Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Good to great: Do award winning schools meet successful school criteria?
by Copple, William Bryan, II, Ed.D., Saint Louis University, 2010, 183; 3446530
Abstract (Summary)

Since the inception of the No Child Left Behind Act, school accountability has increased dramatically. The federal government has taken a much more active role in public education than it did prior to NCLB becoming law. Schools across the United States are working diligently to meet increased accountability standards. As schools and districts meet these accountability standards, many schools apply and receive awards based on various criteria. Two examples of school recognition programs are the Blue Ribbon and Gold Star awards programs. Schools who are publicly rewarded for their efforts gain popular notoriety throughout school communities. This report is a problem based learning project which focuses on if award winning schools demonstrate the characteristics identified by Jim Collins's book, Good to Great.

The team investigated whether award winning schools possess the same characteristics that Collins identifies in great organizations? The project team developed a set of criteria for great schools and districts by studying and adapting the criteria identified by Jim Collins and described in Good to Great. To answer the aforementioned question, 6 school districts in the KC metro region of the state of Missouri were identified to determine if award winning schools possess the characteristics identified by Collins. More importantly, research was conducted to determine if non-award winning schools possess the same characteristics as their recognized counterparts. The team identified two Blue Ribbon award winning districts, one Gold Star award winning districts, and three school districts whose reputations and distinction in performance award identifies them as outstanding school districts. All three of the publicly known successful school districts have not received a Gold Star or Blue Ribbon award during the past decade.

The team reviewed literature regarding successful and effective schools and districts in order to assess the degree to which the criteria used by education organizations to select award winners is grounded in "best practice" literature. A project survey was developed and school administrators and teachers were surveyed in all six schools. The attitudes and beliefs of each subject was identified in the project survey. Finally, the project team compared criteria used to select school and district award winners with the Collins' criteria. The team project reports the results of the analysis and made recommendations to various audiences regarding the identification of "great" schools in order to help educators identify their schools as successful and work toward establishing criteria that are evidence-based.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Wood, Jody
School: Saint Louis University
School Location: United States -- Missouri
Source: DAI-A 72/04, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Educational evaluation, Educational leadership, Educational administration
Keywords: Accountability, Award winning schools, Blue Ribbon schools, Gold Star schools, Good to great, Non-award winning schools, Successful schools
Publication Number: 3446530
ISBN: 978-1-124-50418-6
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