The School Based Support Program: An Evaluation of a Comprehensive School Reform Initiative in the State of Qatar
This study examines the development of a professional development (PD) model for teacher growth and learning that is embedded into the school context. The School based Support Program (SBSP), designed for the Qatari context, targets the practices, knowledge and skills of both school leadership and teachers in an attempt to improve student learning outcomes. Key aspects of the model include the development of learning communities among teachers, strong leadership that supports school improvement activities, and the use of research-based PD to improve teacher practices and student achievement. This paper further presents findings from an evaluation of this PD program. Based on an adaptation of Guskey’s evaluation of PD models, 100 teachers at the participating schools were selected for classroom observations and 40 took part in in-depth interviews to examine changed classroom practices. The impact of the PD program on student learning was also examined. Teachers’ practices and their students’ achievement in English, Arabic, mathematics and science were measured at the beginning and at the end of the intervention.