Creating university/K-12 partnerships for the enhancement of educational leadership preparation and increasing student achievement: Sustainability factors, barriers, and benefits.
Type of DegreeDissertation
Education Foundation, Leadership, and Technology
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Over ten years ago, universities and colleges were mandated to form partnership with their surrounding k-12 school districts as part of the redesign of educational leadership preparation programs for the purpose of strengthening educational leaders in schools and increasing student achievement. Programs revamped under those guidelines have been through at least 8 years of collaborative activities. Many educational leaders produced by the newer program have matriculated to graduate, been placed as assistant principals, advanced to be principals and are impacting schools as the educational leaders. The investigator in this study examined the efforts of one university to form partnership with its neighboring school districts. The researcher sought to discover the facilitative or impeding factors in maintaining strong partnership and measure the beneficial outcomes of the partnership. Social connections have been created by the involvement and commitment of the leaders and members. The sustainability and growth of the partnership relies upon the efforts of all those involved, but especially those of a clinical educator. Beyond the necessary human relationships and contributions, there has been the facilitating factor of open and regular communication to minimize or overcome the potential hindrances of funding, time constraints, proximity, number of partners, changes in staff members, and/or resistance to engage, so the partnership can thrive as an entity for moving all stakeholders toward one or more important outcomes. The noted benefits of this partnership include: higher quality leadership students, data to inform program curriculum, job placement opportunities for graduates, professional development opportunities/increased resources, professional networking, increased achievement in k-12 students, and an increase in quality of instructional leaders.