The Relationship of Openness in School Climate to Academic Pupil Achievement and Teacher Attitude in Six Selected Des Moines Elementary Schools
Bowman, James E.
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The problem. The problem was concerned with a need to determine the extent to which organizational climate influenced teacher attitude toward their children and the effect of both variables on pupil achievement in six Des Moines Elementary Schools. In addition, schools having high, middle and low socio-economic status were compared. The climate subtests were examined with respect to their effect on achievement and teacher attitude. Procedures. In this study the results of an earlier study were used for the determination of school climate. The Organizational Climate Description Questionnaire (OCDQ) was used for this purpose. Two schools were chosen from each of the high, middle and low socio-economic areas of the community for the study. Pupil achievement scores were taken from those administered in the school district by the Department of Guidance and Testing. The district Department of Evaluation administered the Minnesota Teacher Attitude Inventory to eighty-eight teachers. In all, 738 fourth and sixth graders scores were used in the study. It was felt that the sample of fourth and sixth grades in six schools would be sufficient for providing the desired information. Findings. There was no significant relationship between openness of climate and academic pupil achievement. There was no relationship extant between pupil achievement and teacher attitude. Openness of climate and teacher attitude did not demonstrate evidence of a relationship. Factors other than climate and attitude were felt to have stronger influence on achievement than did either of those two factors. Student achievement tended to be high in schools which had high socio-economic status and low where SES was low. Conclusions. While openness of climate is considered to be a desirable goal for organizations including schools, there is no conclusive evidence that it will result in improved achievement by pupils. Moreover, teacher attitude may or may not be directly related to school climate. Teacher attitude, in this study, could not be said to directly influence pupil achievement any more than other factors which may prevail such as SES of children.
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