Week 2 Progress

This past week I have continued searching for sources and reading their contents. I began looking more at books and journal articles. I was tasked with looking in specific journals and book publishers. I was also tasked with reading parts of Splintered Accountability State Governance and Education Reform by Arnold F. Shober. I was told to read parts of the book and to think about the autonomy and scope of government agencies. This book helped reinforce ideas I had discovered in other sources I had read. From reading this book, along with outside articles, I have learned that state education agencies are tricky. They are all different and what they are each capable of is in great part determined by the people within the agency. Agencies must keep policy makers, their party, and local government satisfied. This is often impossible because there are conflicting interests. Leaders of these agencies must be strategic in effecting change and must use their power to change the scope of their agency. Agencies want to be autonomous so they can enact reforms and see them through to the end without other reforms overlapping and stopping progress. With this autonomy agencies have power over implementing reforms, policy, and rules. Agencies can increase their scope meaning to increase the tasks and policy areas they wish to focus on. Another thing I learned this past week is that leadership can influence the scope of an agency. Agency leaders can work with researchers, policymakers, and administrators to influence change. State education chiefs have a lot of control and can persuade others to follow a new direction for different reforms. I’ve also learned that agency reforms often end before results are seen. Aside from all these obstacles and organizations, there are also education researchers that can come in and influence agencies and policymakers by providing suggestion for types of reform. All these complex factors have some say in school reform and because of this, agencies must work with other organizations to be successful.


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