教育管理 management of education
Chapter 1 – Introduction 简介
The management of educational organisations is a field of study and practice concerned with the way educational institutions operate. The word ‘management’ can be defined as “a set of activities directed towards efficient and effective utilisation of organisational resources in order to achieve organisational goals” (Sapre, 2002, p.102). According to Cuban (1988), management is more perceived as a maintenance activity as compared to leadership, which is more related to change within an organisation. In their study of twelve ‘effective’ schools, Day et al. (2001) concluded that management is heavily related to systems and ‘paper’ while leadership is more about developing people.
In the module “Managing Educational Organisations”, several important issues have been raised and for the purpose of this assignment, the models of educational management put forward by Tony Bush (1986, 1995, 2003) will be discussed.
Chapter 2 – Tony Bush’s Models of Educational Management Tony Bush教育管理模式
With regards to managing educational organisations, Glatter (1979, p.16) states that studies on management are concerned with “the internal operation of educational institutions, and also with their relationships with their environment, that is, the communities in which they are set, and with the governing bodies to which they are formally responsible”. That is, school heads together with subordinates have to be involved with both internal and external audiences in leading their school. According to Bolam (1999, p.194), educational management can be defined as ‘an executive function for carrying out agreed policy’. He differentiates management from educational leadership which has ‘at its core the responsibility for policy formulation and, where appropriate, organisational transformation’ (p. 194). For Bush (2003), educational management has to be essentially concerned with the purpose or aims of education.
Tony Bush (2003) classifies educational management into six models, namely, formal, collegial, political, subjective, ambiguity and cultural. In the following paragraphs, I will detail only four of the six models due to the word limitation of the assignment and discuss how they impact upon me.#p#分页标题#e#
2.1 – Formal Model
Formal models are based upon hierarchical structures. In other words, authority flows from top to bottom and power is concentrated at the top. Thus, educational organisations are seen as separate parts which are interrelated. As such, in most schools in Mauritius, teachers are accountable to head of departments who, in turn, are answerable to the rector. In private schools, the rector is, in turn, answerable to the manager and in some cases, like at my school, the manager is himself accountable to the board of governors. In public schools, rectors are accountable to the respective zone directorates which, in turn, are themselves answerable to the Minister of Education. It can thus be said that the hierarchy system characterises a means of control for leaders over their staff.
Also, schools are seen as goal-seeking organisations whereby agreed goals are pursued using rational means. Moreover, school heads, according to Bush (2003, p.37), are answerable to sponsoring bodies for the activities of their schools. A further characteristic of formal models is that promotion is on the basis of seniority(Bush 2003). As stated in the last Pay Research Bureau (PRB) report in Mauritius, published in 2013, the nomination of heads of departments in colleges is by seniority.
Formal models in educational organisations consists of four major aspects, namely:
According to Begley (2008), school heads must keep fundamental purposes/goals in mind. Fishman (1999) argues that goals should be set in such a way that they are in the interests of the students, taking into consideration their abilities and the peculiarities of the social environment.
The roles of teachers and other ancillary staffs should be clearly defined within the structure. That is, their duties and responsibilities should be clearly defined. Accountabilities should also be well-stated.
The environment consists of the closed and open systems. In closed systems, accountability is stressed more towards the school officials rather than the students and parents. In open systems, schools are more interactive and responsive to the changing environment and at the same time, communicate with the local community.
The managerial leadership is most applied to the formal models (Bush, 2008). So, it is the person at the apex of the official hierarchical structure who sets the tone of the organisation. Leithwood et al. (1999, p. 14) argue that leaders focus on functions, tasks, and behaviours, which drive the work of others in the organisation.
Some of the limitations of the formal models are:
Characterising schools as goal-oriented may be unrealistic.#p#分页标题#e#
Contribution made by teachers or any other individual may be undervalued or overlooked.
It is assumed that power resides at the apex of the pyramid.
It is assumed that organisations are relatively stable.
2.2 – Collegial Model
Brundrett (1998, p.305) defines collegiality as teachers working in collaboration with other teachers. Furthermore, Little (1990, p.166) argues that when teachers work in collaboration, “something is gained” and they work individually, “something is lost”.
Also known as the democratic model, the collegial model places great emphasis on the sharing of power and decision-making amongst some or all individuals working in an organisation (Bush, 2003). It is assumed that policies are formed and decision-making passes through a process of discussion, sharing of ideas and mutual consensus. Some or all members are empowered as they are thought to share the same aims, vision and understanding of the institution. However, this in itself is one major weakness of this model as the effectiveness of any organisation is heavily dependent on the values and attitudes that members of the organisation hold.
The collegial model supposes that decisions are reached through consensus of some or all members of an organisation. However, in large organisations, the decision process might be slow and complicated. Webb and Vulliamy (1996, p. 445) refer to the time consuming nature of meetings as “the discussion phase seemed to go on and on”. Hence, small organisation, like pre-primary and primary schools can apply this model better compared to large organisations such as secondary schools and universities. Furthermore, most school heads are accountable to different external groups. Hence, decisions resulting from a collegial process might not get the support of the external groups. One such example is the creation of ‘zone directorates’ some years back. This resulted in the devolution of management decisions and accountability to the zone directorates.
Another limitation of this model is that since each person is motivated by different motivators, it becomes difficult to have a set of shared objectives as everyone will want to fulfil his objectives where this participatory method can be a focal point to disagreement rather than consensus. Wallace (1989) argues that teachers may not welcome collegiality because they are disinclined to accept any intermediate authority between themselves and the head of school.
Lastly, when adopting a collegial model, there is a tendency to have a clash between the participative nature of decision-making and the structural and bureaucratic management style. Brundrett (1998, p.313) claims that “collegiality is inevitably the handmaiden of an ever increasingly centralized bureaucracy”.
2.3 – Political Model
This model is based upon the principle that groups within an educational organisation have two types of interest, professional and personal. According to Bush (2003), policies and decisions are emerged through a process of negotiation and bargaining. Conflicts are regarded as a natural and it is the role of the management to control the political behaviour within the organisation. Also, the goals of the organization are unstable as each interest group or coalition attempts to bargain with other members to influence goals and decision-making process (Bolman & Deal, 1991. p. 186).
One important aspect of this model is power. Power of the individuals in the organisation and their ability to mobilise resources of power to support their own interests determine the process of decision-making. Morgan (1997, pp. 170-171) claims that power “is the medium through which conflicts of interest are ultimately resolved. Power influences who gets what, when and how . . . the sources of power are rich and varied”. Bush (1995) states that the association of power, conflict and interests is the basis of the political model.
During the examination periods in schools, it is often observed how influential teachers try to use their status and power to have their papers set first so as they would have much more time for correction or have less amount of invigilation time. As such, this often creates conflicts within the staffroom. In extreme cases, I witnessed violence among some teachers during the examination periods.
The main problem with this model is that power, bargaining, negotiation are too endorsed by the members that other standards of the organization are not recognized. Policies are formed but little attention is paid to its right implementation. Moreover, the institution is regarded as subgroups rather than a whole integrated unit where all members are committed towards the same goals. There is less room for a harmonious environment where colleagues work together as a team. Thus, the ethical code of teaching is somehow befouled.
2.4 – Cultural Model
The central tenet of such model is the emphasis on the values, beliefs and norms of individuals and how these coalesce into shared organizational meanings. These meanings are reinforced through symbols and rituals. The values and beliefs of the members of the organisation underlie the behaviours and norms of the organisations. According to Bush (1995), those individuals who exemplify the values and beliefs of the organisations become the heroines and heroes of the institutions.
Bush (1995, p.130) argues that the technical aspects of institutions are inadequate for schools to aim at excellence and the only way to achieve a high standard is by focussing on values and attitudes which “produces a more balanced portrait of educational institutions”. For Fidler et al. (1997), culture symbolises a stabilising and unifying force for and within an organisation. They describe culture as “the distinctive way in which organisation members go about their work and relate to each other in a particular organisation” (Fidler et al., 1997, p.35). Bush (1995) and Bottery (1992) argue that the common values and the beliefs shared by the different members of the organisations help to contribute to its effective running and uniqueness.#p#分页标题#e#
The above arguments suit well the management of some Mauritian schools. For instance, confessional schools as well as schools teaching academic and Islamic values in parallel, such as the Doha Academy, have a strong school culture which contributes largely to the success of the education there. Moreover, similar to the Loretto College’s uniform which has become a symbol of pride for some, the Doha Secndary School Girl’s outfit has become a symbol of humbleness and discipline down the years, and it is that culture which is attracting lots of students, even non-Muslims, to the Doha Secondary School. Hodgkinson (1991) rightly points out that the policy and aim of the school are not those of the mass production of educated people but emphasis is laid upon the quality of education, the personal development and moral formation of the individual.
Among the limitations of this model:
Ethical dilemmas may arise as cultural leadership may be seen as the imposition of a culture by leaders on other members of the organization. Morgan (1997) refers to “a process of ideological control” and warns of the risk of “manipulation” because of the search of a monoculture and supremacy of a dominant culture.
Morgan (1997) suggests that the cultural model may be unduly mechanistic, assuming that leaders can determine the culture of the organization. In other words, while they have influence over the evolution of culture by espousing desired values, they cannot ensure the emergence of a monoculture. Subcultures will be formed which might be in conflict with the organizational policy but which remains a fundamental elements in thriving institutions.
Since the focal point of this model is on symbols, such as rituals and ceremonies, other important elements of an organisation may be underrated. Furthermore, symbols may not represent the actual reality of the school. Hoyle (1986, p. 166) used the expression “innovation without change” to refer to schools which supposedly have gone through a change process but in reality, everything is as before.
Chapter 3 – Conclusion 结论
It can be easily deduced from the above theories that each model of educational management proposed by Tony Bush characterises different ways of looking at educational organisations. In fact, each model provides valid arguments but their relevance varies according to the context. Each event, situation or problem can be explained using one or more of these models. So, based on the nature of educational organisations, no single approach can be ultimately the best to understand situations and events prevailing in schools.
From experience, when the Staff Development Programme (SDP) was launched at my school, initially, the formal model was applied whereby teaching and non-teaching staff were asked to sign a circular from the Manager regarding attending the SDP, with emphasis that no leave would be accepted. After the first session, bargaining and negotiation started, especially regarding the time schedule of the programme. The programme in itself was based on the cultural model, incorporating Islamic values together with pedagogical and managerial issues.#p#分页标题#e#
Therefore, to be an efficient head of school, I believe that it is wise to make use of the theoretical pluralism so as not to restrain oneself into a one-dimensional management. Also, due to the Mauritian context, it is equally wise not to forget the cultural dimension of schools as most often, it is a determining factor for their effectiveness.