The role of the effective administrative reading coordinator as perceived by the coordinators, teachers, principals, and other administrators
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This study had two major purposes: (a) to determine the role of the administrative reading coordinator as perceived by teachers, elementary principals, the coordinators, and curriculum directors in 10 Texas suburban school districts, five of the districts employing an administrating reading coordinator (ARC) and (b) to determine the effectiveness of the five ARCs as evaluated by the coordinators themselves, their principals, teachers, and curriculum directors. Four major roles were identified from research in general supervision: consulting, bringing about change, working with reading materials, and coordinating district program. Twenty-eight role indicators are listed under the four comprehensive roles as part of the Role/Role Indicators Assessment Instrument used with the four population groups. The importance of each role and role indicator was weighed by each population group in the 10 districts. The five districts with ARCs also rated the performance of the ARC in each role indicator. The teachers as compared to the ARCs placed less importance on eight role indicators and one major category. The principals placed less importance on six role indicators and one major category. The curriculum directors placed less emphasis on only one role indicator. Teachers in districts without ARCs compared to teachers with ARCs valued higher two major categories and six role indicators. There were no differences in role perceptions for the principals and curriculum directors without and with ARCs. The teachers with ARCs compared the desired and actual performance of their ARC in the role indicators. Teachers showed dissatisfaction with performance in all role indicators. Principals showed dissatisfaction with actual performance in all role indicators but three. The curriculum directors indicated no differences in the desired and actual performances for the role indicators. The ARCs gave themselves low ratings for two of the role indicators. A comparison of the ARCs' performance as perceived by the ARCs and each of the other three groups was made. Teachers gave the ARCs lower ratings for eight role indicators. Principals gave lower ratings for nine indicators. Curriculum directors agreed with the ARCs' perceptions of the actual performance in the indicators. The Personal Orientation Inventory by Shostrom was given to the five ARCs. An analysis of variance was done to determine if any of the mean performance ratings for the coordinators were different. The test was positive. The Newman-Keuls test revealed three performance scores to be significantly higher compared to the other two. Two of the highly-rated ARCs had high scores on the POI. The third most highly-rated coordinator had a score that was not valid. General supervisors were named as the most common source of leadership in reading in districts without ARCs. The curriculum directors and principals disagreed on the actual leadership exhibited by the principals. The principals and teachers gave poorer performance ratings to the ARCs in the role indicators than the curriculum directors and the ARCs themselves. The major category of bringing about change and the related role indicators had the lowest importance ratings from teachers with ARCs. Teachers without ARCs seemed to give greater value to this category. The research results indicated the need for a defined role for the individual reading coordinator, the possibility of using the POI as a screening instrument for use when interviewing potential reading coordinators, and the lack of designated reading leaders in districts without reading coordinators.