School-based Change in the Era of High Accountability and Low Autonomy

By Rene Martinez.

Published by The International Journal of Educational Organization and Leadership

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: June 6, 2014 $US5.00

Increasing expectations and greater demands for more effective schools have placed growing attention on the critical role of school principals. Grass roots reform efforts generally fall into two categories—those focused on changes in curriculum and instruction and those focused on changes in school leadership and procedures. Research suggests the quality of curriculum and instruction directly effects student learning, as does the significant role of school leadership. This article focuses on one principal’s journey to affect school change in three areas of school leadership—positive influence, shared leadership, and changes to curriculum and instruction using a part-to-whole approach. Through this journey, we discover how the principal of Honolulu High School (HHS) influenced school reform in the era of high accountability, and low teacher autonomy in the American educational system brought on by No Child Left Behind. Though at times she felt frustrated, this principal is energized by the direction her school is moving in the promise of school change. Research for this article was part of an applied ethnographic case study (Martinez, 2010).

Keywords: Educational Leadership, School-based Change, Curriculum and Instruction

The International Journal of Educational Organization and Leadership, Volume 20, Issue 3, June 2014, pp.15-22. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: June 6, 2014 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 436.833KB)).

Dr. Rene Martinez

Consultant, University of Hawaii - Manoa, Honolulu, HI, USA