureaucratic structuring; contingency theory; public choice theory; and retroactive planning. A fifth theoretical perspective, chaos theory, as applied to organizational functioning, looks more like a complete anti‐thesis of rationality, but can nevertheless be related to the emergence of ordered patterns and to organizational survival. Core mechanisms or theory‐embedded principles that follow from these theories are, respectively: proactive structuring; fit; market mechanisms; the cybernetic principle; and self‐organization. Further analysis of these principles leads to the conclusion that the cybernetic principle of evaluation feedback and reinforcement is the most interesting one, both from a theoretical and practice‐oriented perspective. Throughout the article hints and suggestions are provided for future, more theory and model‐driven educational effectiveness research.
 
The relationships between the factors influencing SPFS use and effects
Article
Although there is an international trend to publish and feed back information to schools and teachers, the full complexity of improving schools through school performance feedback is not usually recognised. In this article, 'school performance feedback systems' (SPFSs) are first conceptualised, and the factors that have contributed to their popularity are analysed. Next, a framework is presented which includes the factors that are crucial for the use and impact of SPFSs. Finally, the balance sheet is drawn up for the evidence on the process, problems and impact of SPFSs, and strategies for improving schools through performance feedback are formulated.
 
Article
The Learning Consortium, a multiyear partnership among four large school districts and two higher education institutions, has been working on a new design to integrate teacher development and school development in the service of continuous educational improvement. Since 1988, the Consortium has undertaken various initiatives and programs that are discussed in this special section. (MLH)
 
Article
Initiatives to bring about improvements in schools usually involve certain teachers taking on leadership roles. Indeed it can be argued that the tasks undertaken by such individuals are important to the success or otherwise of such developments. What is it, then, that such teachers do when school improvement is successful? Furthermore, how best can external consultants assist teachers in carrying out these leadership roles? These are the issues addressed in this article. Specifically, the article examines the experiences of a small group of teachers who have taken on leadership roles in schools that have been successful in bringing about improvements in their work. Our engagement with the experiences of these teachers leads us to examine some of the complexities involved in processes of school improvement. In particular their accounts point to the significant impact of workplace culture on teacher development. As a result we conclude that those involved in leading such developments need to be sensitive to the peculiarities of each school. In other words, what is needed is an ongoing search for what works locally rather than the adoption of what seems to work elsewhere. The schools referred to in the article are all involved in a school improvement project co-ordinated by a team of tutors at the University of Cambridge Institute of Education. Consequently, before examining the work of these teachers we provide a brief outline of the project.
 
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The self-efficacy of the principal to cope with change can be an important mediator in accomplishing change and in reducing the stress levels of the principal. Moreover, the concept of self-efficacy of school principals assumes added importance in a context of restructuring and school-based management, with greater decision-making responsibilities passing to the school community. A measurement scale is presented that is specific to the self-efficacy of principals when coping with change in the context of restructuring. The psychometric properties of the scale are outlined, and its usefulness demonstrated with a series of regression equations between attributes of restructuring and principals' self-efficacy.
 
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Incl. bibl., abstract. This research provides policy-makers, researchers, and educators at all levels with a glimpse of the contextual influence on effective school improvement (ESI) in 8 European countries. What are the factors at the contextual level, particularly at the national level, which influence ESI? Are there any similarities or differences between the influences they exert on ESI in different countries? Can common traits be identified? These are the core questions this paper tries to explore. It has drawn on insights from 5 areas of research: school effectiveness; school improvement; curriculum; public choice (marketization); organization, organizational learning, and learning organization. This yields a "goal - pressure - support" conceptual framework accompanied by 10 contextual factors and 48 indicators. Given the original conceptual framework and the empirical support of 31 case studies contributed by 8 European countries, the findings of this study may have significant implications for policy, practice, school effectiveness, and school improvement.
 
Top-cited authors
Bert Creemers
  • University of Groningen
Philip Hallinger
  • Mahidol University
Leonidas Kyriakides
  • University of Cyprus
Daniel Muijs
Jan Van Damme
  • KU Leuven