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Re: [xmca] Centralized vs. Distributed decision-making in schools

Wow! That article breathes fire! Great writing, Peter. Education Departments in my country as in others have been obliged to copy the US system! Presumably political leaders that only ever learnt when to put their hands up and how to tick boxes want a population trained in this way of life. But seriously, is decentralisation the way to go? Is idiotic education policies the result of "big government" or just bad government? Or is this just a polemical stance, like "show me a good reason for having an Education Department, then"?


Anthony Barra wrote:
This dispatch on US education reform and the powers that be landed on my
Facebook page last night:  "Why the Ed Department should be reconceived -
or abolished" - by Peter Smagorinsky


An educator on education policy, in the public sphere!  More of this please.

One excerpt:

"Instead of having a highly centralized administration powered by money
contributed by textbook publishers and other entrepreneurs cashing in on
the lucrative enterprise of educational materials production, I would have
a *highly distributed approach*** in which most decision-making is local
and includes — and indeed, relies on — the perspective of teachers.

Presently, there’s little reason for practicing teachers to<http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/post/five-ways-school-reform-is-hurting-teacher-quality/2012/03/08/gIQAHUMK3R_blog.html>keep up with the latest ideas emerging from credible sources, or to engage
in the process of producing those ideas and becoming credible sources
themselves. The approach that I suggest would lend urgency to the need for
teachers to be informed in order to make sound decisions. It would place a
premium on being a reflective practitioner who is attentive to classroom
processes and student learning, because such observations would become part
of the broader school conversation about how to best educate the students
who attend the school."

***emphasis added* because I (as a citizen, not just educator) would love
to hear more about this especially.

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*Andy Blunden*
Joint Editor MCA: http://www.tandfonline.com/toc/hmca20/18/1
Home Page: http://home.mira.net/~andy/
Book: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1608461459/

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