Demographic shifts in local communities, funding changes and staff contract requirements are some of the local issues and concerns that drive middle school restructuring. Restructuring of middle schools may include: changes to scheduling, course options and selection, composition of inter-disciplinary teams of teachers, the amount and use of collaborative planning time, the model of support for special needs students and the creation of specialized programs within a school. Each of these areas has implications on budgets, staffing, and students’ educational experience and involves decisions that must be made or facilitated by school administrators.
Each middle school is unique in its location, school culture, demographics, staff composition, school vision and leadership style of the administrator, yet each administrator is faced with multiple and difficult decisions. This research will begin to examine how restructuring decisions are made in the different middle schools in Coquitlam, the key factors of influence on the decision making process, and the participation of staff and parents in the decision making process. It is hoped that the research would also identify the degree of consistency within the District and how collaborative decision making models are used within the middle schools.
The significance to practice, learning and knowledge
With increasing budget shortfalls, the maintenance of a middle school program within a district is an expensive venture. The financial and staffing demands of middle school cause increased pressure on the district’s finances. The need to restructure middle schools to meet the financial and staffing requirements will require ongoing decisions about the way ...
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...is of this information will identify the types of decisions recorded for each group and the people involved in making the decisions. A comparison of the analysis from each school will be conducted to determine whether there is consistency in where and by whom different types of decisions are made.
A second questionnaire will be used with middle school administrators to identify the key factors that influence different types of decisions. Some of the questionnaires may be followed up on with interviews and anecdotal notes about the factors that influence decision making. The questionnaire would also ask administrators to describe positive and negative experiences with collaborative decision making. This data would be analysed to identify trends in usage of collaborative decision making and best practices for successful usage of collaborative decision making.
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