ERIC Number: ED362838
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1993-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
Assessment and Decision Making in Delta. Technical Report No. 591.
Stephens, Diane; And Others
This report presents findings from Delta, one of four school districts examined in a series of case studies that investigated the complex relationship between reading assessment and instruction. The research was situated in the context of school decision making. Teachers, principals, parents, students, and central office staff were interviewed to determine how decisions were made in the district and how that decision-making process influenced assessment and instruction. In addition, teachers were observed, and discussions were conducted with them about the observations. A constant comparative method was used to identify patterns in the data. In Delta, assessment-as-test had a major impact on curriculum and instruction. The superintendent was concerned about the "low" test scores of the students in his district and wanted to raise those scores. A number of decisions had been made to accomplish this (e.g., standards had been set for passing from one grade to another; teachers were asked to modify their teaching so that scores on particular test items would improve). There was a considerable amount of tension in this district over the way these "top down" decisions had been made. There were also, however, a number of other decision-making structures operating: district-wide committees, for example, that were charged with writing curriculum. Delta seemed to be a district in transition in which both "old" ways (top-down decision making, assessment-as-test driving instruction) and new ways (collaboration between teachers and administration, teacher decision making) sometimes conflict with each other. (One table and two figures of data are included; a letter to prospective schools describing the research project, and a list of interview and observation codes are attached.) (Author/RS)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Center for the Study of Reading, Urbana, IL.