All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Loucrecia Collins

Advisory Committee Members

Evelyn Nettles

Gary Peters

Boyd Rogan

Charles Willis, Jr

Document Type

Dissertation

Date of Award

2016

Degree Name by School

Doctor of Education (EdD) School of Education

Abstract

The purpose of this phenomenological study was to explore the perspectives of Alabama school principals’ administrative roles and experiences in implementing the Educate Alabama Teacher Evaluation System. School principals are second only to teachers in improving students’ academic achievement. In many cases, policy makers have made student performance a central aspect of teacher evaluation (Donaldson, 2012; Everson, Feinauer, & Sudweeks, 2013). Principals are faced with reflecting on practices that impact teaching behaviors and student achievement. In 2009, the Alabama Department of Education developed the Educate Alabama Teacher Evaluation System as a formative assessment tool to guide teacher’s professional growth and learning. This qualitative study enabled the researcher to explore and gather rich descriptions of principal perspectives of their administrative roles and experiences in implementing the Educate Alabama Teacher Evaluation System. Data for this study were collected through semi-structured, in-depth interviews of participants. Study participants included three elementary school principals, three middle school principals, and three high school principals, representing rural, suburban, and urban school districts from four school districts in the state of Alabama. This study was in full compliance with Institutional Review Board guidelines. Participants signed informed consent forms and granted permission to participate in the study. After careful analysis of the data, the following five themes emerged: (a) roles and responsibilities, (b) purpose of teacher evaluation, (c) barriers, (d), efficacy/dispositions, and (e) collaboration. This study of the perspectives of school principals’ administrative roles and responsibilities may benefit schools, school districts, boards of education, and institutions of higher learning. Exploring the themes and perspectives of participants in this study may provide principals with insights regarding their own evaluation processes and practices. Study findings highlight the importance of providing principals with effective preparation and support in implementing teacher evaluations.

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