Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Comparative Study of School Leaders Use of Learning Consultants to Support At-Risk Students
by Forester, GinaMarie, Ed.D., Northcentral University, 2013, 262; 3577886
Abstract (Summary)

The education system continues to change and the needs of the 21st century learner are increasing. More students are being identified as at-risk. Statistics in New Jersey demonstrate trends that indicate the number of students being classified for special education is rising. Supervisors in schools need to develop and support programs to provide students with interventions that can meet their needs. The purpose of this qualitative comparative case study with eight participants, four Supervisors of Special Services and four Learning Disability Teacher Consultants from four different school districts in New Jersey was to examine effective leadership practices, procedures, and perspectives specific to the utilization of Learning Disability Teacher Consultants to support at-risk youth. The goal of this study was to determine if leadership techniques designed by the Supervisor of Special Services specific to the Learning Consultant's role impacted better results for students. Data collected proved that effective leadership techniques are essential. These findings linked to themes, which were original concepts related to effective leadership techniques and best practices. Conclusions based on the results indicated that best practices implemented by the supervisors in varied ways assisted in supporting at-risk students. These supervisors also perceived that there was value in using the Learning Consultant to assist in the implementation of these best practices to meet students' needs. Some additional conclusions related to supervisors' perceptions addressed the value of implementing Response to Intervention and Intervention and Referral Services, as well as professional development supports. Recommendations were made regarding using the Learning Disability Teacher Consultant as a member on the Intervention and Referral Services committee, as well as to provide professional development to staff. Additional effective leadership techniques to assist in successful outcomes were discussed. Further recommendations for future research on the analysis of specific best practices using key staff members, as well as effective leadership design were suggested. This future research along with the conclusions from this study could advance knowledge for leaders on how to better support the at-risk population.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Whitemarsh, Darylann
School: Northcentral University
School Location: United States -- Arizona
Source: DAI-A 75/04(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Educational leadership, School administration, Education
Keywords: At-risk students, Educational leadership, Intervention and referral services, Learning consultants, Response to intervention, Supervisors of special education
Publication Number: 3577886
ISBN: 978-1-303-65789-4
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