Perceptions of department chairpersons, principals and teachers concerning the supervisory functions of department chairpersons in secondary schools in Newfoundland and Labrador

Fitzpatrick, Karen H. (1987) Perceptions of department chairpersons, principals and teachers concerning the supervisory functions of department chairpersons in secondary schools in Newfoundland and Labrador. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine whether principals, department chairpersons, and teachers felt the supervisory functions generally associated with the department chairperson’s role, should be considered more important than what they were considered to be at the time of the investigation. -- The study was a cross-sectional description of the perceptions held by a random sample of secondary school teachers and the entire population of secondary school department chairpersons and their principals. Two hundred and twenty-two teachers, two hundred and twenty-two department chairpersons, and sixty-five principals were sent a questionnaire. The instrument, developed for this study, measured each reference group’s perception of the amount of importance presently placed on the 15 supervisory functions, and their perception as to the amount of importance which each group felt should be placed on the 15 functions. The statistical procedure used to test the hypotheses was the t-test. -- The major finding of this study was that principals, department chairpersons and teachers all felt that more importance should be placed on each of the supervisory functions examined. Functions which each of the three reference groups felt should be considered important functions of the department chairperson’s role included: improving student evaluation procedures, evaluating and changing the department's instructional program, developing the department’s goals and objectives, orienting new teachers, coordinating the work of department teachers, assessing the need for teacher inservice, and keeping department members informed. -- The supervisory functions of coordinating the use of resource people, reporting department activities, orienting substitutes, conducting demonstration teaching, and coordinating the department's program with other school departments, were considered, by all three reference groups, to be somewhat important functions of the department chairperson's role. Informally observing teachers was a function which all three reference groups felt should be considered more important, but principals, department chairpersons and teachers were reluctant to suggest that this function should even be considered a somewhat important function of the department chairperson’s role. -- The major finding suggests the need for school boards and school administrators to examine the functions presently performed by department chairpersons, and to then define or redefine the minimum parameters of the department chairperson position. School boards and school administrators should also structure the department chairperson position in such a way that department chairpersons are given the authority and time needed to perform these functions. The development of an on-going evaluation procedure for the department chairperson position would better ensure effective use of this position.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/5211
Item ID: 5211
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 126-130.
Department(s): Education, Faculty of
Date: 1987
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Departmental chairmen (High schools)--Newfoundland and Labrador

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