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Book part
Publication date: 12 July 2005

Diane Brook Napier

Most comparative education research has included investigation of dimensions of educational reform but not all research in the field has focused concertedly on reform in…

Abstract

Most comparative education research has included investigation of dimensions of educational reform but not all research in the field has focused concertedly on reform in relation to the realities in practice. In the latter half of the 20th century comparativists underscored the need to investigate implementation issues, not just reform policies, as had often been the case in earlier comparative research, since time had shown that political processes did not always equate with educational outcomes. Reforms can be thwarted altogether, significantly modified or mediated in practice, embraced with qualification, or differentially implemented across regions or levels within a given country. Reform implementation might produce intended and unintended change (for better or for worse); or no change at all might be the outcome; or change might occur ahead of reform. Some of the most fascinating findings in comparative research are dichotomous considerations of change such as policy versus practice, ideal versus real, de facto change versus de jure change, intended and unintended outcomes of reform, grass-roots (bottom–up) versus centralized (top–down) reforms, and de facto change legitimized-after-the-fact through reform or new policy.

Details

Global Trends in Educational Policy
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-76231-175-0

Article
Publication date: 1 January 1993

David H. Reilly

Attempts to reform educational policies and practices have beenincreasing in recent decades. Since the early 1980s, both the UnitedStates and the Soviet Union have engaged…

Abstract

Attempts to reform educational policies and practices have been increasing in recent decades. Since the early 1980s, both the United States and the Soviet Union have engaged in significant efforts to improve and/or restructure their educational systems. Analyses and contrasts these efforts in terms of the reform goals, philosophies, procedures, outcome criteria and personnel practices for each country. An assessment of the success of the reform effort is provided.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 7 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 April 1989

Bonnie G. Gratch

More than five years have passed since A Nation at Risk was published in 1983 by then‐Secretary of Education Terrance Bell's National Commission on Excellence in…

Abstract

More than five years have passed since A Nation at Risk was published in 1983 by then‐Secretary of Education Terrance Bell's National Commission on Excellence in Education. Those years have seen the publication of an enormous body of both primary material, composed of research reports, essays, and federal and state reform proposals and reports; and secondary material, composed of summaries and reviews of the original reform reports and reports about effective programs that are based on reform recommendations. This annotated bibliography seeks to identify, briefly describe, and organize in a useful manner those publications dealing with K‐12 education reform and improvement. The overall purposes of this article are to bring organization to that list, and also to trace relationships and influences from the federal initiatives to the states and professional associations, and from there to the school districts and individual schools.

Details

Reference Services Review, vol. 17 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0090-7324

Article
Publication date: 3 May 2013

Gerald W. Fry and Hui Bi

The purpose of this paper is to analyze critically the evolution of educational reform in Thailand. Three major phases are identified. The special focus of the paper is an…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to analyze critically the evolution of educational reform in Thailand. Three major phases are identified. The special focus of the paper is an assessment of the third reform which began with the passage of the Office of the National Education Commission (ONEC) (2002).

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology for the study is mixed methods including document analysis, direct participant observation, and compilation of major statistical performance indicators from diverse sources.

Findings

The success of the most recent reform has been clearly mixed. Major structural and legal changes have occurred but overall system performance remains disappointingly low, despite large Thai educational expenditures as a percent of national budget and the presence of much impressive educational leadership talent. The paper identifies what is called the “Thai educational paradox”. The essence of the paradox is Thailand’s failure to achieve its educational potential. The paper identifies key factors explaining the paradox.

Originality/value

The paper has significant theoretical, policy, and practical implications. From a theoretical perspective, the study confirms the persistence of strong regional disparities and a lack of fiscal neutrality associated with a neoliberal model of capitalistic development. From a practical policy perspective, it is imperative for Thailand to improve the overall quality of its educational system and to reduce regional disparities. There have been numerous studies of each of Thailand’s three phases of reform, but this paper’s original contribution is its presentation of a historical, interdisciplinary, and integrated perspective on the evolution of educational reform and the many obstacles associated with its implementation.

Article
Publication date: 16 January 2009

Yin Cheong Cheng

This paper aims to analyse the reform syndrome, bottle‐neck effects and their impacts on teachers and school education in the last ten years and highlight the direction of…

4114

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to analyse the reform syndrome, bottle‐neck effects and their impacts on teachers and school education in the last ten years and highlight the direction of new developments.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper examines educational reforms in Hong Kong in the last decade.

Findings

Echoing the international trends of educational reforms, Hong Kong, as an international city, has initiated a series of educational reforms in the past decades. The experiences of educational reforms in Hong Kong may provide a good case for understanding the dynamics of educational reforms and drawing theoretical and practical implications for research, policy formulation and implementation not only in Hong Kong but also in other international communities.

Originality/value

From the analysis of the reform syndrome, particularly the bottle‐neck effect, there should be seven key aspects for policy‐makers, educators and stakeholders in Hong Kong to address the emergent key issues in educational reforms and work for the further development of their education system in the coming few years.

Details

International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 23 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 11 May 2007

Christopher Martin

The paper examines 15 years of basic educational reform in Mexico directed at improving scholastic performance, equity and education for all (EFA), through mainly…

Abstract

The paper examines 15 years of basic educational reform in Mexico directed at improving scholastic performance, equity and education for all (EFA), through mainly administrative measures, particularly decentralization. Taking a critical policy studies approach informed by anthropological examination of local educational processes, this chapter takes issue with scholarship that sees educational reforms in LDC's as the product of “decision makers” and the school reality as a deficit to be filled by “policy”. This perspective mirrors the characteristically top down approach of the very reform process it is supposed to be analyzing. The approach taken in this paper treats school district persons and institutions as active agents in their own right. More specifically the paper will argue that Mexican reforms toward EFA have been unable to transcend the very corporatist–personalistic structures it avowedly sought to reform. It has thus been largely ineffective in mobilizing forces for change, the goodwill, creativity and initiative of educators so important to its avowed aim of improving student scholastic performance. However, isolated examples of innovative uses of spaces opened by the reform offer ideas about how to reorient the reform in more productive directions.

Details

Education for All
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-7623-1441-6

Book part
Publication date: 13 December 2010

Eleoussa Polyzoi and Eduard Dneprov

This chapter examines the initiation of educational change in post-Soviet Russia, using the eight-factor change framework developed by Michael Fullan. Interviews were…

Abstract

This chapter examines the initiation of educational change in post-Soviet Russia, using the eight-factor change framework developed by Michael Fullan. Interviews were conducted with 24 key individuals, including members of the Ministry of Education, teacher educators, university researchers, and members of advocacy and school reform organizations. Important primary (government, policy, and school) documents related to the change process of educational transformation were also examined. The format for the interviews involved a common, open-ended unstructured questionnaire, upon which the researchers elaborated with additional probes as the interview unfolded. The interviews ranged from 1–2 hours in length; approximately 50–55 hours of material were recorded. Data analyses involved examination of the transcribed interviews, extensive notes, and documents acquired by the principal researcher. With a specific focus on decentralization reforms, the Russian experience was matched against the initiation stage of Fullan”s framework in order to understand Russia”s transformation as a “change” process. The data show that Fullan”s conceptual framework does clearly have utility for helping us understand events in Russia. However, we propose a revised framework, which is more consistent with the revolutionary rather than the evolutionary transformation and, therefore, better accounts for the dynamic character of dramatic and sudden change typical of Russia and other former Soviet countries.

Details

Post-Socialism is not Dead: (Re)Reading the Global in Comparative Education
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-85724-418-5

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 November 2020

Kang Zhao

Some studies have claimed that Chinese thinker Hu Shi (or Hu Shih) received and responded to John Dewey's educational ideas only at a theoretical level and did little for…

Abstract

Purpose

Some studies have claimed that Chinese thinker Hu Shi (or Hu Shih) received and responded to John Dewey's educational ideas only at a theoretical level and did little for education at a practical level. This paper reexamines Hu's reception of Dewey's ideas with a focus on how he used those ideas to solve China's educational and social problems during the late 1910s and 1920s.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper draws upon what Schriewer (2012) has called “theories of reception.” Rather than focusing on the international dissemination of ideas and knowledge, this approach emphasizes the reception of foreign ideas from the perspective and needs of the receiver, interpreter and/or reader who apprehends such ideas within a particular socio–cultural context.

Findings

This paper finds that Hu not only received — and examined — Dewey's educational ideas in a systematic way, but also used them pragmatically to reform China's systems of education as part of the New Culture Movement after 1919.

Originality/value

This research offers a new understanding of Hu's reception of Dewey's educational ideas. It shows that Hu was not merely a “thinker” in the field of education but also a “doer” who sought to apply Dewey's ideas in practice. This new view allows us to reevaluate Hu's role in the modernization of Chinese education.

Book part
Publication date: 20 January 2021

Tiina Soini, Kirsi Pyhältö and Janne Pietarinen

The national core curriculum is renewed in Finland approximately every ten years, the most recent one being 2016. The core curriculum sets the general goals, providing the…

Abstract

The national core curriculum is renewed in Finland approximately every ten years, the most recent one being 2016. The core curriculum sets the general goals, providing the foundation for district- and school level curriculum development work (Finnish National Board of Education, 2016). The messages from transnational educational policy (e.g. OECD) are apparent in the core curriculum. However, districts, schools and teachers are highly autonomous in upholding, resourcing and deciding about the curriculum making at the local sites of activity. Accordingly, the curriculum making relies heavily on shared sense-making as a tool for cultivating transformative learning throughout the educational system. The chapter draws on the results of the national “School Matters” research project (2014-2018), to provide the meta-analysis of the sense-making in national curriculum making. Results suggested that the shared sense-making focused on engaging educational practitioners in learning at all layers of the system. However, the means for facilitating shared sense-making between the different layers of the system and curriculum was perceived to be less coherent by the stakeholders at the district and school level, than at the state level. This implies that the educational providers should not only be involved in co-creation of the aims, contents and values of the curriculum document, but also in designing novel and ecologically valid ways for orchestrating the complex and dynamic curriculum making.

Details

Curriculum Making in Europe: Policy and Practice within and Across Diverse Contexts
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-735-0

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 2 August 2021

Fatimah Alhashem and Ibrahim Alhouti

Education reform has increasingly become a top political priority in most countries, as education is thought to be the solution to social and economic challenges. While…

Abstract

Education reform has increasingly become a top political priority in most countries, as education is thought to be the solution to social and economic challenges. While some of these reforms were successful, others had no impact at all and ended in failure. In the past two decades, Kuwait has continuously attempted to reform its education system, aiming to shift its economy toward a knowledge-based economy by improving the skill sets of its human capital. However, these attempts ended with failure. The aim of this chapter is to provide an explanation of the causes behind the failures by documenting and analyzing the recent reform project, which was launched in 2010 in collaboration with the World Bank. Due to the Ministry of Education’s (MOE’s) lack of official documentation related to the reform process the ethnography approach was used to develop critical documentation of reform process. The ability of educational institutions, including the MOE, to lead and manage educational reform is a crucial factor that affected the sustainability and success of the reform. Consequently, the success of any reform requires the government to prioritize top policies, implements certain social changes, and ensures skilled human capital is incorporated into the educational institutions.

Details

Annual Review of Comparative and International Education 2020
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80071-907-1

Keywords

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