ERIC Number: ED449559
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2000
Making School Reform Work: A "Mineralogical" Theory of School Modifiability. Fastback 467.
Sternberg, Robert J.
This booklet proposes a different approach to understanding schools, school change, and why attempts at change run into so many difficulties. The text is divided into six parts. It examines issues in school reform and restructuring and offers what is called a Mineralogical Theory of school modifiability. This theory posits that there are eight types of schools, each one correlating to a mineral in its degree of openness to change. For example, the rusted-iron school has little self-efficacy and scant desire for change or even the appearance of change. Conversely, a diamond-in-the-rough school is high in both its desire for change and appearance of change and possesses a perceived self-efficacy. This mineralogical theory meshes with the theory of context modifiability, which states that the success of an intervention program depends not only on the program but also on the context in which the program is administered. If, for example, a school is in need of restructuring or any other kind of modification, yet is only weakly modifiable, the school must first become more modifiable. The booklet offers specific strategies for modifiability and presents in toto the School Characteristics Inventory, which assesses a school's contextual modifiability. (Contains 33 references.) (RJM)
Descriptors: Change Agents, Change Strategies, Educational Change, Elementary Secondary Education, Excellence in Education, Resistance to Change, School Restructuring
Phi Delta Kappa International, P.O. Box 789, Bloomington, IN 47402-0789. Tel: 800-766-1156 (Toll-free); Web site: http://www.pdkintl.org.
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Phi Delta Kappa Educational Foundation, Bloomington, IN.
Note: The Fastback series is published every spring and fall; current series editor is Donovan R. Walling. Sponsored by the Rochester, New York Chapter.