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Title: Invloed van evaluatie: overpeinzing van nieuwe informatie en de vorming van de beleidsagenda. Een casusonderzoek binnen het voortgezet speciaal onderwijs.
Authors: Haan de, JH
Keywords: Evaluation
new information
attitude change
agenda setting
contact moment
Schools for children with special educational needs
Dutch Schools Inspectorate
Issue Date: 3-Jul-2014
Publisher: Open Universiteit Nederland
Abstract: Catchphrase The Dutch Schools Inspectorate has a certain perspective on the quality of education. This perspective leads towards a different agenda setting on quality improvement issues of the school, sometimes through a change of attitude of school management. Not included in the research is influence of the sanctioning powers of the Schools Inspectorate Summary The (Dutch) Schools Inspectorate evaluates schools by checking them on the quality of education. School management do influence the quality of the given education. This empirical study focuses on schools for children with special educational needs , more precise in an age of 12-19 years old and having autism. The way the School Inspectorate inspects the schools has changed some years ago and the quality of the given education has improved significantly since then. For that reason influence can supposed of the evaluations of the schools by the Schools Inspectorate. This study examines the influence of new information on the attitude of the school management. A positive attitude, which expresses itselves in commitment, leads to another agenda setting. On the relative influence of the different contact moments of the Schools Inspectorate with the schools has not been published a lot, so this is still an open issue. The main question of this study is therefore: To which extent does elaboration of new information, coming from the evaluation of the school by School Inspectorate, lead to an attitude change of the school management and thus leading to a different agenda setting, stressing quality improvement and which contact moment has most influence? The mechanism that is examined in this study was extracted from conceptual framework of Mark and Henry that describes mechanisms via which influences of evaluations might work. The mechanism is being empirically studied by using a multiple case study of seven equivalent school for children of 12-19 years with special educational needs within the Randstad, a cluster of cities in the west of The Netherlands. Triangulation was applied by interviewing school directors, using a survey for the middle management and studying relevant documents. New information means mostly the use of a new perspective of already known facts. This new perspective is being processed cognitively by discussing it with other people. The attitude of the school leader might change after having elaborated the new perspective, though this is not always demonstrated. The implementation of newly developed policy setting on quality improvement plans is preferably scheduled for a new school year. The visit of the School Inspector with the final discussion is, together with his written report, influencing the attitude of the school leader as well as the policy setting for quality improvement plans. The visit with the final discussion, together with the written report is being used to formulate a list of actions. The study recommends to go into discussion with the School Inspector, prior to his visit. This is because discussing new perspectives, influences attitudes the most. Furthermore, the Schools Inspectorate might already announce new perspectives so they can be elaborated. Most ideal is to include the middle management into the discussions, because they have to implement new policies. Clearly described school identity can be implemented in a planned way and thus information that deviate from the used perspective can easily be recognized and assimilated within the organization when needed. Due to its scope the study has a restricted validity and reliability. It is recommended that the mechanism from the conceptual framework of Mark and Henry be studied in another setting. The sanctioning powers of the School Inspectorate can lead to another explanation of the reasons for a change in policy setting, whether or not through a school leader attitude change. Hence this mechanism was not studied, it could be a rival explanation for the found results.
Appears in Collections:MSc Management Science

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