Wynne, Stefanie C.
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The purpose of this study was to examine the learning which occurs among teachers in a high performing middle school in the state of Georgia. The goal of the study was to uncover actual teacher perceptions regarding their personal learning experiences. To examine the job-embedded learning experiences of classroom teachers, at a high-achieving middle school in a large, urban, public school district, a qualitative case study method was used. Ten participants were each interviewed one time and observed during formal planning meetings. Artifacts and field notes rounded the data sources. The research was informed through one-on-one interviews and participant observations with the middle school teacher participants. Teacher perspective and actual observations of activities teachers participated in during the school day account for the basis of this research, with hopes to inform local, district, and state policies effecting mandates directly impacting the structure and required components of teacher professional learning. The major findings revealed sources of motivation for the teacher participants to improve their teaching practice, an examination of how teachers learn from one another during their workday, and an exploration of what influences teachers to participation in job-embedded professional learning. The findings of the study revealed that job-embedded learning is woven into the culture of Edison Middle School. Professional development of teachers is job-embedded, and the teachers take personal responsibility for their own learning. The findings suggest that the high-achieving school studied in this case study displayed practices which were consistent with effective professional learning practices and ideal team learning practices identified in the literature.
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