Of Class, Culture, and Accountability

By Jason Brent Ellis, George Lamoureux, Todd Awender, Dwayne Wessel and Jenni Donohoo.

Published by The Learner Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper provides an overview of contemporary educational policy and processes of accountability in primary and secondary education in, Canada, New Zealand and the United States. It offers a critical analysis of policy trends, in the form of three reflections, based on historical documents and research literature. Lines of sight are drawn to issues of access, culture, class, wealth and power and how they shape access to learning. In all three reflections, policy from governing bodies that was put into place with the intent to create equity and accountability has lead to various outcomes for different social classes. Outcomes include factors related to access to higher education, the opening and closing of schools, and changes in teacher credentialing processes. Outcomes have also been seen to lead to both reinforcement and a depolarization of social stratification in the different countries being discussed.

Keywords: Accountability, Class, Culture, Access, Wealth, Education, Policy

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 15, Issue 2, pp.25-34. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 614.518KB).

Dr. Jason Brent Ellis

Assistant Professor, College of Education, Ashland University, Mansfield, OH, USA

Jason Ellis is an assistant professor at Ashland University. His instructional area is education and technology. His research includes such topics as assistive technology use by students with disabilities in higher education and ways of leveling the digital divide through grass-roots community approaches. His current interest in technology use in higher education focuses on destigmatizing disabilities on college campuses through the incorporation of curricular interventions.

George Lamoureux

Brock University, Barrie, Ontario, Canada

George (Joe) Lamoureux is currently the local President of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation District 17 (Simcoe) Teachers’ Union. Starting in August 2008 he will be the President of the Ontario Teachers’ Federation that represents 166,000 teachers in the Province of Ontario, Canada. Joe is a currently a doctoral candidate in the Joint PhD Program offered through Brock University, Lakehead University, The University of Western Ontario, and The University of Windsor. His current research examines the mental health of educators in terms of school board policies and accommodation issues. He plans to defend his thesis in the spring of 2009 and is interested in continuing to study policy and labour law in the future.

Todd Awender

University of Windsor, Windsor, Ontario, Canada

Todd Awender is a Principal in the Greater Essex County District School Board. Todd is a doctoral candidate in the Joint PhD Program offered through the University of Windsor, Brock University, Lakehead University and Western University. His current research examines the various stresses educational administrators experience in their profession, while determining proactive measures that can be implemented to alleviate the indicated areas of high stress. He plans to defend his dissertation in the spring of 2009. Other research interests include effective leadership styles and effective measures used to put policy into practice, with a focus on early intervention strategies.

Dwayne Wessel

University of Windsor, Windsor, Ontario, Canada

Dwayne Wessel is currently completing his Ph.D. in Cognition and Learning at the University of Windsor. He is currently teaching in the Masters of Education Program at Oakland University in Michigan. He has taught psychology classes in behavior and developmental disabilities at the University of Windsor. Dwayne has also earned a master’s degree in education with an endorsement specific to autism from Oakland University as well as a bachelor’s degree in both education and psychology from the University of Windsor.

Jenni Donohoo

University of Windsor, Windsor, Ontario, Canada

Jenni Donohoo is a Research Consultant for the Greater Essex County District School Board. Her current portfolio includes measuring the effectiveness of professional development and evaluating the impact of programs and school Board initiatives in regard to student achievement. Jenni is a doctoral candidate in the Joint PhD Program offered through the University of Windsor, Brock University, Lakehead University, and Western University. Her current research examines the relationship between strategy-based instruction and metacognitive awareness. She plans to defend her dissertation this winter. Other research interests include sources of self-efficacy for beginning teachers and the transfer of skills and knowledge into practice based on various professional delivery models.


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