Hiring Practices and its Connection to the Conceptualization of ‘a Good Teacher’ in Diverse Classrooms


Abstract: This article explores the role of hiring practices in the conceptualization of what makes a teacher ‘a good teacher’, especially in diverse classrooms. It is based on a multiple case study that examined the perceptions of the experience of four high school English language arts educators teaching in diverse classrooms in Alberta, Canada. These practitioners suggest that hiring practices are mostly unreliable as principals’ hiring decisions are often strongly influenced by noticeable teachers’ personal traits and their preconceived perceptions of what a ‘good’ teacher is. During the hiring process, such interpretation often relies on the sole perceptions of the experience of school principals, which are usually not supported by effective hiring practices research. Hiring ‘the most suitable’ teacher to meet the needs of increasingly complex classrooms is key to education. As education strives for responding to the needs of an increasingly diverse community of learners, reflecting on hiring practices is important to improve the quality of the education provided to students. Teachers’ perspectives on hiring practices are important as they could potentially contribute and inform professional development initiatives, teacher preparation programs, and educational policies regarding a possible connection between administrative roles and teacher effectiveness.