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Journal for Effective Schools

Volume 11, Number 1

administrators who want to hire a teacher with characteristics linked to increased student achievement. Kaplan concludes that principals who build sustainable learning cultures and know the research – rather than those who depend on the “old and reliable” proxies for teacher quality – are more likely to find and keep teachers whose students make at least one year’s worth of academic gain in one school year. The implications bring to mind John Lennon’s song, Imagine. The second article, by Ware, Cheema, and Kitsantas, entitled “Efficacy, Consequences, and Teacher Commitment in the Era of No Child Left Behind,” is an empirical article that discusses the impact of a high-stakes achievement environment on teacher and principal efficacy and their implications for effective schools. Principal efficacy – the belief in one’s ability to create change, and teacher efficacy – the degree to which one feels personally capable of effectively teaching all students to successful outcomes – are important aspects of a positive school culture. Looking at these factors using data from the Schools and Staffing Survey, the authors’ findings show teacher commitment was higher where student performance goals were met. Moreover, teacher efficacy and the principal’s role in establishing student performance standards had a positive influence on teacher commitment. Interestingly, the study showed offering supplemental educational services and school attendance choice were associated with increased teacher commitment while offering supplemental educational services to students was associated with reduced teacher commitment. You will have an interesting research design (HLM) and a good read with implications for effective schools in this article. The third article, by Scott Burckbuchler, is a relatively new topic to JES – performance-based budgeting. Performance-based budgeting, also known as results-based budgeting, ties funding decisions to specific performance outcomes. “School District Budget Development: A Shift to Link Purse to Performance” is a mixed methods study that examines the state of budgeting practices in Region 2 of Virginia’s 8 regions. Region 2 contains 15 school divisions of the 134 in the Commonwealth (districts are called “divisions” in Virginia) with more than 280,000 students. The study examined if a performance-based budgeting orientation has increased since the start of NCLB and if this budgeting practice is associated with student achievement. His findings indicate that since NCLB, school districts appear to have made significant changes in the budget decision-making process – moving to performance-based practices. Moreover, a linear relationship appears to exist between the increased use of performance-based budgeting and increased


Journal for Effective Schools - Spring 2013  
Journal for Effective Schools - Spring 2013  

Vol. 11, #1