ERIC Number: ED419065
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1997
Reference Count: N/A
Integrated Governance as a Reform Strategy in the Chicago Public Schools. Publication Series No. 10.
Wong, Kenneth K.; Dreeben, Robert; Lynn, Laurence E., Jr.; Sunderman, Gail L.
Decentralization is no longer the dominant reform strategy in the Chicago (Illinois) Public Schools. The Chicago School Reform Amendatory Act of 1995 redesigns the school governance arrangement so that power and authority are now integrated among city officials, school boards, local school councils, and a Chief Executive Officer. To examine how the governance redesign facilitates the administration of the schools, this study uses a comprehensive institutional perspective. A survey questionnaire was developed to evaluate the performance of various key institutional actors: the governor of Illinois, the Democratic and Republican lawmakers of the General Assembly, Chicago's mayor, the Board of Education and the Chicago Reform Board of Trustees, the public schools central administration, and the Chicago Teachers' Union. About 100 members of the policy community completed this survey for 2 time periods, and interviews were conducted with 18 central office administrators, 24 principals, and other school board members and administrations. A review of their attitudes concludes that integrated governance shows promise as a strategy to improve urban school systems by reducing competing authorities and allowing the board of education and administrators to implement their educational visions. Appointed administrators often have an advantage over elected officials because they bring management expertise to the school system. Whether integrated governance can be widely adopted in other urban districts depends on many factors. Chicago is the only district where mayoral commitment is highly visible and where political capital is used to improve the system. Further research is needed to better understand how this can work in other urban districts and to identify the crucial components of the redesigned system that are transferable. (Contains 2 figures and 15 tables.) (SLD)
Descriptors: Administrators, Boards of Education, City Officials, Decentralization, Educational Administration, Educational Change, Elementary Secondary Education, Integrated Activities, Power Structure, Surveys, Tables (Data), Teachers, Urban Schools
Electronic version: http://www.temple.edu/LSS
Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Mid-Atlantic Lab. for Student Success, Philadelphia, PA.; National Research Center on Education in the Inner Cities, Philadelphia, PA.
Identifiers: Chicago Public Schools IL; Reform Efforts