Co-creating innovations and teacher ownership
Research suggests a number of benefits from teacher participation in school improvement—chief among them that it can increase teacher receptivity to innovation and reform adoption. Improvement science has been put forward as a new paradigm for involving local school stakeholders in the improvement process. A new article by Christopher Redding and Samantha Viano explores the beliefs held by teachers and teacher leaders during the development and implementation of a locally developed innovation. Using interviews with over 260 educators, they find that teacher self-determination in the innovation design and implementation helped to garner a high level of teacher buy-in to the innovation. Compared with externally developed reforms, the innovation was less challenging to teacher autonomy and was customized to fit the needs of their students. These conditions led to high levels of teacher ownership over the innovation. Yet, in the process, teacher leaders grounded the innovation in preexisting and easy-to-implement practices that did not require significant investment from teachers to adopt.
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