ERIC Number: ED332343
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
Educational Reform in the 1980s: Explaining Some Surprising Success. NCEL Occasional Paper No. 5.
Many of the first-wave reform initiatives of the 1980s have been successfully implemented on a widespread basis and are having an important influence on the schooling process. The reform movement was expected to fail because of strong financial, political, and organizational arguments. Reform initiatives were said to be insufficiently funded, lacking a comprehensive approach, employing inappropriate policy mechanisms and tools, and giving responses that were too indirect to be effective. Professional intransigence, deep-rooted norms in organizational culture, and the institutional, bureaucratic nature of loosely linked systems in schools also contributed to the movement's expected failure. Speculations on reasons for the reform movement's success are: (1) efforts built improvements on existing organizational structures; (2) changes rendered schools more receptive to reform than in the past; (3) arguments on organizational propositions were incongruent with the current school systems; and (4) shifts in values had redefined the context in which reform was enacted. (66 references) (EJS)
Descriptors: Achievement Gains, Educational Change, Elementary Secondary Education, Evaluation, Excellence in Education, Failure, Organizational Effectiveness, Performance Factors, Program Effectiveness, School Restructuring, Success
Publication Sales, National Center for Educational Leadership, Harvard Graduate School of Education, 443 Gutman Library, 6 Appian Way, Cambridge, MA 02138 ($4.00).
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: National Center for Educational Leadership, Nashville, TN.