Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Donald C. Weaver

Second Advisor

Dr. Ken Simon

Third Advisor

Dr. Dale Brethower


A needs statement was developed that stressed the need for improvement in the effectiveness of advisory councils, both in the U.S. and South Australia. The purposes of the study were to develop and validate two models, one depicting current U.S. advisory council training and non-training practices, and the other a model for the training of school councils in South Australia.

A review of the literature on group functioning and a review of the research on advisory council effectiveness, together with a review of U.S. advisory council training and non-training practices and the writer's knowledge of the South Australian situation, formed the basis for the development of these models. The model depicting current U.S. training and non-training practices (the "U.S. Model") categorized practices into six different "levels", each level being differentiated from the next based upon its potential in overcoming ineffective practices and procedures, and insignificant output of advisory councils.

The model for the training of school councils in South Australia (the "S.A. Model") consists of five components: a school councillors handbook; statewide, regional, and cluster conferences with integrated workshops; a principal and chairperson workshop program; a "total package for one council" training program; and a training of trainers program. In the case of the handbook, suggested content is outlined. For each training program, objectives of the training and a program outline were presented.

The U.S. and S.A. Models were validated by a panel of five members, each member being selected by a nominating team using three criteria as the basis for nomination, with selection by weight of nomination and availability. A fourteen statement questionnaire was used to elicit information from validators with the tabulation of validator responses and the recording of validator comments to each statement carried out via telephone interview. Constructive comments relevant to each model were discussed although no substantial structural alterations resulted to either model.

Overall, the accuracy of the U.S. Model and the appropriateness and potential of the S.A. Model, were validated. Recommendations to improve school council functioning and impact in South Australia concluded the dissertation.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access