ERIC Number: ED203530
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-Dec
Reference Count: 0
The Field Agent in School Improvement: Client Contributions to the Role.
Corbett, H. Dickson, III
The role of educational field agents was examined as part of a longitudinal study of external assistance in school change. Six employees of Research for Better Schools (RBS), working as change agents in five schools, served as subjects for the study. Data were collected through extensive observations and interviews. The field agents performed several functions in addition to the technical ones they had anticipated. These included expanding their technical responsibilities, adjusting the change process, seeking endorsements, mediating interpersonal tensions, and providing clerical services. The additional functions were necessitated by a scarcity of school resources, tension among school staff, and organizational instability. Moreover, school staff expectations for "linker" behavior tended to maintain the expanded role once assumed. The first section of the paper provides background for the study; the second section contains a description of the research procedures; the third section examines the functions that linkers had to perform at the school sites; and the fourth section identifies factors which made these functions necessary. (Author/MLF)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Research for Better Schools, Inc., Philadelphia, PA.
Identifiers: Field Agents
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Eastern Educational Research Association (Philadelphia, PA, March 11-14, 1981).