Understanding School Administrator Influence on Co-Taught Classrooms in the Middle School

Darrell Carson and Christopher Tienken

Seton Hall University



Co-teaching is a service delivery model that usually involves a general education teacher paired with a special education teacher in the mainstream classroom setting. Both teachers can coordinate instruction to meet the needs of a heterogeneous class of students that includes students with special needs. This study examined how teachers understood their experiences in co-taught classrooms as they worked to meet the needs of all students and how administrators understood their roles to administer the model. This included examining their perspectives about the co-teaching model and the relationships that are formed between co-teachers. We conducted a descriptive study that used qualitative research methods to understand the perspectives of school administrators and teachers involved in co-taught settings.  The data collection method was semi-structured interviews. Participants consisted of administrators and teachers in order to develop a cross section of perspectives. The site for this study was John H. Brown Middle School located in a culturally diverse urban neighborhood.

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