Part 1: Worksite.
I am on a search committee for a new tenure track position. This is the first time I have served on such a committee. Last week, we met to try to review 71 applicants. We were not successful in deciding who would progress onto telephone interviews. We were caught up by how to interpret each requirement and desired qualification. For example, a doctorate in public health or related field meant many different things to each of us. Public health is one of those fields that encompasses a myriad of areas. It was quite frustrating since I received an email this morning about a new evaluation method on the same 71 candidates. In other words, no progress was made based on our observations last week. It felt like wasted time. This had me thinking about my problem of practice. There are many aspects that could be examined and need to be defined in order to move forward with my project. I am asking myself how I can refine and clarify my research questions to make the most sense.
Part 2: Observation.
On April 12, 2016, I observed a basketball practice for third to sixth graders at Haley Elementary School. One coach supervised seven young boys. The practice was held outside, leaving the coach to enforce water breaks about every ten minutes. The boys started practice right after the conclusion of the school day. While waiting for all the boys to arrive, they practiced taking shots at the basket in a somewhat coordinated chaos. Once everyone was in attendance, the coach had the boys run different drills, including dribbling, taking shots at the three point line, and footwork skills. He kept the practice moving by changing the activities about every five minutes. Occasionally, a boy would ask to sit down because he was too overheated or tired. The coached allowed this each time. For the drill where they practiced slides, the coach waited until after the drill to explain the reasoning behind it, which was learning how to block. Towards the end of the practice, the coach had the boys line up. He demonstrated how to go one-on-one with a peer, with the goal to block, while the other boy was trying to score. Each boy rotated in and were able to be both the blocker and shooter.
Part 3: Readings.
“lessons”?. Peabody Journal of Education, 65(2), 143-157.
Questions about whether innovated practices in schools can be implemented and sustained, why there are negative views about educational reform, what can be learned from previous efforts.
Reforms may be consistent with social and political forces, such as regulations, certifications, etc. May shift due to assumptions about what education is about.
Dewey argues that reforms fail because of conflict between purposes and standards that are inherent to the reform and external conditions. External conditions include specific school structures, classrooms.
Order versus teaching and the relationship between the two. Change threatens the loss of order, requires teachers to be risk takers.
Pendulum Swing Phenomenon - failures occur in reoccurring cycles, but in different settings, so difficult to trend and learn from them.
Those carrying out reforms are treated like consumers of the initiatives rather than partners, collaborators.
Part 4: Integrations.
Kliebard, H. M. (1988). Success and failure in educational reform: Are there historical“lessons”?. Peabody Journal of Education, 65(2), 143-157.