An analysis of educational needs as perceived by secondary school administrators in Hawaii
Yee, James A. Y.
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The purpose of this study was to provide for a means of gathering data from secondary school principals in Hawaii relating to their perceptions of educational needs, and to provide for an analysis of their perceptions of needs. Such an analysis would provide a start in the decision making process that, hopefully, would lead to an upgrading of the educational environment in Hawaii and provide for a more meaningful, relevant, and quality education for the public school students of Hawaii. The findings of the study should give administrators an insight to the problems encountered by other administrators and eliminate duplication of effort in the decision making process in the planning for change in an effort to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the educational process. The problem in this study was to determine the educational needs in Hawaii as perceived by secondary school administrators of public schools in Hawaii based on their observations of the operations at their educational units. The entire population of secondary public school administrators were involved in this study. A four page questionnaire containing fifty questions that were answerable on a Likert type scale was sent to each of the administrators. The questionnaire covered pupil services and counseling, educational programs, school personnel, financing of education, courses and scheduling and comments. The response rate to the questionnaire was seventy-six percent. On the whole, school administrators perceived that their schools were above average in providing an educational program to meet the needs of students, parents, and community; but felt that change still needed to be implemented. They felt that the counselors were doing the best they possibly could, which was a fair job with an insufficient number of counselors, but that the job could be done better if there were more counselors. The administrators ranked absenteeism, class cutting, tardiness, insubordination, smoking, and fighting as the most pressing student problems in order of importance, respectively. They also ranked language arts, social studies, math, vocational education, fine arts, and science as needing to be upgraded, in order of importance, respectively. Some administrators whose schools used double periods perceived that periods were too long and needed to be shortened, and some administrators whose programs used single periods reported that the periods were too short and needed to be lengthened, especially for certain subjects. The use of a quarter system might be able to partially solve this problem and allow for longer periods because one or two less subjects could be taught during the same day. The administrators were perceived to be favorable to granting of credit for courses on a semester credit basis. Some administrators reported that instead of a strict adherence to the present teachers' contract and the present teacher-pupil ratio, with less strings and red tape and more teachers, a better job could be done by the administrators and teachers to provide for a better and quality education to the public school students in Hawaii.