Volume 20 (2013)
Educators' Evaluation of the Quality of the Literate Environment in Caribbean Classrooms
This study examines ratings of the quality of the classrooom literacy environment by 47 graduate-level literacy teaching candidates (primarily classroom teachers enrolled in a master's programme) to determine the extent to which the teachers viewed the classrooms as literacy rich, and whether a link existed between the financial resources available to a country, as well as its human well-being rating and such evaluations. Using the Classroom literacy Environment Profile (Wolferberger, Reutzel, Sudweeks, & Fawson, 2004), candidates provided quantitative evaluations of an observed environment. Means tests involving two One-Way ANOVAs were used to determine the extent to which candidates differed in their ratings based on the Economic Status (ES) of the country in which they worked, and based on the Human Development Index (HDI) of the said countries. Regression analysis was used to determine the influence of several variables combined: classroom level, school type, school locale, HDI, and ES, on teacher ratings. Qualitative comments by candidates were used to clarify findings from their quantitative ratings. The results are explored in light of how teachers can be assisted in navigating the difference between what the literature says works and the specific classroom situations they face.
Keywords: Literacy Achievement; Classroom Environment; Teacher Attitudes; Programme Evaluation; Rating Scales; Economic Factors; Social Factors; Caribbean