The standards movement, while new in the current NCLB iteration, has been a part of education for almost the last half century (Popham, 2001; Sirotnik, 2004). According to several researchers (e.g., DiPaola & Walther-Thomas, 2003; Fullan, 2001; Lashley & Boscardin, 2003; Marsh, 2000; Villa & Thousand, 2000), there have been significant changes in the roles that school leaders must fulfill to implement a standards-based educational accountability system. The requirements of NCLB will not be a “passing fad” and so will affect the manner in which special education administrators conduct their work (Hochschild, 2003). As it stands, districts and schools are viewed as an amalgam of complex relationships (Harry, Sturges, & Klinger, 2005) that come together as learning communities to meet accountability targets for all students. The requirements for building a learning community involve the skills of collaboration and empowerment of others. Apparently, developing productive partnerships will exceed the previously defined narrow interpretation of collaboration with families and other professionals (Crockett, 2002). Standards-based accountability practices which disaggregate data based on specific subgroups, one of which is students with disabilities, are a result of the concern that exclusion of students from testing distorts the efficacy of educational reform efforts (Heubert & Hauser, 1999; McDonnell, McLaughlin, & Morison, 1997; Schulte & Villwock, 2004). However, concerns have also been raised regarding the validity of conclusions drawn from large-scale accountability data (Schulte & Villwock, 2004; Ysseldyke & Bielinski, 2002). Hargreaves (2003) concluded that “the rightful pursuit of higher standards has generated into a counter productive obsession with soulless standardization” (p. 82).
Bakken, J.P., O’Brian, M. and Shelden, D.L. (2006), "Changing Roles and Responsibilities of Special Education Administrators", Obiakor, F.E., Rotatori, A.F. and Burkhardt, S. (Ed.) Current Perspectives in Special Education Administration (Advances in Special Education, Vol. 17), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 1-15. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0270-4013(06)17001-4Download as .RIS
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