ERIC Number: ED386826
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1995-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Challenge to Change: The Memphis Experience with School-Based Decision Making Revisited. Interrupted Continuity.
Etheridge, Carol Plata; Hall, Mary L. Aden
In 1989, seven Memphis City Schools (MCS) implemented school-based decision making (SBDM). This paper describes outcomes associated with shared decision-making efforts during the pilot-study years (1989-92) and following years. Data were obtained from participant observation, interviews, administration of The Tennessee School Climate Inventory (TSCI) to teachers and administrators, process analysis, school reports, and student-achievement test scores. The data illustrated the following patterns: (1) Democratic leadership was the only leadership style related to sustained increased student achievement for at least 3 years; (2) democratic leadership can be critical in the implementation of SBDM and faculty retention; (3) faculty retention is also affected by excluding teachers from the decision-making process and by principals who do not support the SBDM process; (4) parent participation can be hurt by uncommitted school professionals; (5) lack of program and administrative continuity can negatively affect instruction and student learning; and (6) teacher empowerment can contribute to improved student-achievement scores in a relatively short time. Six of the seven schools lacked continuity in democratic leadership and SBDM, and district-level or school-level change interrupted whatever improvement had occurred. Finally, when SBDM is not implemented as teachers understand it, faculty retention and student learning are at risk. Five tables are included. (Contains 18 references.) (LMI)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Memphis Univ., TN. Center for Research in Educational Policy.