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Improvingteachercollaboration The role of classroom characteristics and individual factors on teachers collaboration:AlatentGrowthCurveApproach

Dr. Sigrun K. Ertesvg, Associate Professor, Centre for Behavioural Research, University of StavangerPaper presented at the ICSEI Congress 2011 International Congress for School effectiveness and Improvement. Linking Research, Policy and Practice to Promote QualityinEducation,LimassolCyprusJanuary47th Abstract
A growing body of research suggests that participation in more collaborative professional communities affect teaching practice and improves students learning. This paper presents results from a study aimed to explore the improvement in teachers collaboration throughout participation in one out of two school improvement projects carried out in the period of 20062009. Both projects were initiated to strengthen classroom management. Structured and collaborative interaction around identified topics was a key implementation strategy in both interventions. The present study aimed at investigating teachers increase in collaboration throughout the projects and discusses the implications for professional development.

Teachers at 28 Norwegian schools attending either the Respect programme or Handbook on classroom management were included. Both interventions lasted two years. A web- based questionnaire was administered at three times, before (T1), one year into (T2) and at the end (T3) of the two year interventions. Latent variable growth curves were applied for investigation of the improvement of teacher collaboration. Results suggested that teachers, in general, increased collaboration throughout the interventions. Also, factors affecting teacher collaboration are discussed. The teachers perceptions of the learning environment in their classroom and work strain due to pupil misbehaviour were among the investigated factors. Differences between the two interventions discussed. Introduction Traditionallyteachersworkedaloneintheirclassroom,withlittleornoprofessional discussionwiththeircolleagues.Researchershavesuggestedthatteachersgenerallyavoid seekingopportunitiestoshareorcommunicateinwaysthatimposeonotherteachers.Also, teachersvalueautonomymorethanthechancetoinfluenceotherswork(Hargreaves, 2005;Levine&Marcus,2008;McLaughlin&Talbert,2001).Agrowingbodyofresearch suggeststhatparticipationinmorecollaborativeprofessionalcommunitiesaffectteaching practiceandimprovestudentslearning(Vescio,Ross,&Adams,2008).Akeyfindingarethe criticalroleofcollaborationanddevelopmentofacollaborativeculturetoaccomplishin schoolstoimproveteachingpracticeandincreasestudentachievement(Waldron& McLeskey,2010).Previousresearch(Midthassel&Bru,2001)indicatesthatacollective approachwhichimpliedreflectioninteachergroupswasamotivatingfactor.Thesocial valueofworkingwithcolleagueshasbeenrecognised(Locke&Taylor,1991).Sinceteachers mayfeelleftalonewiththeirproblemsintheclassrooms,thesocialvalueassociatedwith teachercollaborationmightbeamotivationfactorforengagingininterventions.Also, teachercollaborationispresumedtobeapowerfullearningenvironmentforteachers professionaldevelopment(Meirink,Meijer,&Verloop,2007).Thispaperpresentsresults
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fromastudyaimedtoexploretheimprovementinteacherscollaborationthroughout participationinoneoutoftwoschoolimprovementprojectscarriedoutintheperiodof 20062009.ThetwointerventionswereTheRespectprogramme,aschoolwideintervention topreventandreduceproblembehaviourandsupportthelearningenvironment,andthe Thehandbookonclassroommanagementproject.Bothprojectswereinitiatedtoenhance theteachersauthoritativeteaching.Structuredandcollaborativeinteractionaround identifiedtopicswasakeyimplementationstrategyinbothinterventions.Thepresentstudy aimatinvestigatingteachersincreaseincollaborationthroughouttheprojectsanddiscuss theimplicationsforprofessionaldevelopment. Theoreticalframework NearlythreedecadesagoLittle(1982)describedfourtypesofcollaborativeactivitiesthat appearcrucialforcontinuousprofessionaldevelopment:1)teachersengageinfrequent, continuous,andincreasinglyconcreteandprecisetalkaboutteachingpractice2)teachers arefrequentlyobservedandprovidedwithusefulcritiquesoftheirteaching,3)teachers plan,design,research,evaluate,andprepareteachingmaterialstogether,4)teachersteach eachotherthepracticeofteaching.Schoolsaretherebydistinguishedonthebasisofspecific supportfordiscussionofclassroompractice,mutualobservationandcritique,sharedefforts todesignandpreparecurriculum,andsharedparticipationinthebusinessofinstructional improvement.Thesefourtypesofpracticessoclearlydistinguishthemoresuccessfulfrom thelesssuccessfulschools,Littleargues.Perhapsthemajorsimilaritybetweenthesefour activitiesisthatallofthemcaninvolvedialogicreflection(Munthe,2003).Theconceptof thereflectivepractitionerasdevelopedbySchn(1987)isonewayofdescribingand developingskilledandthoughtfuljudgement.Howsituationsareperceivedcanfurtherbe developedthroughreflectionandobservationinpracticegoinghandinhand. Morerecentresearchevidencesupportsthatcertaintypesofprofessionaldevelopment activities,(e.g.regularstudygroups,structuredcollaborativeinitiatives)aremorelikelythan otherstooffersustainedlearningopportunities.Incomparisontothetraditionalonehit workshop,thesetypesofactivitiesareusuallylongerinduration,allowteachersthe opportunitytopracticeandreflectupontheirteachingandareembeddedinongoing teachingactivities(Boyle,While,&Boyle,2004).Itisassumedthatexchangingideas, conceptions,opinions,peoplecangenerateorcreateknowledgewhichcouldnothavebeen generatedbyoneindividual(Meirink,etal.,2007;Tillema,2006).Bothintervention containedstructuredandcollaborativeinteractionsaroundthetopicsofclassroom managementandbehaviouralproblemsthroughouttheproject.Amainaimofthepresent studyistoinvestigateiftheperceivedcollaborationondiscussing,planningandperforming teachingincreasedasintendedbyparticipationintheintervention.

Pupilsmisbehaviourisagreatconcerntomanyteachersandhasbeenshowntoaffect stressandburnoutamongteachers(e.g.Kokkinos,2007;CluniesRoss,2008).Perceiving unhealthylearningenvironmentintheclassroomorstrainduetopupilsmisbehaviourmay affectteachersselfefficacy(Lambert,McCharthy,ODonnel,&Wang,2009)asateacher andplacingthematriskforstressandburnout.Collaborationmayprovideguidanceand supportonhowtohandlepupilbehaviourinclass.Giventhisitmayprovidethesocial supportfoundtobeessentialinmanagingstressandburnoutamongteachers(vanDick& Wagner,2001).


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Hargreaves(2005)foundthatforteacherslateintheircareer,theirexperiencesofrepetitive educationalchangetendtowearthemdown,andmostteachersbecomeresistanttoand resilienttowardschangeefforts.Basedonthis,itisinterestingtoinvestigateifmore experiencedteachersshowalowerlevelofcollaborationatbaselineindicatingthatthisalso appliestocollaboration.However,thisdoesnotapplytochangeinsidetheclassroom.Many teachersinlatercareerwhoseenergyisbeginningtowane,becomespositivefocuserswho concentratetheirimprovementeffortsintheirownclassroomswheretheybelievetheycan bestmakeadifference.Beinganactivitynotspecificallycarriedoutintheclassroom,albeit highlyrelevanttoclassroomactivity,collaborationmaybeaffectedbyteacherswork experience.Thechallengesrelatedtomanagingpupilsmisbehaviourinclass,bothto beginningandmoreexperiencedteachers(Evertson&Weinstein,2006)maybeamotivating factorforcollaborativeactivitieslikediscussionsonteachingpracticeandmanaging behaviour.Sinceteachersmayfeelleftalonewiththeirproblemsintheclassrooms,the socialvalueassociatedwithteachercollaborationmightbeamotivatingfactorforengaging ininterventions.Teachercollaborationispresumedtocreateapowerfullearning environmentforteachersprofessionaldevelopment(Meirink,Meijer,&Verloop,2007). However,Little(1982)pointstowaysofcollaborationthatdidnotenhancelearningand Hargreaves(1995)warnsthatcontrivedcollaborationcanbeathreattoteacher development.ThisisinlinewithZahorik(1987)arguingthatteacherbehaviourmightbea difficultissueincollaboration. Methods Sample Teachersat28schoolsattendingoneoutoftwoschoolwideinterventionswereincluded. 243teachersat10schoolsattendedaprojectoncreationofaHandbookonclassroom management(Midthassel,2006)and657teachersat18schoolsattendedtheRespect programme(Ertesvg,2009;Ertesvg&Vaaland,2007),whichisaimedatpreventand reduceproblembehaviour.Bothinterventionslastedtwoyears.Awebbasedquestionnaire wasadministeredatthreetimes,before(T1),oneyearinto(T2)andattheendof(T3)the twoyearinterventions.Theresponseratewas66%,70%and59%respectively. Arollingdesignwasapplied,includingtheteachersworkingattheschoolatthetimeofdata collection.Teacherswholefttheschoolsdroppedoutofthestudy.Newteachersstarting workattheschoolswereincludedatthesecondandthirdwaves,asthesampleateach wavewasteacherscurrentlyworkingattheschool.Theimplicationsofmissingnessdueto designisdiscussed.Athoroughdiscussionofmissingdataanditsimplicationforthestudyis providedinErtesvg(2011). Measures Teachersselfreportedcollaborationwasmeasuredbyascalemadeuptocoverthe categoriesthatLittle(1982)foundtobecharacteristicofschoolswhereprofessional developmenttakesplace.Therelationshipbetweenincreasedcollaborationandschools innovationclimate,andteachersperceptionofworkstrainduetopupilmisbehaviourwas investigated.Teachersselfreportedcollaborationismeasuredbyafouritem(seeTable1)scale
madeuptocoverthecategoriesmentionedabovethatLittle(1982)foundtobecharacteristicof 3

schoolswhereprofessionaldevelopmenttakesplace.Previousstudieshavefoundthismeasurement tobevalidandreliable(Munthe,2003). Thepupilstrainscaleismadeupoffouritemsrepresentingdifferenttypesofstrainrelatedtopupil behaviour.Itemsare:Howmuchstraindoyouexperiencerelatedtothefollowingconditions?1) Pupilsthreateningotherpupils,2)Pupilsinconflictwithotherpupilsoutsidetheclassroom3) Pupilsthreateningstaffmembers4)ClasseswhereIasateacherdonothavecontrol.The measurementmodelisnotoptimalbecausemodificationindicesindicatethattwooftheerrorterms correlatewitheachotherindicatingthattheybelongtoacommondifferentfactor.Specifyingthis correlation,thefitindicesaregood(CFI=1.00;TLI1.00;SRMR=.032;RMSEA=.00490%CI=.000 .101). Theteachersperceptionofthelearningenvironmentintheclassroomismeasuredbyfiveitems relatedtothepupilsofftaskbehaviour.Itemsare1)WhenIamteachingthewholeclass,most pupilsarelisteningcarefully2)Whenthepupilsareworkingingroups,mostpupilsconcentrateon thetask3)Whenthepupilsareworkingindividually,mostpupilsconcentrateonthetask4)When pupilareworkingonprojects,mostpupilsconcentrateonthetask5)WhenIaskthepupilstochange activity,mostpupilschangequickandquietly.Scoreswere0Agreecompletely,1agreetosome degree,2disagreetosomedegree,3totallydisagree.Thespecifiedmodeldidnotprovideperfect fit.AlthoughmostfitindiceswerewithinthecutoffsuggestedbyHuandBentler,theRMSEAvalue wasnot.Inspectionofthemodificationindicesindicatedthattheerrortermsofitem2and4 correlatewitheachother.Specifyingthiscorrelationprovidedgoodfit(CFI=1.00;TLI0.98;SRMR= .013;RMSEA=.05390%CI=.024.084). Workexperiencewasmeasuredbyyearsofteaching.Teachersweredividedingroupsaccordingto experience.Thisdemarcationofthecareerinperiodsaccordingtoexperiencemustbeseenas arbitraryandnotconnectedtospecificcareerstages.Theteachersweredividedinfourgroups03 years(N=220),510years(N=207),1120years(N=222),morethan20years(N=235). Genderwasscored1forwomenand2formenandInterventionwasscored1fortheRespect programmeand2fortheHandbookonclassroommanagement. Dataanalysis

LatentvariablegrowthcurvesusingMplus(Muthen&Muthen,19982007)wereappliedfor investigationoftheimprovementofteachercollaboration.Also,Confirmatoryfactoranalysis (CFA)andStructuralequationmodelling(SEM)wereapplied.Conventionalanalyseswere conductedusingSPSS(Noruisis,2007). IntheirrecommendationsforgoodnessoffitindicesHuandBentler(1999)suggestedusing cutoffvaluecloseto.08forthestandardizedrootmeansquaredresidual(SRMR)and supplementingitwithindicesliketheTuckerLewisIndex(TLI)andtheComparativeFitIndex (CFI)withcutoffvaluescloseto.95.Theyalsorecommendedincludingtherootmean squareerrorofapproximation(RMSEA)withcutoffvalueofabout.06orless.TheRMSEAis supportedbya90%confidenceinterval(90%CI).Duetotherelativelylargenumberof subjects,traditional2testmayprovideinadequateassessmentofmodelfit(Jreskog, 1993).Giventhis2testsisnotincluded. Results Descriptivestatistics Descriptivestatisticsforthedifferentitemsrepresentingcollaborationatdifferenttime pointsispresentedinTable1.Resultsindicateanincreaseincollaborationformost
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items.Inspectionsofthedescriptivestatisticsforthetwointerventiongroupsindicateda largerincreaseincollaborationforteachersparticipatingintheRespectprogrammethan forteachersparticipatingintheHandbookproject. Growthmodel Thegrowthmodelbuildsonaframeworkformeasuringcollaborationlongitudinal previouslydeveloped.AstepbystepprocedurewasappliedassuggestedbyJreskog, 1993.Detailedinformationofthefitindicesforthedifferentmodelsareprovidedby Ertesvg(submitted). Ingrowthcurvemodelinginterceptisalatentvariableexpressingtheindividualbase line/T1score,herebaselinescoreforcollaboration.Slopeisalatentvariablethat expressestheindividualchangefrombaseline/T1toposttest/T3,i.e.themeanchange incollaboration.Themeanvalueofinterceptandslopeareexpressionsofaveragebase linescoreandaveragechangescoresrespectively.Testoftheunconditionaltheoretical modelprovidedgoodfit(CFI=0.98;TLI0.98;SRMR=.056;RMSEA=.02990%CI=.019.039). Themainaimwastoexamineeffectsofperceivedlearningenvironmentintheclassroom andstrainduetopupilmisbehaviouronbaselinescoreandchangeincollaboration. Additiontheeffectofworkexperienceandgenderwereinvestigated.Also,differences betweenincollaborationthetwointerventionswereofinterest. Initially,thedescriptivestatisticsindicatedthattheremaybedifferencesinimprovement betweenthetwointerventionsamodeltestingfordifferencesbetweeninterventions weremodelled.Themodelprovidedfairfit(CFI=0.92;TLI0.91;SRMR=.087;RMSEA= .05290%CI=.048.056).Nosignificantdifferencesincollaborationbetweenteachers participatinginthetwointerventionswasfoundneitherinbaselinelevel(=0.09p= .108)norchange(=0.20,p=.070).However,teachersthatparticipateintheRespect programmetendedtoimprovemore,thedifferencewasnotsignificant.Astherewere nodifferencesincollaborationbetweenthetwointerventions,interventionwas excludedfromforasimplermodel. Thetheoreticalmodelincludinglearningenvironment,strainduetopupilsmisbehaviour, genderandwastestedresultinginfitindicesnotmeetingthesuggestedcutoffvalues suggestedbyHuandBentler(1993)(CFI=0.95;TLI0.94;SRMR=.082;RMSEA=.04390% CI=.039.047)forallfitindices.However,theindiceswerewithinwhatBrown(1993) characterisedasfairfit. Regardingbaselinelevelteacherasignificantnegativeeffectoflearningenvironment wasfound(=0.28.,p=.000).Teacherperceivingapositivelearningenvironment reportedhigherlevelofcollaborationthanteachersreportingaproblematiclearning environment.Noeffectofperceivedstrainduetopupilsmisbehaviour(=0.04,p =.540),forworkexperience(=0.004,p=.941)orgender(=0.08,p=.192)were found.Theresultsindicatedthattherewerenodifferenceinreportsofcollaboration betweenteacherswithdifferencesinworkexperience,menandwomenorteacherswith differentperceptionofstrainduetopupilsmisbehaviour.Althoughnodirecteffectof genderwasfound,aweak,albeitsignificant,indirecteffectthroughlearning

Table 1 Item means (M), standard deviation (SD), Skwenes s (Ske), Kurtosis (Kurt) and Chronbachs alpha for scales measuring warmth and control Item Collaboration I participate in collaboration with colleagues.... 1. ..planning lessons/topics 2. ..in structured peer counselling in pairs or groups 3. ..pupil assessment 4. ..in discussing teaching and pedagogical practice Rating format is 0-5, where 0 = never and 5 = very often.

M 3.93 1.58 3.40 3.60

Time 1 SD Ske -1.25 1.58 1.20 1.12 -1.32 .62 -.94 -.82

Kurt 1.37 -.80 .75 .61

M 3.95 2.99 3.59 3.75

Time 2 SD Ske 1.21 1.67 1.13 1.07 -1.30 -.47 -.81 -.90

Kurt 1.29 -.99 .56 .85

M 3.98 3.04 3.65 3.83

Time 3 SD Ske 1.19 1.73 1.10 1.06 -1.19 -.57 -.94 -1.08

Kurt .80 -.96 1.14 1.44

Table 2 Analyses of Attrition. Demographic Statistics for Teachers Taking Part at all Waves and Teachers Taking Part at One or Two Waves. Participants taking part at all Participants taking part at one or waves(N=253) two waves (N=540) Gender Female (N=638) 48% 52% Male (N=245) 53% 47% Age 25 year or younger (N=32) 26-30 years (N=154) 31-40 years (N=298) 41-50 years (N=168) 51-60 years (N=191) 61 years or older (N=47) Seniority Less than 5 years (N=220) 5-10 years (N=207) 11-20 years (N=222) More than 20 years (N=235) Mean years at the school 3% 16% 23% 36% 44% 30% 14% 21% 37% 29% 11.9 (SD=8.33)*** 97% 84% 77% 64% 56% 70% 86% 79% 64% 72% 7.7 (SD=7.67)

environmentwasfound(=0.05,p=.001).Giventhatteacherreportsthesamelevelof learningenvironment,womenreportssignificantlyhighercollaborationthanmenat baseline. Amaineffectofcollaborationwasfound.Giventhis,teachersreportedincreasein collaborationwithcolleaguesfromT1toT3.Noeffectswerefoundoflearning environment(=0.05,p=.582),strainduetopupilsmisbehaviour(=0.07,p=.472)or gender(=0.06,p=.650)norwasthereanyindirecteffects.However,adirecteffectof workexperiencewasfound(=0.07,p=.001)indicatingthatmoreexperiencedteachers improvedmoreincollaborationthantheiryoungercolleagues. Ingeneralwomenreportedlessproblemsinlearningenvironmentthanmen(=0.42,p =.000).Thesameappliedtostrainduetopupilsmisbehaviour(=0.26,p=.001). However,onlytheindirectonbaselinelevelofcollaboration,referredtoabove, indicatedeffectoncollaboration. Discussion The main purpose of the study was to examine the direct and indirect effects of perceived learning environment and strain due to pupils misbehaviour on collaboration. Genderdifferencesaswellaseffectsofworkexperiencewerealsoinvestigated. In general, teachers improved in collaboration throughout the intervention period. Teachers in the Respect programme tended to improve more than teacher attended the Handbook on classroom management, the difference was not significant. This may not come as a surprise, as schools attending such schoolwide intervention,may be oriented towards collaboration in the first place. Reflections in pairs, groups and/or among all staff, activities associated with collaboration, was key aspects of both interventions. The Respect programme being more holistic, intervening with all sides of the school activity, one could have expected the results to be higher among these teachers. On the other hand, being a more complex intervention, it may take time before the full effect of the interventioncanbeseen. The fact that teacher did improve their collaboration was not a surprise as in the interventions, as noted above, collaborative activities were central to the applied implementation strategy. Given this, the increase in collaboration may be an indication that the teachers actually implemented the intervention which, accord to previous research is not obvious (Midthassel & Ertesvg, 2008; Ertesvg, et al. 2010). However, it does not necessarily indicate that teachers actually learned from the collaborative activities. Wenger (1998) describes the concept of communities of practice as groups of people that are mutually engaged in a joint enterprise and who share a common repertoiresetsofroutines,tools,symbols,stories,andotherresourcesforengagingin their work. Wenger argues that communities of practice cannot be designed. However, what can be designed are infra structures that foster learning e.g. opportunities for engagement, imagination and alignment. Implicitly, what Wenger underscore is that people cannot be forced to learn, all one can do is provide a learning opportunities. Skerrett (2010) points to the distinction between communities practice and learning community by discussing how a secondary English department in Canada struggled to develop into a learning community although they manage to develop communities of
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practice. This distinction between an infrastructure providing for collaborative activities, community of practice and learning communities may be important in standardized interventions as they aim at providing for deep and collaborative learning among teachers. Previous research (Ertesvg, et al., 2010) also indicate that the infrastructure aimed at supporting learning among teachers is vulnerable to failing leadership. Grossman and colleagues (2001) and Warren Little (2002) have conducted interesting studies into how teacher learning communities develop, the processes and typed of learning that occur in them, and the possibilities and dilemmas of developing and studying teacher learning communities. Internationally, there is general consensus in the
field, that school based intervention, like the two in this study, implemented outside of efficacy trials or highly controlled research studies are typically not implemented with high quality (e.g. Domitrovich et al. 2008; Gotfredson & Gotfredson, 2002; Durlak & DuPre, 2008). Given this, there is need for further investigation of the quality of collaboration in schoolwide interventions. Transferring the effective programmes into real world settings and maintaining them there is a complicated, longterm process that requires dealing effectively with the successive, complex phases of programme diffusion. Moreover, schools lacking organizational capacity are expected to have difficulty implementing sound instructional programmes of all types(Gottfredson&Gottfredson,2002)

Many teachers struggle to manage behaviour in class (e.g. Sokal, Smith, & Mowat, 2003; vanTartwijk,denBrok,Veldman,&Wubbels,2009).Basedontherelationshipsbetween stress and burnout related to pupils strain (e.g. Kresh, Kulinna, & Cothran, 2010), it was expected that perceived learning environment and/or strain due to pupils misbehaviour may affect the level and change of collaboration among teachers. The hypothesised model was partly supported by the data. Interestingly enough, strain due to pupils misbehaviourhadnoeffectneitheronbaselinelevelnorchangeincollaboration.Based on the result there is no reason to anticipate that teachers perceiving strain due to pupils stain perceive less collaboration than teachers not perceiving strain. Neither is thereanyindicationthattheyimprovelessincollaboration. Perceived learning environment had a direct effect on baseline level of collaboration indicating that teachers scoring the learning environment of their classroom(s) positive reported more collaboration than their colleagues perceiving disturbing learning environment. Interestingly, there was also an indirect effect of gender through learning environment on baseline level of collaboration indicating given teachers experienced the learning environment equally positive women reported more collaboration than men. A possible explanation is that especially for those teachers experiencing problems in their classroom learning environment collaboration with colleagues serve as social support and an arena for discussing of improvements. Given that, in general, it seems to be easier for women than men to admit they have problems in the classroom, this may beonepossiblereason.

Limitationsandimplicationsforfurtherresearch Somecautionisneededininterpretingtheresults.Thisstudyfocusedontwosamplesof teachers attending a school development programme, so results might not be apply to other populations. However, there is no reason to believe that the results might not applytosimilarinterventions. Also, attrition due to the rolling design may have affected the results as there were
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found significant differences in the samples of teachers participating one or two times and those participating three times. Age and thus work experience was related to participation in that elderly teachers tended to participate three times. The results indicated that moreexperienced teachers tended to improve more incollaboration than their younger colleagues. Given that less experienced teachers tended to participate fewertimesthantheirmoreexperiencedcolleagues,thismayhaveaffectedtheresults. The data were based on the teachers reports of the collaboration in different areas related to teaching. The current study does not investigate the quality of the collaboration. The interventions aimed at improving the schools as learning organizations. Given this, future studies may focus on how teachers jointly engage in their practice, develop, negotiate, and shear meaning and dependent of the forms of participationandaction,experiencedeeplearninginandabouttheirpractice. The nested structure, teachers within schools, enable a multilevel approach. However, there were inconclusive indications of a two level model as only some of the items indicated differences between schools with design effect above the rule of thumb value of 2.0. It is reasonable to assume that schools may vary in level of collaboration among schoolsasschoolsmayvaryintheirapproachtolearninganddevelopment.Blossingand Ertesvg (resubmitted) found that school failing in implementing interventions were characterised by a individual learning perspective, opposite to schools succeeding in implementing schoolwide interventions. Given, this the nested structure of collaborationshouldbefurtherinvestigated. Implicationsforpractice Although, teachers in general reported increase in collaboration, the findings from this study as well as previous studies, suggest that implementing schoolwide initiatives are challenging. A main challenge to teachers as well as schools is to implement collective effortsanddevelopacollaborativeculturewhichaimsatsupporttheindividualteachers professionaldevelopment. One of the most powerful factors known to undermine continuation is turnover of staff and administrators (Fullan 2007). The present study indicated relatively high teacher turnover over the three time points separated by one year each. Few interventions plan for the orientation and inservice support for new members of staff who arrive after the programme has started (Hargreaves & Fink 2006). Teacher turnover and how this is handled have previously been found to affect the continuation of the work according to the principle of the Respect programme (Ertesvg, et al. 2010). An implication should be that the Respect programme, as well as other schoolwide interventions, in order to promote lasting change carefully plan and organize for support of new teachers attendingtheschool. Also, teachers perceptions of the priority given to school development efforts influence theirowninvolvement(Midthassel2004).Highfocusfromtheheadteacherandothersin the formal leadership might support the efforts to implement collaborative actions to support implementation of the interventions. Hajnal et al. (1998) found that the schools which achieved lasting change were those with dynamic, facilitative leadership and a professional community culture. The teachers and management in these schools were
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