ERIC Number: ED108980
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1975
Reference Count: 0
Nations, School Districts, and Schools: Are There Schooling Effects Anywhere?
Bidwell, Charles E.
By recounting findings from three studies, it is shown that the ecological approach to education has the potential of promoting understanding of relationships between society, schooling, and life opportunities. The ecological approach means that one must attempt to see whether and how the organization of schools, school districts, or national systems of education may transform environmental inputs into aggregate outputs of cognitive attainment. The common assumption that cognitive learning is important in contemporary societies, both for persons and society, leads to an assumption that there are thresholds of learning below which there are very limited chances for a reasonably full share of the society's goods and participation in its institutions. Thus, if we want to foster equality of life chances in the United States, then at the very least we must maintain a system of schools in which the essential elements that affect opportunities to learn and to achieve academically are distributed as equally as possible. Because what transpires in the classroom may have substantial consequences for what and how much students learn, and consequently their positions in society, an ecological view of schooling is necessary. (Author/ND)
Descriptors: Classroom Environment, Cognitive Ability, Disadvantaged, Ecology, Educational Environment, Educational Experience, Educational Theories, Elementary Secondary Education, Employment Potential, Labor Market, Organizational Effectiveness, School Districts, School Organization, Socialization
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Vice Presidential Address given at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Washington, D.C., April 1975)