Author Ho, Boon Tiong
Title Secondary school teachers' perceptions of the characteristics of good schools.
Institute Thesis (M.Ed.) National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University
Year 1997
Supervisor Low, Guat Tin
Call no. LA1239.6 Ho
Many research studies on effective schools have yielded lists of good or effective schools. However, these characteristics were identified mainly by the researchers, the principals or the local educational authorities. Very few studies were done where the characteristics of effective schools were identified by the teachers. This present study addresses this lack of information concerning teachers' perceptions of the characteristics of good schools and aims to identify what teachers in Singapore secondary schools perceive to be characteristics of good schools and the level of relative importance they perceive each characteristics to have. Four research questions were posed.

This exploratory study was carried out in two phases. The construct, teachers' perceptions of the relative importance of the characteristics of good schools, was measured by the ordinal rating scores on a 5-point Likert scale. These formed the dependent variables. The independent variables used were gender, the type of school and the length of service. Two hundred and twenty teachers were surveyed in Phase One and another 403 teachers sampled in Phase Two.

One major finding is that teachers consistently perceived the STAFF dimension to be an important characteristic of good schools; particularly referring to principals who were fair and firm in making decisions and who distributed duties fairly among teachers. Another significant finding is that teachers with length of service of 15 or more years consistently rated all dimensions (except CURRICULUM dimension) of lesser importance than did teachers with "low" (0-4 years) or "medium" (5-14 years) length of service. Gender was found to have no effect on the dependent variables.