TEACHER: Miguel Ponce M.S.
STUDENT: Lorena Pruna
Inside-Out" and "Outside-In": Learning from Past and
Present School Improvement Paradigms
INTEGRATIVE PROJECT II
Continuing challenge is to enhance knowledge to,
eventually, provide schools with methods that will
have a high probability of success.
The classic "external R&D" approach and
The "school-based, facultycentered "Approach:
They yield information that can enable us to tackle the
problems of school improvement more effectively.
THE CLASSIC R&D APPROACH
• In the area of program development, this paradigm has
contributed a large number of curricular, instructional, and
technological models that demonstrated effects on student
learning in the field-test sites.
* They not only enabled children to acquire information,
complex concepts, skills, and ways of thinking and solving
problems effectively, but also increased their capacity to learn.
To assess the effectiveness of the R&D approach to school
improvement, we need to consider separately the results of
the research and development component and the results of
the dissemination/implementation component.
* Using scholars and experts within a curriculum area or field of study to design
*Using in-school practitioners to think about and review materials and to fieldtest
documents, procedures, specific strategies, and the program as a whole but
not using them as major program designers;
*Building an indepth, carefully-rationalized curriculum;
*Studying the knowledge base in and out of education for information, instructional
strategies, and materials to support student interaction with this curriculum;
*Maintaining a high level of quality in program materials, with an emphasis on
accuracy of content and instructional strategies that lead students to engage
with the curriculum as young scholars of the field;
* Careful field-testing of the developed program curriculum materials and
* Disseminating only programs that had documented positive effects on students.
THE SCHOOL-BASED, FACULTY-CENTERED APPROACH: approach to school improvement is
"school-based, faculty-centered school improvement" or "site-based management"
• There is some degree of shared decision-making between teachers and
administrators within a school.
• Frequently there is a representative decision-making council, such as a school
Leadership Team or Executive Council.
* Schools using the site-based approach must have district/school board approval
for site-based management.
* In some districts, school staff and Councils have control of the full school
* A school improvement program or plan is generally developed by the school
Council or a task force group.
* Schools often belong to a network or group, composed of schools within and/or
beyond the school district.
* One - School faculties have the capability to engage in site-based research and
To assess the effectiveness of the R&D approach to
school improvement, we need to consider separately
the results of the research and development
component and the results of the
LEARNING FROM THE R&D AND THE SITE-BASED APPROACHES
From Both Paradigms: A Hypothesis about Results.: approaches
depend on developing local faculty energy to generate school
improvement, on the premise that faculties have or can develop the
knowledge necessary to build innovations that conform to the needs
of the local community.
From Both Paradigms: Characteristics of Successful
* All focused their development energies directly on benefits for students.
* All used the knowledge base for ideas or actual innovations
* All generated formative evaluation processes in which they studied the
implementation and its effects on students.
* Most generated broad-based staff involvement schemes, and many included
parents and community/local institutions from both the public and private
* Most provided time for couegial activity that would sustain innovations.
From Comparing Both Paradigms and the Knowledge Base:
• In most schools, the approach, program, or innovation
selected is not supported with adequate staff development to
• In most schools, the redesign of the workplace to sustain
implementation of the approach, program, or innovation
selected does not occur.
• Comparing the operational focus of the R&D approach to the
operational focus of the school-based approach.
COMMON MISTAKES, COMMON SOLUTIONS: INQUIRY, INQUIRY,
Mistakes of two paradigms:
* They believed they had a sure-fire strategy, that they were unlikely to
fail and, thus, didn't conduct school improvement as an inquiry, making
modifications as they went.
* The advocates were sure their strategy would work. When it didn't,
they failed to strengthen the
support systems but, rather, lengthened the time line for success.
The careful tending of the faculty culture, the provision of adequate staff
development, and a focus on the centrality of student learning, there is a
very high probability of success, whichever paradigm is selected.
It is argued that these new models of improvement stand a chance of
overcoming the difficulties that past improvement has had in affecting
outcomes, and a number of areas of potential development for the paradigm
are outlined for it to fulfil its promise, particularly in the areas of context
specificity, focusing on learning in classrooms and concentrating on
understanding 'the capacity for improvement'.