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Getting from Here to There: The Roles of Policy Makers and Principals in Increasing Science Teacher Quality

  • Author(s): Shen, Ji
  • Gerard, Libby
  • Bowyer, Jane
  • et al.
Abstract

In this study we investigate how federal and state policy makers, and school principals are working to improve science teacher quality. Interviews, focused discussions, and policy documents serve as the primary data source. Findings suggest that both policy makers and principals prioritize increasing incentives for teachers entering the science teaching profession, providing professional development for new teachers, and using students’ data to evaluate and improve instruction. Differences between the two leadership groups emerged in terms of the grain size and practicality of their concerns. Our findings indicate that the complexity of educational challenges to improve science teacher quality call for the co-construction of policy by multiple constituent groups including school principals, federal and state policy makers, and science education researchers.

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