What Is School-BasedManagement?
What Is School-BasedManagement?November 2007EducationHuman Development NetworkTHE WORLD BANKWashington, DC
© 2008 The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development / The World Bank1818 H Street NWWashington DC 20433Teleph...
ContentsPreface   viiAcknowledgments        ixIntroduction      1School-Based Management Defined      2The Theory behind Sc...
PrefaceSchool-based management (SBM) has become a very popular movement over the pastdecade. Our SBM work program emerged ...
AcknowledgmentsThis report was prepared by a team consisting of Harry Anthony Patrinos (Task TeamLeader), Tazeen Fasih, Fe...
Introduction                                    SBM is that decentralizing decision-makingDespite the clear commitment of ...
2           WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?Table 1 School-Based Management in World Bank–Financed Education Projects     ...
Table 2     Various Functions for which Responsibility Is Devolved in Select Countries                                    ...
4   WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?                    The Theory behind School-Based                   the central gover...
WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?   5the power dynamics within each school. For           By making the school the centerpi...
6   WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?                      BOX 1.                  The Modest Entitivity of School-Based Ma...
Figure 1     Classification of School-Based Management Reforms Implemented in Various Countries    WEAK                    ...
8   WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?                    decisions, where schools are stand-alone units,       Balanced Con...
WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?                                    9parents. On the other hand, New Zealand          Figu...
10            WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?                                                      teachers, and principa...
WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?   11of SBM on school outcomes a nd the chal-        spread in terms of how it is implemen...
12   WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?                      6. Formal and informal responsibilities           United States...
WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?   13using these inputs efficiently. The literature    short route in which the service pro...
14           WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?Figure 3A     The Accountability Framework in the World Development Report 20...
WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?   15How School-Based Management                        instance, in the United States, ma...
16   WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?                     teachers and principals will come to resent      the issue that ...
WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?   17levels, or, by devolution of authority, to        school management? What about the l...
What  is school based management
What  is school based management
What  is school based management
What  is school based management
What  is school based management
What  is school based management
What  is school based management
What  is school based management
What  is school based management
What  is school based management
What  is school based management
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What is school based management


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What is school based management

  1. 1. What Is School-BasedManagement?
  2. 2. What Is School-BasedManagement?November 2007EducationHuman Development NetworkTHE WORLD BANKWashington, DC
  3. 3. © 2008 The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development / The World Bank1818 H Street NWWashington DC 20433Telephone: 202-473-1000Internet: www.worldbank.orgE-mail: feedback@worldbank.orgAll rights reserved1 2 3 4 5 10 09 08 07This volume is a product of the staff of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development / The World Bank. Thefindings, interpretations, and conclusions expressed in this volume do not necessarily reflect the views of the Executive Directorsof The World Bank or the governments they represent. The World Bank does not guarantee the accuracy of the data included in this work. The boundaries, colors, denominations,and other information shown on any map in this work do not imply any judgement on the part of The World Bank concerningthe legal status of any territory or the endorsement or acceptance of such boundaries.Rights and PermissionsThe material in this publication is copyrighted. Copying and/or transmitting portions or all of this work without permissionmay be a violation of applicable law. The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development / The World Bank encouragesdissemination of its work and will normally grant permission to reproduce portions of the work promptly. For permission to photocopy or reprint any part of this work, please send a request with complete information to theCopyright Clearance Center Inc., 222 Rosewood Drive, Danvers, MA 01923, USA; telephone: 978-750-8400; fax: 978-750-4470;Internet: www.copyright.com. All other queries on rights and licenses, including subsidiary rights, should be addressed to the Office of the Publisher, TheWorld Bank, 1818 H Street NW, Washington, DC 20433, USA; fax: 202-522-2422; e-mail: pubrights@worldbank.org. Cover photos, left to right: World Bank/Alfredo Srur, World Bank/Eric Miller, World Bank/Cart Carnemark
  4. 4. ContentsPreface viiAcknowledgments ixIntroduction 1School-Based Management Defined 2The Theory behind School-Based Management 4A Few Caveats 4A Typology of School-Based Management 5Toward a Conceptual Framework for Analyzing School-Based Management 12How School-Based Management Can Increase Participation andImprove School Outcomes 15Conclusions 16References 18Box1 The Modest Entitivity of School-Based Management 6Figures1 Classification of School-Based Management Reforms Implemented in Various Countries 72 The Autonomy-Participation Nexus 93A The Accountability Framework in the World Development Report 2004 143B The Accountability Framework in School-Based Management 14Tables1 School-Based Management in World Bank–Financed Education Projects (Fiscal years 2000–2006) 22 Various Functions for which Responsibility Is Devolved in Select Countries 33 Selective List of Countries with School-Based Management Reforms 10 v
  5. 5. PrefaceSchool-based management (SBM) has become a very popular movement over the pastdecade. Our SBM work program emerged out of a need to define the concept more clearly,review the evidence, support impact assessments in various countries, and provide someinitial feedback to teams preparing education projects. During first phase of the SBM workprogram, the team undertook a detailed stocktaking of the existing literature on SBM. Atthe same time we identified several examples of SBM reforms that we are now supportingthrough ongoing impact assessments. An online toolkit providing some general principlesthat can broadly be applied to the implementation of SBM reforms has been developed andcan be accessed on http://www.worldbank.org/education/economicsed.See companion piece: What Do We Know About School-Based Management? vii
  6. 6. AcknowledgmentsThis report was prepared by a team consisting of Harry Anthony Patrinos (Task TeamLeader), Tazeen Fasih, Felipe Barrera, Vicente A. Garcia-Moreno, Raja Bentaouet-Kattan,Shaista Baksh, and Inosha Wickramasekera. Significant contributions were received fromThomas Cook, Carmen Ana Deseda, Paul Gertler, Marta Rubio-Codina, Anna MariaSant’Anna, and Lucrecia Santibañez. Fiona Mackintosh provided excellent editing of thecontent and Victoriano Arias formatted the document. The team received very usefulfeedback from Ruth Kagia and Robin Horn. The peer reviewers for this task were Luis Benveniste and Shantayanan Devarajan. Excellent comments were received for an informal, virtual review from Erik Bloom.During the authors’ workshop, held on March 6–7, 2007, excellent seminars were deliveredby Lorenzo-Gomez Morin (formerly Under-Secretary of Basic Education, Mexico) andThomas Cook (Professor, Northwestern University). The team received excellent feedbackfrom all participants, including Amit Dar, Shantayanan Devarajan, Ariel Fiszbein, RobinHorn, Dingyong Hou, Emmanuel Jimenez, Ruth Kagia, Elizabeth King, Maureen Lewis,Mamta Murthi, Michelle Riboud, Halsey Rogers, Leopold Sarr, Raisa Venalainen, andChristel Vermeersch. Thoughtful comments were received at the concept paper stage from the peer reviewersas well as from Erik Bloom, Bong Gun Chung, Emanuela di Gropello, Ariel Fiszbein, AprilHarding, Elizabeth King, Heather Layton, Benoit Millot, Michael Mills, Kouassi Soman,Emiliana Vegas, and Raisa Venalainen. During an Education Sector Board meeting, the teamreceived useful comments from Martha Ainsworth, Regina Bendokat, Michelle Riboud,and Jee-Peng Tan. The report was discussed during a decision meeting chaired by NicholasKrafft (Director, Network Operations, Human Development Network) in June 2007.Written comments were received from Helen Abadzi, Regina Bendokat, Luis Benveniste,Barbara Bruns and Shantayanan Devarajan. ix
  7. 7. Introduction SBM is that decentralizing decision-makingDespite the clear commitment of govern- authority to parents and communities fostersments and international agencies to the demand and ensures that schools provideeducation sector, efficient and equitable the social and economic benefits that bestaccess to education is still proving to be reflect the priorities and values of those localelusive for many people around the world. communities (Lewis, 2006; and LeithwoodGirls, indigenous peoples, and other poor and Menzies, 1998). Education reforms inand marginalized groups often have only Organisation for Economic Co-operationlimited access to education. These access and Development (OECD) countries tend toissues are being addressed with great com- share some common characteristics of thismitment in international initiatives, such kind, including increased school autonomy,as Education for All, in which resources are greater responsiveness to local needs, andbeing channeled to low-income countries the overall objective of improving students’to help them to achieve the Millennium academic performance (OECD, 2004). MostDevelopment Goals (MDGs) for educa- countries whose students perform well intion. However, even where children do have international student achievement tests giveaccess to educational facilities, the quality local authorities and schools substantialof education that is provided is often very autonomy to decide the content of their cur-poor. This has become increasingly appar- riculum and the allocation and managementent in international learning tests such as of their resources.Trends in International Mathematics and An increasing number of developingScience Study (TIMSS), Progress in Inter- countries are introducing SBM reformsnational Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS), aimed at empowering principals and teach-and Programme for International Student ers or at strengthening their professionalAssessment (PISA), in which most of the motivation, thereby enhancing their sensestudents from developing countries fail to of ownership of the school. Many of theseexcel. There is evidence that merely increas- reforms have also strengthened parentaling resource allocations will not increase involvement in the schools, sometimes bythe equity or improve the quality of educa- means of school councils. Almost 11 percenttion in the absence of institutional reforms of all projects in the World Bank’s education(Hanushek and Woessmann, 2007). portfolio for fiscal years 2000–06 supported Governments around the world are intro- school-based management, a total of 17ducing a range of strategies aimed at improv- among about 157 projects (see Table 1). Thising the financing and delivery of education represents $1.74 billion or 23 percent of theservices, with a more recent emphasis on Bank’s total education financing.improving quality as well as increasing The majority of SBM projects in the Bank’squantity (enrollments) in education. One current portfolio are in Latin American andsuch strategy is to decentralize education South Asian countries, including Argentina,decision-making by increasing parental and Bangladesh, Guatemala, Honduras, India,community involvement in schools—which Mexico, and Sri Lanka. In addition, a numberis popularly known as school-based man- of current and upcoming projects in theagement (SBM). The argument in favor of Africa region have a component focused on 1
  8. 8. 2 WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?Table 1 School-Based Management in World Bank–Financed Education Projects of increasing the access of the poor to better(Fiscal years 2000–2006) quality education, it is by no means sufficient. The SBM approach aims to improve service Total SBM % delivery to the poor by increasing their choiceEducation projects (number) 157 17 10.8 and participation in service delivery, by giving citizens a voice in school managementEducation lending ($billion) 7.6 1.7 22.9 by making information widely available, and by strengthening the incentives for schools to deliver effective services to the poor and by strengthening school-level committees and penalizing those who fail to deliver. SBM. There are also two Bank-supported SBM projects in Europe and Central Asia (in the former Yugoslav Republic of Mace- School-Based Management donia and in Serbia and Montenegro) and Defined one each in East Asia and the Pacific (the SBM is the decentralization of authority Philippines), and in the Middle East and from the central government to the school North Africa (Lebanon). level (Caldwell, 2005). In the words of Malen The few well-documented cases of SBM et al. (1990), “School-based management implementation that have been subject to can be viewed conceptually as a formal alter- rigorous impact evaluations have already ation of governance structures, as a form of been reviewed elsewhere (World Bank, decentralization that identifies the individ- 2007a). In this paper, we focus on the con- ual school as the primary unit of improve- cept of SBM and its different forms and ment and relies on the redistribution of dimensions and present a conceptual frame- decision-making authority as the primary work for understanding it. We define SBM means through which improvement might broadly to include community-based man- be stimulated and sustained.” agement and parental participation schemes Thus, in SBM, responsibility for, and but do not explicitly include stand-alone, or decision-making authority over, school one-off, school grants programs that are not operations is transferred to principals, meant to be permanent alterations in school teachers, and parents, and sometimes to management. students and other school community mem- SBM programs lie along a continuum bers. However, these school-level actors have in terms of the degree to which decision- to conform to or operate within a set of making is devolved to the local level. Some policies determined by the central govern- devolve only a single area of autonomy, ment. SBM programs exist in many different whereas others go further and devolve the forms, both in terms of who has the power power to hire and fire teachers and author- to make decisions and in terms of the degree ity over substantial resources, while at the of decision-making that is devolved to the far end of the spectrum there are those school level. While some programs transfer that encourage the private and community authority only to principals or teachers, management of schools as well as allow par- others encourage or mandate parental and ents to create schools. Thus, there are both community participation, often as members strong and weak versions of SBM based on of school committees (or school councils how much decision-making power has been or school management committees). In transferred to the school. general, SBM programs transfer authority The World Bank’s World Develop- over one or more of the following activities: ment Report 2004 (WDR 2004) presented budget allocation, the hiring and firing of a conceptual framework for SBM (World teachers and other school staff, curriculum Bank, 2003a). The WDR argues that school development, the procurement of textbooks autonomy and accountability can help to and other educational material, infrastruc- solve some fundamental problems in edu- ture improvements, and the monitoring cation. While increasing resource flows and and evaluation of teacher performance and support to the education sector is one aspect student learning outcomes (see Table 2).
  9. 9. Table 2 Various Functions for which Responsibility Is Devolved in Select Countries Florida EDUCO, PRONADE, PROHECO, ASP, PEC, AGES, (Monroe New York DSSP, COGES, FPESP,Council Functions El Salvador Guatemala Honduras Nicaragua Mexico Mexico Brazil Chicago County) (Rochester) Australia New Zealand Mozambique Niger KenyaPersonnel ManagementPaying staff salaries * * * * * *Establishing incentives * * * for teaching staffHiring/firing teaching * * * * * * * * * * staff (some)Hiring/firing * * * * administrative staff (some)Supervising and * * * * * * evaluating teachersFunding teacher * * trainingPedagogySetting classroom * * hours by subjectSelecting some * * * * * * textbooks/curriculumMethod of instruction * * *School calendar * *Maintenance and InfrastructureBuilding/maintaining * * * * * * * * schoolBuying school material * * * * * * * * * *BudgetBudget oversight * * * * * * * * *Budget allocation * * * * * * *Establishing school fee * *Monitoring and EvaluationAdministrative * * * * activitiesPedagogical decisions * * * WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?Note: Adapted from di Gropello (2006).Source: Authors’ compilation from relevant literature. 3
  10. 10. 4 WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT? The Theory behind School-Based the central government always plays some Management role in education, and the precise definition of this role affects how SBM activities are Good education is not only about physical conceived and implemented. inputs, such as classrooms, teachers, and SBM in almost all of its manifestations textbooks, but also about incentives that lead involves community members in school to better instruction and learning. Educa- decision-making. Because these community tion systems are extremely demanding of the members are usually parents of children managerial, technical, and financial capac- enrolled in the school, they have an incen- ity of governments, and, thus, as a service, tive to improve their children’s education. education is too complex to be efficiently As a result, SBM can be expected to improve produced and distributed in a centralized student achievement and other outcomes fashion (King and Cordeiro-Guerra, 2005; as these local people demand closer moni- and Montreal Economic Institute, 2007). toring of school personnel, better student Hanushek and Woessmann (2007) suggest evaluations, a closer match between the that most of the incentives that affect learn- school’s needs and its policies, and a more ing outcomes are institutional in nature, and efficient use of resources. For instance, they identify three in particular: (i) choice although the evidence is mixed, in a num- and competition; (ii) school autonomy; and ber of diverse countries, such as Papua New (iii) school accountability. The idea behind Guinea, India, and Nicaragua, parental choice and competition is that parents who participation in school management has are interested in maximizing their children’s reduced teacher absenteeism (for a detailed learning outcomes are able to choose to discussion see Patrinos and Kagia, 2007; and send their children to the most productive Karim et al., 2004). (in terms of academic results) school that SBM has several other benefits. Under they can find. This demand-side pressure on these arrangements, schools are managed schools will thus improve the performance more transparently, thus reducing opportu- of all schools if they want to compete for nities for corruption. Also, SBM often gives students. Similarly, local decision-making parents and stakeholders opportunities to and fiscal decentralization can have posi- increase their skills. In some cases, training tive effects on school outcomes such as test in shared decision-making, interpersonal scores or graduation rates by holding the skills, and management skills is offered to schools accountable for the “outputs” that school council members so that they can they produce. The World Development become more capable participants in the Report 2004, Making Services Work for Poor SBM process (Briggs and Wohlstetter, 1999) People, presents a very similar framework, in and at the same time benefit the commu- that it suggests that good quality and timely nity as a whole. service provision can be ensured if service providers can be held accountable to their clients (World Bank, 2003a). In the case of A Few Caveats the education sector, this would mean stu- Notwithstanding the basic theory of SBM, dents and their parents. no theorist disputes the interdependence of In the context of developed countries, governments, school administration, teacher the core idea behind SBM is that those classroom behavior, and, in most cases, who work in a school building should have parental attitudes. So by definition, putting greater control of the management of what SBM into practice involves ensuring that goes on in the building. In developing coun- all of these actors work together in a system tries, the idea behind SBM is less ambitious, of mutual dependence. However, devolv- in that it focuses mainly on involving com- ing power to the school level means that munity and parents in the school decision- some groups outside of the school, such as making process rather than putting them district or local education offices, are likely entirely in control. However, in both cases, to lose some of their power, thus changing
  11. 11. WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT? 5the power dynamics within each school. For By making the school the centerpiece ofinstance, this might mean that teachers have educational policy change, SBM does notto surrender some control over how they assume that the roles played by either therun their classrooms or that local education government or by individual teachers will beoffices lose control over funds and, hence, negligible. Public schools will always exist inthe power that comes with that. Thus, des- some larger policy and administrative con-cribing SBM in terms of the transfer of text that affects their operations. The key ispowers will inevitably make it difficult to to identify exactly what the government’simplement because, while some stakeholders role in decision-making should be.will gain, others will lose. This can be exac-erbated by the fact that the powers that are A Typology of School-Basedmost commonly devolved to the school level Managementare those that matter most to schools, such SBM has been introduced in countries asas its administration (budgets and person-nel), its pedagogy (curriculum and teaching diverse as New Zealand, the United States,practices), and its external relations (with the United Kingdom, El Salvador, Nicaragua,governments and the local community). As Guatemala, the Netherlands, Hong Kongmore decision-making reverts to school staff, (SAR), Thailand, and Israel. However, theseparents, and local community members, it is SBM reforms have been far from uniformcentral and local government officials who and have encompassed a wide variety of dif-are most likely to lose the authority that ferent approaches. As the definition of SBMcomes with making budgetary decisions and reflects, it is a form of decentralization thatwith hiring and firing personnel, and many makes the school the centerpiece of educa-are likely to resent the loss. For instance, in tional improvement and relies on the redis-Chicago, decision-making authority over tribution of responsibilities as the primaryschool management was transferred to local way to bring about these improvements.school councils consisting of the principals, This definition leaves plenty of room forteacher representatives, parents, and local interpretation, and the reality is that therecommunity members (Cook et al., 2000; are now many different kinds of SBM being implemented. SBM reforms are shaped byand Abu-Duhou, 1999). In some cases, local the reformers’ objectives and by broadercommunity members took over one or more national policy and social contexts.school councils and then proceeded to use SBM approaches differ in two mainthem for their own political ends (such as ways: the “who,” that is, to whom theincreasing community control over city “decision-making authority” is devolved,resources and their say in non-educational and the “what,” that is, the degree of auton-matters) rather than for the education of chil- omy that is devolved. This is what we call thedren. As a result, the mayor ended the SBM autonomy-participation nexus. The variousexperiment by reclaiming authority and combinations of these two dimensions makebudgets and thus essentially making the local almost every SBM reform unique. The South-school councils redundant (Cook, 2007). west Educational Development Laboratory Also, SBM often requires teachers to play (http://www.sedl.org) in the United States hasgreater roles in the governance and manage- an inventory of more than 800 SBM modelsment of the schools where they teach. While (Rowan et al., 2004), and about 29 of themthis enlarges the scope of their job, it also have been evaluated at least once (Bormanrequires more time and energy from them et al., 2003). Cook (2007) explains SBM as aand can sometimes limit their traditional construct of modest entitivity, in other words,freedom to do whatever they want inside the a model that cannot have a unique form inclassroom. Not all teachers appreciate having all of the places in which it is implementedto take on additional managerial roles and (see Box 1), which means that SBM reformsresponsibilities, even when these changes around the world are inevitably different fromare marginal (Cook, 2007; Wylie, 1996; and each other. In the discussion that follows,Whitty et al., 1998).
  12. 12. 6 WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT? BOX 1. The Modest Entitivity of School-Based Management In 1999, the United States Congress passed a Comprehensive School Reform Act, which outlined the 11 components of an autonomous local school. However, nobody argues that all of these 11 components must be in place for a school to be considered as having adopted either comprehensive school reform (CSR) or school-based management (SBM). Nor has anyone specified a minimum or core number of attributes needed for a school to qualify for either label. However, it is obvious that as more of these components are included in an SBM plan, the more radical will be the organizational change being adopted. The reality in the U.S. is that, to varying degrees, schools can and do pick and choose among these components. Depending on the school, one component can either be central or peripheral to their school’s strategic plan, and it may be put into practice as its inventor intended, or be adapted in ways that the inventor may not recognize or like. Given all of the possible combinations of these com- ponents, it is clear that there are thousands of different ways to put together an SBM plan, and how this is done can have important consequences for the school and for the reform as a whole. A school may choose to make fundamental changes to all of its administrative, pedagogical, and external relations functions or to change just a few of them. The key decision-making authority may stay with the principal, or be shared with teachers, or shared with teachers, parents, and other community representatives. The new decision-makers might choose as their major goal to modify the curriculum, or to improve students’ social behavior, or improve students’ academic performance, or reduce teacher turnover, or all the above. Performance monitoring may be central, peripheral, or nonexistent; and if it exists, it may require quantitative data or just informal feedback. Parents may be asked to perform many school roles or be involved only tangentially, and many parents may be involved or just a few. The point is not just that each of the 11 components can each be made operational in multiple ways but also that each component can be combined in literally thousands of ways across all of the variants of all of the other components. The net result is that, whatever the achieved theoretical con- sensus about SBM, it still has modest entitivity at the school level. It is not devoid of all entitivity since the core concept can always be indexed as the degree to which change occurs in the locus of decision- making favoring the whole-school level. However, the context in which SBM is put into practice is so variable that one school’s SBM is unlikely to look like another’s. Source: Cook 2007. we explore the main forms taken by SBM, but which schools have only limited autonomy, this is by no means an exhaustive typology. usually over areas related to instructional methods or planning for school improve- ment, as in the quality schools program in The Autonomy Continuum Mexico (the Programa Escuelas de Calidad The SBM programs lie along a continuum or PEC) (Skoufias and Shapiro, 2006; and of the degree to which decision-making is Karim et al., 2004). When school councils devolved to the local level—from limited start serving an advisory role, such as in autonomy, to more ambitious programs Prince William County in Virginia (Drury that allow schools to hire and fire teachers, and Levin, 1994) or in Edmonton, Canada to programs that give schools control over (Wohlstetter and Mohrman, 1996; and substantial resources, to those that promote Abu-Duhou, 1999), this can be classified private and community management of as a “moderate” reform. As these councils schools and those that may eventually allow become more autonomous—receiving parents to create their own schools. Figure 1 funds directly from the central or other depicts this continuum and presents some of relevant level of government (for example, the countries that have implemented SBM lump-sum funding or grants) and hiring reforms across this continuum of “weak” to and firing teachers and principals and set- “strong” reforms. It should be noted, how- ting curricula—this is a much stronger type ever, that we do not use the terms “weak” of SBM reform. Schools like these can be and “strong” to classify any SBM system found in El Salvador (di Gropello, 2006) as better as, or worse than, any other but and New Zealand (Wylie, 1996). At the end simply to define the degree of autonomy of the continuum are local public educa- awarded to the school level. For instance, tion systems in which parents have com- we define “weak” SBM reforms as those in plete choice and control over all educational
  13. 13. Figure 1 Classification of School-Based Management Reforms Implemented in Various Countries WEAK MODERATE SOMEWHAT STRONG STRONG VERY STRONG/1 system is limited autonomy school councils councils have …and control parental or …and choice decentralized to states over school affairs have been autonomy to substantial community models, in which or localities, but mainly for planning established but hire/fire teachers resources (e.g., control of parents or others individual schools and instruction serve only and principals, and lump-sum schools… can create a school have no autonomy advisory role set curricula… funding) Virginia (US) Argentina Mexico Canada Chicago New UK Netherlands Chile Czech Rep. Brazil Florida New York Zealand proposal Thailand Spain El Salvador Honduras Nicaragua Guatemala Australia Israel/2 Hong Kong Cambodia/3/1 These represent ratings in the continuum of autonomy and authority vested in schools by the various types of SBM reforms./2 Israeli schools have autonomy over their budgets. Locally controlled school budgets represent a small fraction of total public expenditures, because most expenditures arecontrolled and made by the central government. There are no school councils or parent associations with any decision-making authority./3 Cambodian schools in the EQIP program receive cash grants and include parents and school staff in decision-making, but school councils have not been formally established.Source: Authors’ compilation from relevant literature. WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT? 7
  14. 14. 8 WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT? decisions, where schools are stand-alone units, Balanced Control SBM balances decision- and where all decisions concerning schools’ making authority between parents and teach- operational, financial, and educational man- ers, who are the two main stakeholders in agement are made by the school councils any school. Its aims are to take advantage of or school administrators. In these cases, teachers’ detailed knowledge of the school to parents or any other community members improve school management and to make can even establish fully autonomous pub- schools more accountable to parents. licly funded private schools, as in Denmark The administrative control model can and the Netherlands, and, in a few cases, never exist in its pure form since principals fully autonomous public (charter) schools, can never operate on their own in practice. as in some U.S. states (Abu-Duhou, 1999) Principals need other people to work for and in the United Kingdom. It is interesting them and to help them to make decisions to note that, to some extent, parents have a for the school. Existing models of SBM similar degree of autonomy and choice in around the world are generally a blend of both private schools and in publicly funded, the four models described above. In most fully autonomous schools. cases, power is devolved to a formal legal entity in the form of a school council or school management committee, which The Autonomy-Participation Nexus consists of teachers as well as the principal. The other dimension is who gets the In nearly all versions of SBM, community decision-making power when it is devolved representatives also serve on the committee to the school level. In a simple world, the or group. As a result, school personnel can following four models would be sufficient to get to know the local people to whom they define who is invested with decision-making are ultimately accountable, and are thus power in any SBM reform (Leithwood and more likely to take local needs and wishes Menzies, 1998): administrative control; pro- into account when making decisions in the fessional control; community control; and knowledge that local residents can monitor balanced control. what the school professionals are doing to Administrative Control SBM devolves bring about change. Although community authority to the school principal. This involvement can improve program plan- model aims to make each school more ning and implementation in these ways, accountable to the central district or board occasionally school personnel involve com- office. The benefits of this kind of SBM munity members only superficially in a way include increasing the efficiency of expen- that does not complicate the lives of prin- ditures on personnel and curriculum and cipals and teachers (World Bank, 2007b; making one person at each school more and Cook, 2007). Parents and community accountable to the central authority. members have roles to play in SBM, but Professional Control SBM devolves the these roles are not universally clear and main decision-making authority to teach- not always central. However, in some cases, ers. This model aims to make better use the legal entity that has the main author- of teachers’ knowledge of what the school ity to implement SBM is a parents’ council, needs at the classroom level. Full partici- though they cannot operate successfully pation in the decision-making process can without the support of teachers and the also motivate teachers to perform better principal. and can lead to greater efficiency and effec- The autonomy-participation nexus defines tiveness in teaching. the essence of an SBM reform. Figure 2 uses a Community Control SBM devolves the few of the more popular SBM reforms around main decision-making authority to parents the world to illustrate this nexus. or the community. Under this model, teach- The AGES program in Mexico gives mini- ers and principals are assumed to become mal autonomy to school councils, which more responsive to parents’ needs. Another are run mainly by parents (Gertler et al., benefit is that the curriculum can reflect 2006). Thus, in Figure 2, it lies close to the local needs and preferences. X axis, that is, with little autonomy given to
  15. 15. WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT? 9parents. On the other hand, New Zealand Figure 2 The Autonomy-Participation Nexuscan be seen as being highly autonomous,with most of the decision-making powerlying with parents (Wylie, 1996). Another Netherlands New Zealandextreme is the Netherlands, which in 1985 Chicago,devolved decision-making power to school USAprincipals to make schools more efficient.At the same time, parents in the Netherlands Guatemalacan mandate the creation of a new school tomeet their own specific cultural and religious El Salvadorneeds. The city of Chicago in the United AutonomyStates is a good example of a school systemin which combinations of community mem-bers, teachers, and principals have been givena high level of autonomy (Cook et al., 2000). MozambiqueThe Autonomy-Participation-Accountability Nexus Mexico PECThere is another link to the autonomy- Mexicoparticipation chain—accountability. In AGESa number of countries, one of the mainobjectives of introducing SBM is to makeschools more accountable and their man- principal teacher community/ combinationagement more transparent. Anderson (2005) parentshas suggested that there are three types Participationof accountability in SBM. Those who Source: Authors’ compilation from relevant literature.run schools must be: (i) accountable foradhering to rules and accountable to theeducation authorities; (ii) accountable for the school councils are accountable both toadhering to standards and accountable to their central education authorities (verticaltheir peers; and (iii) accountable for stu- accountability) and to the school commu-dent learning and accountable to the gen- nity and donors (horizontal accountability).eral public. SBM programs both strengthen If expanded, this program has the potentialand simplify these types of accountability to reduce petty corruption, as documentedby empowering those at the school level to in Transparency International (2005) andmake decisions collectively, thus increas- Patrinos and Kagia (2007). As can be seen ining the transparency of the process. Con- Table 3, a number of countries introducedsequently, students’ learning achievement SBM with the explicit goal of increasingand other outcomes are expected to improve accountability and increasing communityas stakeholders at the school level can moni- and parental participation in the decision-tor school personnel, improve student making process. The accountability aspectevaluations, ensure a closer match between of SBM reforms has also been highlightedschool needs and policies, and use resources in the WDR 2004 (World Bank, 2003a) asmore efficiently. a way to strengthen accountability rela- By increasing transparency, SBM can tionships between the clients (parents andalso reduce corruption. For instance, the students) and the service providers (teach-limited autonomy form of SBM in the PEC ers, principals, and the government).program in Mexico is credited with increas- Thus, by its very nature, SBM has theing accountability and transparency as well potential to hold school-level decision-as with preventing and limiting corrupt makers accountable for their actions. How-practices in the management of educational ever, in many places, it may be necessary tofunds (Karim et al., 2004). This is so because build the capacity of community members,
  16. 16. 10 WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT? teachers, and principals to create or augment list in Table 3 is not an exhaustive one since a culture of accountability. a large number of countries are experiment- ing with SBM at a project level, often with the World Bank’s support. In addition to School-Based Management Reforms those mentioned in the table, there are SBM around the World projects in Lesotho, Pakistan, Kenya, Para- As can be seen in Table 3, a wide range of guay, Serbia and Montenegro, and the for- countries have experimented with or intro- mer Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. The duced SBM reforms. The impetus behind companion publication What Do We Know most of these reforms has been political, About School-Based Management (World financial, or a reaction to a natural disas- Bank 2007a) focuses on a subset of countries ter or civil conflict rather than educational. in Table 3 that have conducted some type of However, in all cases, the aim has also been impact evaluation and discussed the find- to address difficult management issues. The ings of these evaluations about the impactTable 3 Selective List of Countries with School-Based Management ReformsCountry Date First Implemented Objectives/Motivation of Reform Type of SBM*Australia 1970s Increase efficiency through almost complete autonomy. StrongCanada 1970s (Edmonton) Increase parental and community participation in education and grant Moderate 1996 (Ontario) schools more autonomy.United States (Chicago, 1970s and 1980s Most reforms sought to increase efficiency, empower teachers, and Moderate to Florida, Virginia, New York, involve the community in schools. Some reforms (such as Chicago) made somewhat strong and others) improving student achievement an explicit objective.Brazil 1982 Increase efficiency in school management, more democratic and Moderate meritocratic process for electing school personnel, increase community and parent participation.Spain 1985 Democratize education. Somewhat strongUnited Kingdom 1988 Give schools financial autonomy, increase school effectiveness. StrongNew Zealand 1990 Increase community autonomy and efficiency. StrongEl Salvador 1991 Increase access in rural areas, encourage community participation, and Strong improve quality of schooling.Nicaragua 1991 Increase community participation, obtain financial resources beyond Strong government funding, and increase efficiency.Hong Kong 1991 Increase accountability, participatory decision-making, and school Strong effectiveness.Netherlands 1992 Empower school principals in order to increase efficiency. Very strongCzech Republic 1993 Make system more open, flexible, and democratic. ModerateGuatemala 1996 Increase access, decentralize educational decision-making, increase Strong community participation, and maintain linguistic diversity.Mexico (AGES) 1996 Increase parental participation in rural schools. ModerateThailand 1997 Improve quality of education and increase the country’s competitiveness. Somewhat strongMozambique 1997 Increase access to higher quality education through decentralized Moderate management and budget allocations.Israel 1997 Improve public school system, school management, monitoring, and Somewhat strong assessment.Cambodia 1998 Improve education. Somewhat strongHonduras 1999 Increase access in rural areas and encourage community participation. StrongMexico (PEC) 2001 Improve educational quality by granting more autonomy to schools. Moderate* The classification of types of SBM is as follows: Very Strong – Full or almost full control of schools by councils, parents, or school administrators; full choice via possibility of creatingnew public schools (i.e., charters). Strong – High degree of autonomy given to school councils over budget, staffing, etc. and control over budgets (i.e., schools receive lump sum fundingor grants). Somewhat strong – Councils have authority to hire and fire teachers and/or principals and set curricula but have more limited autonomy regarding finances and control ofresources. Moderate – School councils have been established but serve mainly an advisory role or have limited autonomy for planning and strategic purposes. Weak – Public school systemis decentralized to the municipal or regional level, but schools have virtually no autonomy to make any administrative or curricular decisions.Source: Authors’ compilation from relevant literature.
  17. 17. WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT? 11of SBM on school outcomes a nd the chal- spread in terms of how it is implemented inlenges that analysts face given the limited practice, and both SBM and CSR focus onevidence base. devolving strategic planning to the school A particular pattern can be seen in the level, involving multiple groups in settinglevel of development in those countries the school’s goals, changing teachers’ peda-where SBM reforms have been introduced. gogic practices, and building stronger rela-SBM reforms of the strongest type have tions between the school and parents andbeen introduced and, to some extent, been the surrounding community. So CSR andsuccessful (or rather sustainable) in achiev- SBM are close to being synonymous, espe-ing their goals in developed countries, such cially in practice.as New Zealand, Australia, and Spain, or In the United States, the popularity ofin countries emerging from conflict situa- the concept of CSR eventually led to Congresstions, such as El Salvador and Nicaragua, or passing a Comprehensive School Reforma natural disaster, such as Honduras. Mean- Act in 1999. The Act outlined the 11 com-while, developing countries, such as Mexico, ponents of a locally autonomous schoolBrazil, and Pakistan are experimenting with (Borman et al., 2003; and Cook, 2007):the weaker forms of SBM. Does this pat-tern mean that certain community or social 1. Each school must adopt a model of SBMstructures need to be in place to support that is known to be successful or has thestrong SBM? Only rigorous impact evalu- promise of being so. This implies that aations of SBM reforms in a wide range of number of empirically tested models ofcountries will be able to confirm or reject SBM already exist and that the majorthis claim, but these do not yet exist. task for a school is to select one from this list, but this is not the case in mostThe United States Model(s) of countries other than the U.S.School-Based Management 2. Proven methods of teaching, learning,Cook (2007) suggests that, in the United and management should be used in theStates, the idea of SBM has been discussed schools, whether as part of the adoptedsince the 1960s (for a review, see Comer, CSR model or grafted onto it. It is not1988). However, the idea really took off clear what “proven” means here, butin the U.S. in the 1990s, prompted by the the reference is nonetheless impor-Comprehensive School Reform (CSR) tant because the law implies that man-movement and the legislation to which it agement change is not sufficient forled. CSR makes three ideas central to the comprehensive school reform but thatreform: (i) school change should be radi- changes in teaching and learning arecal rather than marginal, thus meriting also needed.the label “reform” rather than “change”; 3. The methods for teaching, learning, and(ii) to merit the label “comprehensive,” the management should be integrated into areform should encompass the adminis- coherent package.trative, pedagogic, and external relationsaspects of school life; and (iii) the reforms 4. There should be continual professionalshould be at the school level rather than development for staff. This componentat the district level or the classroom level. acknowledges that changing the ethos ofCSR has become more common than SBM a school is difficult. Principals and teach-in educational theory in the U.S., though ers need to be trained to do new thingsthe two are closely related. The main dif- or to do old things in different ways.ference is that SBM can be construed nar- 5. Staff should support the SBM initiative.rowly to concern only specific aspects of One rationale for SBM is that if staffgovernance or administration. This is less (or their representatives) have a say inpossible with CSR, which strongly implies deciding on school changes, this willbroad and fundamental change. However, make them more supportive of thosethe narrower definition of SBM is not wide- changes.
  18. 18. 12 WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT? 6. Formal and informal responsibilities United States is that not all reforms can be should be distributed widely within each fully funded from the public purse. school. School principals have very dif- Nobody argues that all of these 11 com- ficult and stressful jobs and are called ponents must be in place for a school to be upon to make decisions throughout considered as having adopted CSR or SBM. their working days. One purpose of Nor has anyone specified a minimum or core SBM is to share decision-making within number of attributes needed to qualify for the school as well as to shift decision- either label. Nevertheless, it is obvious that making to the school. as more of these components are included in 7. Parents and the local community should an SBM plan, the more radical the organiza- be involved in the school. The assump- tional change it will make. However, looking tions here are that this will make teach- at the impressive list of components in the ers put the children’s welfare before U.S. model, it is likely to be difficult to rep- their own; that human, financial, and licate in developing countries. For instance, material resources will flow into the no developing country has a database of 29 school by virtue of the parental support; kinds of SBM, all of which have been evalu- and that more children will learn, both ated within their own political and cultural at home and in the community, that circumstances (Borman et al., 2003). Also, attending and doing well in school are low-income countries may not be able to highly valued. afford to train staff to use SBM effectively. 8. There will be external technical support for For instance, in a recent program in the whatever changes the school is making. Punjab province of Pakistan, the School Committees component of the program 9. Measurable benchmarks should be used. did not materialize as quickly or widely as Central to most kinds of managerial anticipated. One of the major reasons for reform is developing interim goals and this delay was the lack of civil society or non- determining ways to measure them so governmental organizations with the ability that, if necessary, mid-course correc- to help the school councils to build their tions can be made. capacity (World Bank, 2007b). These could 10. Annual evaluations are needed of how be a few of the reasons why developing SBM is being implemented and of any countries prefer to introduce weaker forms changes in student performance. These of SBM rather than stronger ones. evaluations will measure how much progress is being made toward organi- zational goals (as SBM is about organi- Toward a Conceptual Framework zational change). for Analyzing School-Based 11. Mechanisms are needed for finding addi- Management tional human and financial resources A conceptual framework for SBM can be from external sources. presented in the terms of the messages in the WDR 2004 (World Bank, 2003a). The While most school income is expected to WDR 2004 presented evidence that increas- come from government and fees, changes to ing school autonomy and accountability a school’s management goals and structures can help to solve some of the most funda- will often require additional human and mental problems in education. According financial resources that governments and par- to this evidence, while increasing resource ents may not be willing or able to provide. In flows and other support to the educa- the United States, these extra school resources tion sector is necessary to give the poor are raised by: (i) parents who volunteer time greater access to quality education, it is by or donate money to the school; (ii) soliciting no means sufficient. It is also necessary to local businesses for cash and in-kind services; translate these resources into basic services (iii) trying to raise funds from other civic that can reach the poor. Schools should be organizations; and (iv) lobbying the govern- given some autonomy in using their inputs ment. The assumption behind SBM in the and be held accountable to the users for
  19. 19. WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT? 13using these inputs efficiently. The literature short route in which the service providersthat promotes the use of SBM recommends are held directly accountable to the citizensfour tenets for improving service delivery or clients. The clients can improve serviceto the poor: (i) increasing their choice and delivery by: (i) using their voice to ensureparticipation, (ii) giving citizens a stronger that services are tailored to meet their needsvoice, (iii) making information widely avail- and (ii) by monitoring the providers. Inable, and (iv) strengthening the rewards cases where short route improvements arefor delivering effective services to the poor already being tested and/or where societyand penalizing those who fail to deliver is amenable to long route improvements,(Barnett, 1996). these should be adopted. The WDR 2004 framework for analyzing Theoretically, SBM models encompassthe provision of education services defines all of the four relationships of accountabil-four aspects of accountability: ity as envisaged in the WDR 2004. Compact refers to the long route of accountability,1. Voice – how well citizens can hold politi- whereby the central government delegates cians and policymakers accountable for responsibility to the line ministries, who in their performance in discharging their turn delegate it to schools to perform vari- responsibility for providing education. ous tasks. In this sense, in certain models of2. Compact – how well and how clearly the SBM, the accountability of school princi- responsibilities and objectives of public pals is upwards, to the ministry who holds education policy are communicated. them responsible for providing the services3. Management – the actions that create to the clients who in turn have put the poli- effective frontline providers within orga- cymakers in power and thus have the voice nizations. to hold the policymakers and politicians accountable for their performance. In most4. Client power – how well citizens, as cli- cases of SBM, the management mechanisms ents, can increase the accountability of change under SBM reforms—the clients schools and school systems. themselves become part of the management along with the frontline providers. Thus the In the words of the WDR 2004 (World short route of accountability becomes evenBank, 2003a), effective solutions are likely shorter as representatives of the clients—to involve a mixture of voice, choice, direct either parents or community members—participation, and organizational com- get the authority to make certain decisionsmand and control. The report goes on to for them and have a voice in decisions thatsuggest that what successful education directly affect the students who attend thesystems share is a meaningful accountabil- school. The framework is presented in Fig-ity system. The WDR 2004 framework is ure 3B, where the school managers, whetherpresented as a three-cornered relationship they are the principal alone or a committeebetween citizens, politicians, and service of parents and teachers, act as the account-providers (depicted in Figure 3A). The ser- able entity.vice provision and accountability relation- Thus, SBM can be a way of ensuringships between these actors is complex, as accountability and autonomy as envisagedeven within each group of actors there are in the WDR 2004 but with an added groupusually heterogeneous sub-groups, and the of agents, the school managers (in otherincentives and accountability relationships words, the group to whom the autonomy isthat work for one group may be differ- devolved). This group usually consists of aent from those that work for other groups. partnership of the various agents who canWhen accountability fails, the failure can hold each other accountable to be able tobe tracked either to the long route or to the provide the services according to the needsshort route. Sometimes improving the long of the particular school. The success of thisroute is a long-term process and, in some additional group of agents as the repositorysituations, may not be doable. In these cases, of devolved authority for running schoolsthe WDR 2004 suggests strengthening the has yet to be established.
  20. 20. 14 WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT?Figure 3A The Accountability Framework in the World Development Report 2004 long route of accountability the state politicians policymakers compact voice citizens/clients short route providers non-poor poor client frontline organization power servicesSource: World Bank, 2003a.Figure 3B The Accountability Framework in School-Based Management long route of accountability the state politicians policymakers compact voice citizens/clients providers non-poor poor frontline organization management management client power client power short route services school committee clients providersSource: Authors.
  21. 21. WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT? 15How School-Based Management instance, in the United States, many schoolsCan Increase Participation and are locally controlled in the sense that a school board of local residents officially setsImprove School Outcomes policy, but there may be no parental par-Unlike in developed countries where SBM ticipation in these schools. In some cases,is introduced explicitly to improve students’ wealthy individuals in a community may beacademic performance, how school decen- members of a school council simply becausetralization will eventually affect student they financially support the school.performance in developing countries is less Particularly in developed countries,clear. This section tries to define the ways in parental participation as members of schoolwhich SBM can increase participation and councils or of the group that is implement-transparency and improve school outcomes. ing SBM is distinct from community partic- First, the SBM model must define exactly ipation. However, in developing countries,which powers are vested in which individu- in particular in isolated small or rural com-als or committees and how these powers are munities, parental participation tends to beto be coordinated to make the plan work- synonymous with community participation,able within both the school culture and since in these small communities almostthe available resources. However, the struc- everybody has a family member in school.ture of authority needs to remain flexible The expectation underlying SBM is thatenough to enable school managers to deal greater parental involvement will mean thatwith any unexpected events, which always schools will be more responsive to localseem to emerge during implementation. demands (for example, for better teaching Second, the success of SBM requires the methods or more inputs) and that deci-support of the various school-level stake- sions will be taken in the interests of chil-holders, particularly of teachers (Cook, dren rather than adults. A further hope is2007). Also vital to the success of SBM is that involved parents will become unpaid orfor school principals to support the decen- minimally paid auxiliary staff who will helptralization reform (De Grauwe, 2005). This teachers in classrooms and with other minoris not a foregone conclusion, as principals activities (as happens, for instance, in thewill remain personally accountable for the AGES program in Mexico). Furthermore,performance of their school but will no lon- even if parents are too busy working to helpger have complete control over its manage- in the classroom, they can still encouragement. In effect, they are being asked to give their children to do their homework and toup some authority without a corresponding show them, in this and other ways, that theirdecrease in personal accountability. Once family really values schooling and academicSBM is in place, principals can no longer achievement. Since parents are networkedblame the policies of the school district in various ways with community leaders,when things go wrong. the further hope is that parental support for The support of both local and national SBM will encourage local community lead-governments is also required. SBM by defini- ers to put schools higher on their politicaltion requires these governments to surrender agendas and thus provide the schools withsome power and authority to the school level, more material resources.but they retain the right and ability to reverse Once the nexus of autonomy-participationtheir earlier decision in favor of SBM if they and accountability has been defined and afeel their power is being usurped. realistic management plan has been drawn The final and most important source of up that has the support of all stakeholders,necessary support is from parents and other then it becomes possible to expect bettercommunity members. It is important, how- school outcomes. Thereafter, the hope isever, to distinguish between parents and that the school climate will change as theother community members. While parents stakeholders work together in a collegialare always part of the community that sur- way to manage the school. However, thererounds a school, school councils do not is little evidence that this really happenshave to include parents as members. For in practice. Also, the possibility exists that
  22. 22. 16 WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT? teachers and principals will come to resent the issue that there may be no culture of being constantly monitored by parents and accountability within communities, mean- school council members, which will cause ing that no one would think to question relations within the school to deteriorate. any actions taken by the group running At the same time, the teaching climate the school (De Grauwe, 2005). This can of a school is predicated on, among many be a problem in places where the teacher other factors, how motivated teachers are to is regarded as the ultimate authority by the teach well, whether they know how to teach virtue of being the only “highly” qualified well, how good the various curricula are, individual in a community. Finally, those how eager pupils are to learn, and how much given the responsibility for managing the parents actually support their children’s school may not have the capacity to do learning in whatever ways are practical for so, which points up the need to build the them. Any school that wants to improve its capacity of education stakeholders at the academic record will have to work actively grassroots level to ensure that SBM reforms on some or all of these factors. Sometimes, do not fail in their execution. the obstacles to improving the quality of These caveats help to strengthen our instruction are motivational, sometimes understanding of the pattern of SBM in they are cognitive in the sense of what teach- developing countries (as discussed above). In ers know, and sometimes they are social in particular, the caveats strengthen the notion the sense of petty personal matters that can that the specific type of SBM introduced in prevent teachers from behaving profession- any given country depends (or should ide- ally. Ideally, under SBM, because those who ally depend) on the political economy of the run the school are intimately acquainted particular country. For instance, strong SBM with the individuals who work there, they reforms have been introduced, and have will be able to identify the specific problems been quite successful, in those countries that need to be fixed and use their authority where communities have been forced by to find and implement solutions. some calamity such as war or a natural disas- Some caveats must be mentioned about ter to come together as a group to find ways SBM. Decentralization or devolution does to deliver basic services, including education not necessarily give more power to the (as in the Central American countries). general public because it is susceptible to being captured by elites. As for the rela- tionship between decentralization, pro- Conclusions poor growth, and reduced corruption, While SBM is conceptually clear, there are the evidence is mixed (see, for instance, many ways in which its components can be Alderman, 1998; Faguet, 2001; and Fisman combined and implemented. Pragmatically, and Gatti, 2002). Bardhan and Mookherjee this makes SBM a concept of only mod- (2000 and 2006) and Bardhan (2002) sug- est entitivity, in other words, a concept that gest that there may be numerous reasons cannot have a unique form in all the places why local control over resource alloca- where it is implemented. There are numer- tion or decision-making may not yield the ous ways to combine different degrees of desired outcomes. First, local democracy autonomy, participation, and accountability and political accountability is often weak to create a particular reform. Each variation in developing countries and can lead to has to be appropriate for the particular cul- capture of governance—at the various ture and politics of the country in question. levels—by elite groups. Second, in more The difficulties of designing the ideal reform traditional and rural areas with a history for a given set of circumstances have not of feudalism, the poor or minorities may deterred countries from adopting SBM. Most feel the need for a strong central author- countries have adopted SBM to increase the ity to ensure that services are delivered to participation of parents and communities them and not just to the more powerful in schools, or to empower principals and local citizens. Third, and related to this, is teachers, or to raise student achievement
  23. 23. WHAT IS SCHOOL-BASED MANAGEMENT? 17levels, or, by devolution of authority, to school management? What about the largercreate accountability mechanisms to make community? And is there a difference inthe decision-making process more trans- impacts by countries’ levels of develop-parent. In any case, the hope is that giving ment? Does it matter if the form of SBM ispower to the people who are close to the strong or weak? Does the number and typecore of the service will increase the efficiency of functions devolved to school managersand improve the quality of the service. This make a difference to the outcomes? Does itreport has focused on the concept of SBM matter which group is given the decision-in its different forms and the conceptual making authority and over what functions?framework for understanding it. The few Also, more cost-benefit analysis is needed.rigorous empirical studies that have ana- As introduced in developing countries, SBMlyzed to what extent SBM can measure up appears to be a relatively inexpensive initia-to the claims of its proponents are reviewed tive since it constitutes a change in the locusin World Bank (2007a). of decision-making and not necessarily in The costs of reform are likely to be smaller the amount of resources in the system. Ifthan the benefits, thus increasing the appeal the few positive impact evaluations are true,of the reform. Many SBM reforms have then SBM is a very cost-effective initiative.multiple goals, which include participation For example, in Mexico, the rural school-as an outcome rather than a way to achieve based management program is estimateda goal such as improving learning outcomes. to cost about $6 per student, which, in unitOther SBM reforms have aimed to encour- cost terms, is only about 8 percent of pri-age parental interest in the school as a way to mary education unit expenditures.supplement its recurrent cost financing. It is Another element that will need moreimportant to keep the goals of the program analysis as the study of SBM reforms evolvesclear, to ensure that adequate resources go over time are political economy issues, suchinto the program to fulfill its specific goals, as the roles played by teachers’ unions andand to build the necessary capacity at all political elites, and issues of governance.levels. Complex reforms with multiple goals SBM, like any other kind of reform, requiresand limited resources in a constrained envi- some level of political support, which mayronment can be very difficult to implement. be more important than the technical merit Because of the dearth of widespread evi- of the planned reform in the success or fail-dence on the impact and effectiveness of ure of a strong SBM reform. The extent toSBM in practice, we still have a number of which a shared vision is a key element ofquestions that must go unanswered until different types of SBM reforms is an impor-more evidence is available. The increasing tant future research issue. However, teach-number of evaluations going on at pres- ers and their unions may want to resist anyent—in, among other places, Indonesia, SBM reforms that give parents and commu-Kenya, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka—will nity members more power. How they willteach us a lot about the effectiveness of SBM react to the reform is a crucial factor in itsin various contexts. As the knowledge base eventual success or failure.grows, more attention needs to be given to In general, there are a number of stepsthe specific outcomes that are produced by that national governments can take todifferent forms of SBM. For example, do increase the probability that SBM reformsadministrative control SBMs work better will succeed. First, central governmentsthan, say, professional control SBMs, and in can make local education authorities morewhat contexts? Does more autonomy need accountable by requiring them to involveto be devolved to the school level to improve all school stakeholders in their discus-intermediate and long-term outcomes? sions and to use their feedback to designWhat sort of accountability arrangements policies and interventions that meet localwork best and under what conditions? needs. Meanwhile, national governmentsWhat role do parents play in practice? should design prospective impact evalu-Do they need to be active participants in ations of new programs before they are