ERIC Number: ED229487
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-Jun
Reference Count: 0
Vision, Action and Commitment: Some Limits in Our Assumptions about Improving Schools. The DTA Final Report. Documentation and Technical Assistance in Urban Schools.
Wilson, Thomas A.
This paper, written by the director of the Documentation and Technical Assistance Project (DTA), reviews lessons learned from this project for enhancing problem solving capacities of urban schools, and assesses some of the reasons that the project was terminated ahead of schedule by the National Institute of Education. In the first chapter the vision and ideology underlying the DTA are explored, and the project developers' commitment to social change through educational problem solving is described. Chapter II deals with the author's own background and involvement in social action programs, linking his experiences to the assumptions upon which the DTA was created. The third chapter reviews problems faced by DTA project designers and technical assistance personnel, including: (1) the confounding of inquiry and demonstration in the project's design; (2) applicability of the model being tested; (3) the ability to generalize concepts which arise from very specific strategies; (4) insufficient involvement of practitioners; (5) problems with long term face-to-face technical assistance efforts; (6) exaggerated expectations as to the range of problems that can be addressed at the local school level; and (7) the idea that conceptual problems can be solved through organizational change. The concluding chapter examines the function of assumptions in research and innovation and the melding of practitioner issues with research concerns. (GC)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC. School Capacity for Problem Solving Group.
Authoring Institution: Center for New Schools, Inc., Chicago, IL.
Identifiers: Documentation and Technical Assistance Project