Benjamin Banneker high school : a case study in urban school decision making



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The focus of the current study was to describe how Mason Independent School District (ficticious name), a large urban school district, proceeded to plan and implement a pilot instructional program whose purpose was to upgrade education in an inner-city secondary school. Utilizing relevant theoretical structures from organizational theory, studies of community power, the politics of education, and leadership theory, the decision-making process which MISD followed was analyzed. What emerged was a description of how decision-making in a large school district balanced community, sub-group and individual needs with the stated goals and procedures of the organization. A case study approach was utilized. Information was gatehred through observation of public meetings, formal and informal interviewing of participants, and collection and analysis of reports, memoranda, and other correspondence produced by MISD personnel and interested groups. Field notes were made during all meetings and interviews and provided a chronological log of events. Protocols were written as a summary of the notes. Other information that was collected and filed included media reports on the district, official documents from the district including memoranda, budgetary information, transcripts of official meetings, and documentation of the various innovative plans which were considered during the study. The constant comparative method of analysis (Glaser and Strauss, 1967) was used. By following that process, categories and hypotheses were built, analyzed and evaluated as an on-going process. [...]



School management and organization--Decision making, Education--Political aspects