Leadership Removed: Chronicling the Repercussions of High-Stakes Accountability
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The results of this project, which was focused on chronicling the stories of successful school leaders who were removed from their posts as a result of high-stakes accountability systems, exposed oppressive treatment of school leaders within the Texas high-stakes accountability system and suggest the nationally mandated accountability system may be producing similar results in other states. A report of these findings was published in the Phi Delta Kappan, a highly respected educational journal with an acceptance rate of less than five percent. Moreover, this project led to an additional study focused on the examination of how accountability systems may be affecting students. The researcher is currently conducting a mixed-methods study of the use of instructional time for test preparation. Preliminary results of a comparative analysis of the five highest and five lowest wealth districts in the state suggest students in low-wealth districts receive significantly less instructional time than their peers in more affluent districts. Based on these results, the study has been expanded to include a study of all school districts Texas.
In addition to focusing on data collection, this project afforded the researcher an opportunity to test a new generation of voice recognition software and digital recording technology to assist with transcribing qualitative research data. This technology has proven quite useful although its full potential is still being explored.