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Schools as Organizations and Teacher Professionalization. Chapter 6. Schools as Organizations. “The schools that an individual attends shape not only his or her life chances but his or her perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors.”

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Schools as Organizations and Teacher Professionalization


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    Presentation Transcript
    1. Schools as Organizations and Teacher Professionalization Chapter 6

    2. Schools as Organizations • “The schools that an individual attends shape not only his or her life chances but his or her perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors.” • Education in the United States is one of the nation’s largest businesses, $273 billion enterprise for elementary and secondary education,50 million students

    3. The Structure of U.S. Education • “To understand education, one must look beyond the classroom itself and the interaction between teachers and pupils to the larger world where different interest groups compete with each other in terms of ideology, finances, and power.” • School processes, the way in which school cultures are created and maintained • U.S. system decentralized, equal opportunity

    4. Governance • 50 separate state school systems, because federal government made no claims of authority over education • Good part of education paid for by local property taxes, tax payers have much to say about how schools within districts operate, through community school boards

    5. Governance • Federal government more involved since the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s, led to founding of United States Department of Education in the late 1970s

    6. Size and Degree of Centralization • As school system has been growing, it has become more centralized • In the1930s, there were 128,000 public school districts, by the late 1980s, less than 16,000…elimination of single teacher schools (143,000 in the 1930s, only 777 in 1980s) • Elementary schools average of 91 in 1930s to 450 in 1980s, secondary schools from 195 to 513 in 1980s

    7. Centralization • Average size of classrooms has declined, elementary 19 from 34, and secondary 16 from 22 • As districts have become larger, superintendents have become more powerful, teachers fewer opportunities to make fewer decisions regarding curriculum, policy, and employment

    8. Student Composition • Urban school districts have mostly minority students, suburban populations often less than 5% minorities • Schools are more diverse at the same time there is increasing residential segregation • Few academic impediments to high school graduation, social and personal impediments

    9. Private Schools • 28,000 elementary and secondary schools with 5.6 million students • 25% of schools, 12% of students, mean student enrollment of 234, only 7% have more than 600 students • Private schools not consolidating, but growing remarkably • Most private schools have religious affiliation

    10. Private Schools • Very little regulation by state authorities, other than safety regulations and civil rights • Most private schools on the east and west coasts • Roman Catholic schools are declining, 46% decline from 1965 to 1983 • Most private schools attract students who are more affluent and have a commitment to education

    11. International Comparisons • Most countries have a National Ministry of Education or a Department of Education that has considerable influence over the whole system • Most other systems not inclusive, but have rigorous academic rites of passage

    12. Great Britain • Early attempts to have a national system, opposed by the Church of England and the Roman Catholics, national system begun in 1870, but the Church of England maintained its schools, so a dual system • In 1944 the Education Act created a national system, free primary and secondary schools for all children, the system recreated the class system by channeling students into different kinds of schools, elitist in nature

    13. Great Britain • In 1988, the Reform Act established a national curriculum and national assessment goals, which led to significant changes in Britain and Wales • More open and less stratified than before, but still elitist, race and ethnic stratified

    14. France • Central government controls the educational system right down to the classroom level…two public school systems, one for the elite and one for ordinary people • Highly stratified at elementary, secondary and postsecondary levels • Efforts to democratize the system have not been successful • About a third go on to higher education, but only 15% graduate from university

    15. The Former Soviet Union • In 1991 the Soviet Union abruptly ceased to exist • Educational system after the Bolshevik Revolution was highly stratified, centralized and deeply ideological • In reality, the system was stratified with high party members’ children receiving university preparation and workers’ children receiving a poor education leading to factory system

    16. Japan • First national system of education in 1880s under the central authority of the Ministry of Education, Science, and Culture • After World War II, compulsory education increased from six to nine years with democratic principles of equality of opportunity

    17. Japan • Education system is highly competitive • Japanese students excel in every measured international standard both for top students and the other 95% of the students • High work ethic, double system (Juku), high value on moral education

    18. Germany • Selects and sorts children at a young age leading to a tripartite system at the secondary level, Hauptschule, Realschule, Gymnasium • Close connection between business and schools, seen as a model of vocational education • University education is state supported but highly competitive, only 15% complete

    19. School Processes and School Cultures • “The school is a unity of interacting personalities. The personalities of all who meet in the school are bound together in an organic relation. The life of the whole is in all its parts, yet the whole could not exist without any of its parts. The school is a social organism.”

    20. School Processes and Culture • Despotisms in a state of perilous equilibrium (Willard Waller), vulnerable authority structures…without the compliance of students, the exercise of authority would be virtually impossible • Teachers’ pedagogic goals often difficult to reconcile with students’ social goals, and administrators’ organizational goals shared by neither teachers nor students

    21. School Processes and Culture • “Because schools are so deeply political, effecting change within them is very difficult. Groups and individuals have vested interests.” • Bureaucracies characterized by explicit rules and regulations that promote predictability and regularity and minimize personal relationships, can suppress individualism and spontaneity

    22. School Processes and Cultures • “Schools, as they are now organized, are shaped by a series of inherent contradictions that can develop cultures that are conflictual and even stagnant.” • Four elements of change: conflict in necessary, new behaviors must be learned, team building must extend to the entire school, process and content are interrelated and how they go about change is important

    23. Teachers, Teaching, and Professionalization • Teachers are the key players in education but their voices are seldom heard and their knowledge is terribly underutilized, and even devalued

    24. Who Becomes Teachers? • Five to one females to males at elementary level, one to one at the secondary level • Nine out of ten are white, and most are middle aged • By 2002, 3 million teachers will be needed, many new teachers needed because of rising number of retirements • Teachers tend not to be strong academically, and those who are, tend to leave teaching

    25. The Nature of Teaching • “The central contradiction of teaching is that ‘teachers have to deal with a group of students and teach them something and, at the same time, deal with each child as an individual.’” • Rewards are derived from students, the only positive feedback many teachers get • Very little is known about the links between teaching and learning

    26. The Nature of Teaching • The key in teaching is the exercise of control • The “dailiness of teaching” speaks to the rhythms of the days, weeks, seasons • Few professions are as routinized and as creative, with few rules to what it takes to be a good teacher, one may be a sense of humor

    27. Teacher Professionalization • Only partially professionalized, especially at the elementary level • Teacher socialization is very limited • Difficult to think of ways to educate inspirational teachers • Clearly a correlation between higher levels of preparation and professionalization