Block scheduling as perceived by selected high school principals and teachers of math and science

Arnetta Keys Crosby


The purpose of this study was to investigate the perceptions held by administrators in Mississippi public high schools to see how their views may influence the type of scheduling format they use. It also investigated the perceptions and views of math and science teachers to see if there are differences in perceptions between them and if these differences of perceptions are related to the teaching process, school climate, and student achievement. Two surveys were constructed, one geared for administrators and one geared for teachers. The subjects consisted of all building principals in Mississippi public high schools who have implemented or are in the process of implementing a block schedule into their school's educational curriculums. Subjects also consisted of a sample of math and science teachers who teach in a block schedule model. A list of schools meeting these requirements was obtained from the Mississippi Department of Education. A survey was sent to approximately 83 school districts and 194 schools. The findings of this study indicate that administrators and teachers who are presently utilizing some type of block schedule in Mississippi public schools do not differ in their perceptions regarding the type of schedule used. This study further emphasized that the teaching process, school climate, and student achievement do not make a difference in the perceptions between administrators and teachers. However, there were some discrepancies between administrators' and teachers' beliefs about the amount of inservice training they received before they started teaching in a block and while they were teaching in a block. The teachers felt that they received much less training than what was reported by their administrators. Even though the administrators and teachers sometimes held different beliefs about their inservice training, they were generally consistent in their beliefs that block scheduling has positively impacted their schools, and they were generally consistent in their beliefs about not wanting to return to a traditional schedule.