AN EXAMINATION OF TEACHERSâ€™ PERCEPTIONS OF THE DIFFICULTY IN TEACHING THE TEXAS ESSESSENTIAL KNOWLEDGES AND SKILLS AND THE STATE OF TEXAS ASSESSMENTS OF ACADEMIC READINESS TEST RESULTS: IMPLICATIONS FOR INSTRUCTIONAL LEADERSHIP AND TEACHER PREPARATION PROGRAMS
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This study focused on teacher effectiveness. This research investigation attempted to determine if a teacher’s perceived ability to teach the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) affected student achievement as measured on the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) for third and fourth grade reading and math. By examining teachers’ perceptions regarding their perceived preparedness to teach the TEKS and achievement of their students as measured on STAAR, school leaders can design a script for academic interventions. Significant numbers of economically disadvantaged students have low academic achievement in reading and math performance as measured by state assessments, such as the STAAR. Research participants in this study were limited to one elementary school located in a large urban school district in Southeast Texas. Descriptive statistics were used to analyze archival data of the 2012-2013 third and fourth grade STAAR math and reading results by investigating whether teacher perceptions affected student achievement. A quantitative method was utilized to see if patterns existed between teacher perceptions of their perceived preparedness to teach the TEKS with the achievement of their students on STAAR. A qualitative method was used to document the responses to interview questions that third and fourth grade teachers reported regarding their perceptions of the TEKS and its affect on their students’ achievement. By gaining a better understanding of teacher perceptions, school leaders may support student learning by first supporting teacher learning. In addition to supporting teacher and student growth through data-driven professional development activities, this research may also have implications for measuring the effectiveness of school leaders, teacher education programs, and mentor programs. In this study, the professional development, ongoing teacher support and the many other continuous interventions affected the overall results of the study, and therefore this study was inconclusive and the researcher is unable to determine if teacher perceptions of the Student Expectations impact student achievement.