A study of novice elementary teachers’ voices on their retention and the role of instructional coaching
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This qualitative case study explored teacher retention in elementary schools by examining novice teachers’ perceptions about instructional coaching and the influence it may exert on career decisions. The role of the instructional coach was analyzed within the structure of a school district using Bolman and Deal’s four frames model, which strengthens a leader’s ability to comprehend complex organizational processes. A total of thirteen instructional coaches and novice teachers from four elementary schools in the same school district participated in individual, semi-structured interviews that allowed for open-ended responses pertaining to the central theme of the study. Themes that emerged from the interviews revealed that teachers consider the role of the instructional coach to be supportive in the academic realm as well as in the emotional. While some new teachers viewed the instructional coach to be pivotal in their success, others considered the instructional coach as ancillary. Most prevalent in the findings was the symbolic image of school as “family.” Novice teachers and instructional coaches returned to the concept of school as a family when they referred to a place where they felt comfortable. Finally, this study concluded that school organizations are capable of influencing teacher retention when they create environments where the newest members can find a sense of belonging.
Thesis (Ed.D.)-- Wichita State University, College of Education, Dept. of Counseling, Educational Leadership, Educational and School Psychology