“Just listen to us”: The Role of Teacher Empowerment in the Implementation of Responsiveness to Intervention

Authors

  • Angela Pyle Queen's University
  • Lesly Wade-Woolley Queen's University
  • Nancy L. Hutchinson Queen's University

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.11575/ajer.v57i3.55495

Keywords:

teacher empowerment, professional development, program implementation, responsiveness to intervention (RTI)

Abstract

Teachers play a vital role in the implementation of new programs. This article discusses how best to support teachers in the face of such change. Specifically, we describe the perspectives of teachers who participated in a pilot project of the responsiveness to intervention model. Through focus group data, the researchers explored the barriers that teachers encountered during the first year of implementation as well as the supports that allowed them to overcome some of these barriers. Despite these supports, one major barrier persisted: all the participants in this study described feelings of powerlessness. This article explores the roots of these frustrations and highlights the resulting role that teacher empowerment can play in the successful implementation of new programs.

Les enseignants jouent un rôle crucial dans la mise en œuvre des nouveaux programmes. Cet article discute de façons d’appuyer les enseignants face à ce genre de changement. Plus spécifiquement, nous décrivons les perspectives des enseignants ayant participé à un projet pilote portant sur le modèle de la  réceptivité à l’intervention. Puisant dans les données provenant de groupes de consultation, les chercheurs ont étudié tant les barrières auxquelles les enseignants font face la première année de la mise en œuvre que les appuis qui leur avaient permis de surmonter certaines de ces barrières. Malgré ces appuis, une barrière importante demeurait : tous les participants à cette étude ont décrit un sentiment d’impuissance. Cet article analyse les racines de ces frustrations et fait ressortir le rôle subséquent que peut jouer le renforcement de l’autonomie des enseignants dans la mise en œuvre réussie des nouveaux programmes.

Author Biographies

Angela Pyle, Queen's University

Angela Pyle is a doctoral candidate in the Faculty of Education at Queen’s University. Her research interests include early-years education, early intervention, and teacher practice.

Lesly Wade-Woolley, Queen's University

Lesly Wade-Woolley is a professor in education and psychology at Queen’s University. She conducts research into reading development and reading difficulties.

Nancy L. Hutchinson, Queen's University

Nancy Hutchinson, a professor in cognitive studies in the Faculty of Education at Queen’s University, conducts research on the inclusion of individuals with disabilities in schools, communities, and workplaces. She teaches preservice courses on teaching in inclusive classrooms and graduate courses in cognitive studies, inclusive education, and qualitative research methods.

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