- The purpose of this study was to assess the attitudes of teachers at the
elementary, middle, and high school levels toward student rights and
classroom management. Specifically this study was designed to analyze the
effect Judicious Discipline: A Constitutional Perspective for School Rules and
Decisions had upon teacher attitudes toward student rights and behaviors in
The instrument to measure teacher attitudes toward student rights and
classroom management was constructed from two separate attitude
inventories: the Minnesota Teacher Attitude Inventory (Cook, Leeds, and
Callis, 1952) and the Questionnaire on Teacher Attitudes (Menacker and
Pascarella, 1983). The attitude inventory was field-tested and submitted to the
DELPHI panel to establish content validity. Participants in this study included the teaching staffs of ten elementary
schools, four middle schools, and five high schools located in Corvallis,
Carlton, Beaverton, and Lincoln County, Oregon. Respondents to the study
were inservice teachers who attended workshops based on the concepts of
Judicious Discipline and presented by the author, Dr. Forrest Gathercoal.
Pretest inventories were administered immediately prior to the presentations.
Posttest inventories were administered six months after the workshop.
Two null hypotheses were tested to determine whether there was a
significant difference in attitudes toward student rights and classroom
management among elementary, middle, and high school teachers and
between pretest and posttest data. The hypotheses were tested for
significance at the .05 level.
Null hypothesis one which stated there was no significant difference
among elementary, middle, and high school teachers in attitudes
toward student rights and classroom management was retained.
Null hypothesis two which stated there was no significant difference
between data gathered on the pretest and postest was retained.
Descriptive data gathered through interviews did reveal an
attitudinal change in some respondents as a result of workshops
reviewing concepts of Judicious Discipline: A Constitutional
Perspective for School Rules and Decisions, (Gathercoal, 1987). All
respondents to the survey were provided with copies of Judicious
Discipline to be used as a reference during time of the study. Trends manifested by analysis of means from elementary, middle, and
high school teachers failed to indicate consistent differences at the .05 level
among the three groups. Similarly, trends manifested by analysis of pretest
and posttest results did not reveal significant differences at the .05 level.
However, descriptive data collected through interviews with respondents
indicated high levels of interest and practical applicability of Judicious
Discipline (Gathercoal, 1986).