ERIC Number: EJ834157
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Nov
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 24
Planning for Learning: An Exploration of Reception Teachers' Attitudes and Practices around the South Australian School Entry Assessment Policy
Lees, Patrick J.
International Education Journal, v8 n2 p145-154 Nov 2007
The South Australian Education Department introduced the School Entry Assessment (SEA) Policy in 2001 to help teachers assess young learners and plan relevant learning events, to help collect information about South Australian education from Pre-School to Year 3, and to facilitate collaboration within and between educational and social institutions. Implementation of the School Entry Assessment (SEA) Policy was supported in a limited number of schools by the School Entry Assessment Mentor Project (SEAMP), which reported generally positive results and concluded that mentoring was an effective way to support new policy implementation. However, the SEA Mentor Project was discontinued in 2005, and it remains unclear how teachers and schools that were not mentored are implementing the School Entry Assessment (SEA) Policy, how they are feeling about its implementation, what training and supports they have received, or how they are using the accompanying documentation. This exploratory qualitative study involved comparative analysis of interview responses from eight Reception teachers currently working in South Australian public (state) schools. It was found that positive attitudes towards the School Entry Assessment (SEA) Policy have not necessarily translated into a thorough policy implementation in some schools; that the practices and attitudes of some teachers may be based on limited understandings about the aims of the School Entry Assessment (SEA) Policy; and that some Reception teachers may not be involving parents and caregivers in their considerations about the policy. It also appears that some teachers believe the School Entry Assessment (SEA) Policy only concerns the first year of school (Reception in South Australia), Data collected for this study lends weight to concerns about the disenfranchisement of teachers and about teachers' workloads, especially concerning non-teaching or administrative expectations, and suggests that more inclusive policy-development processes may engender more commitment to shared goals. The argument is made that new policy must include an adequate budget for initial training and ongoing support to facilitate a successful and thorough policy implementation, and that the savings made in initial expenditure may be a false economy, leading to less efficient long-term use of limited public resources.
Descriptors: Program Effectiveness, Foreign Countries, Comparative Analysis, Teacher Attitudes, Educational Practices, Program Implementation, Policy Analysis, Diagnostic Teaching, Delivery Systems, Interviews, Social Networks, Developmental Continuity, Articulation (Education), Change Strategies
Australian and New Zealand Comparative and International Education Society. ANZCIES Secretariat, Curtin University, Box U1987, Perth, WA Australia. Tel: +61-8-9266-7106; Fax: +61-8-9266-3222; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://www.iejcomparative.org
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia