Date of Award

1996

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education

School

School of Education

Program

Leadership EdD

First Advisor

William H. Green

Second Advisor

James A. Tucker

Third Advisor

Paul S. Brantley

Abstract

Problem. Leadership at the superintendent level is paramount in the process of change in Seventh-day Adventist schools. The superintendent/education director of state-sized districts, known as conferences, is responsible for staff development programs. How a superintendent performs his or her duties in the area of staff development is the focus of this study.

Purpose. The purpose of this study is to describe staff development programs of two Seventh-day Adventist districts who have a reputation for being "active" in promoting staff development among their teachers. I wanted to know what the superintendents of these districts were doing in this "active" mode of staff development. This study is intended to provide data for other districts to follow similar paths of staff development.

Method. Two conferences/districts in North America were identified as being exemplary in terms of their staff development programs. Using a case study approach, the district programs were analyzed utilizing interviews, observations, surveys, documents, and records. A quantitative analysis of existing survey data (Profile '95) was compared with findings from the qualitative portions of the study.

Results. Several recurring motifs emerged in the area of staff development within the two exemplary Seventh-day Adventist school districts: (1) the superintendents of these districts have a clear sense of organizational vision and values, (2) the superintendents actively promote innovative practices to be used in staff development, and (3) the superintendents challenge their teachers to assess and revise their own actions in order to improve the likelihood of success for their students.

I discovered that these two exemplary school districts incorporate the following characteristics in their staff-development program: (1) a supportive, cooperative climate in the schools and district, (2) adequate resources provided by the superintendents, (3) implementation of the Joyce and Showers Training Model, (4) time during the school day for collaboration, and (5) realistic goals set by the district.

Subject Area

Elementary school teachers--In-service training, Seventh-day Adventist elementary schools

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