ERIC Number: ED029811
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1968-Aug-1
Reference Count: 0
The Innovation Team; A Model for Change in Inner City Schools?
Cernius, Vytas; Sherburne, Mary Lela
Institutional behavior can be seen as a dynamic balance between driving and restraining forces operating oppositionally. To shift the balance toward change in the 24 inner-city schools of the Model School Division, this experiment in innovation trained 300 District of Columbia public school teachers in new curriculum materials and methodologies during two 6-week summer sessions. Fifteen teachers, relieved of classroom duties, collaborated with an outside change-agent and a behavioral scientist in a team for internal change. Five stages can be discerned marking the progress of the team as a group and working organization. (1) Although it only served teachers who requested assistance, the team experienced immediate success in bringing new ideas into the school system. (2) Modifying the leader's authority, the team became a genuine participatory decisionmaking group. (3) During a period of self-evaluation, successes (in 60 workshops using the team's innovative teaching methods in the process of teaching teachers and in improved and experimental classroom environments) and failures were considered. The team met resistance to departure from tradition and faced the danger that restraining forces, when challenged, become more powerfully inhibitive. (4) The struggle of dealing with its success was recognizing its limited ability to meet requests following its coordination of student expressions of feelings and experiences regarding the King assassination riots. (5) Group members became leaders of other groups in the 1968 Summer Institute. (DL)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Education Development Center, Inc., Newton, MA.; Office of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Education Development Center, Inc., Newton, MA.
Identifiers: District of Columbia Public Schools