ERIC Number: ED427240
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1998-Aug
Contested Ground: Performance Accountability in Adult Basic Education. NCSALL Reports #1. Research Briefs.
This brief suggests that performance accountability offers the chance to refocus on what learners accomplish by participating in adult basic education (ABE) and to reorient every aspect of the system to achieve the best results. The 1966 Adult Education Act provides little guidance in developing performance accountability. Recent research describes literacy as multiple "literacies" rooted in particular social contexts. This change in definition shifts the focus even further from abstract skills to real-life practices. This conceptual change requires a revision of what performance means. Other issues include the following: definition of the purpose of literacy, accountability, fragmentary data on performance, and measurement tools that can collect more reliable accountability data. New initiatives are addressing performance accountability: the National Institute for Literacy's Equipped for the Future project, National Outcomes Reporting System, and other state and national level initiatives. Over the last few years, many states have been focusing on building capacity for program delivery. High performance or "learning organizations" from the business world may prove useful models for ABE. Four principles would enable the field to perform effectively and be held accountable for performance: agree on performances, develop mutual accountability relationships, build capacity to perform and be accountable, and create new tools to measure performance. This framework for future policy provides guidelines for future action. (YLB)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: National Center for the Study of Adult Learning and Literacy, Boston, MA.
Note: For the full report, see ED 423 450.