Chapter 5
The Effects of School-Based Management Plans

ANITA A. SUMMERS

The Wharton School, and Graduate School of Education,

University of Pennsylvania

AMY W. JOHNSON

The Institute for Research on Higher Education,

University of Pennsylvania

Virtually every school district in the United States is actively reviewing the concept of increasing the decision-making autonomy of individual schools—developing school-based management (SBM) plans. The objective of this chapter is to review the evidence produced by reasonably systematic studies on the impact of increased autonomy on the performance of schools, particularly on the achievement performance of the children in these schools.

Questions about the effectiveness of SBM are part of a long-standing debate about the best paradigm for the organizational structure for the delivery of primary and secondary education. One paradigm, not currently in favor, is to increase centralization by expanding the scope of governance. The arguments for increasing centralization run along several lines: (1) the legal boundaries of political jurisdictions, determined by a set of historical factors, are irrelevant to the determination of appropriate educational standards that are for the good of the whole; (2) there are economies of scale; (3) there are substantial externality and public good characteristics in K-12 education, and these require governance over a large number of districts to ensure consistency in the delivery of standards that are for the good of the whole; (4) the equal educational opportunity clauses of state constitutions require more equality in service levels, and this can only be achieved through large-area governance mechanisms.

An alternative paradigm, now being widely embraced, and which is consistent with the view of public choice theorists, is that a larger number of smaller units is the preferred governance structure. There are a number of arguments for decentralization: (1) there are many diseconomies of scale—many negative externalities of a very heterogeneous student body and substantial inefficiencies in



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--> Chapter 5 The Effects of School-Based Management Plans ANITA A. SUMMERS The Wharton School, and Graduate School of Education, University of Pennsylvania AMY W. JOHNSON The Institute for Research on Higher Education, University of Pennsylvania Virtually every school district in the United States is actively reviewing the concept of increasing the decision-making autonomy of individual schools—developing school-based management (SBM) plans. The objective of this chapter is to review the evidence produced by reasonably systematic studies on the impact of increased autonomy on the performance of schools, particularly on the achievement performance of the children in these schools. Questions about the effectiveness of SBM are part of a long-standing debate about the best paradigm for the organizational structure for the delivery of primary and secondary education. One paradigm, not currently in favor, is to increase centralization by expanding the scope of governance. The arguments for increasing centralization run along several lines: (1) the legal boundaries of political jurisdictions, determined by a set of historical factors, are irrelevant to the determination of appropriate educational standards that are for the good of the whole; (2) there are economies of scale; (3) there are substantial externality and public good characteristics in K-12 education, and these require governance over a large number of districts to ensure consistency in the delivery of standards that are for the good of the whole; (4) the equal educational opportunity clauses of state constitutions require more equality in service levels, and this can only be achieved through large-area governance mechanisms. An alternative paradigm, now being widely embraced, and which is consistent with the view of public choice theorists, is that a larger number of smaller units is the preferred governance structure. There are a number of arguments for decentralization: (1) there are many diseconomies of scale—many negative externalities of a very heterogeneous student body and substantial inefficiencies in

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--> uniform regulations for different communities; (2) the larger the unit of governance, the less able citizens are to express their individual preferences, which the education system's organization ought to satisfy insofar as possible; (3) the smaller the unit of governance, the more parents will participate, contributing to higher student achievement; and (4) if parental choice of schools is added to the plan for decentralization, competition will improve the service quality per dollar. The next section of this chapter develops a taxonomy for grouping the very wide range of characteristics and objectives of the SBM plans that have been introduced in recent years. It is important to observe that the enthusiasm for SBM, expressed in hundreds of articles and papers, does not, on the whole, stem from positive student achievement results. The third section describes our search for all available systematic studies of SBM, the complete results of which are available from us directly. Section four describes the findings of the 20 systematic studies we found, concentrating particularly on those that used as an outcome measure actual student achievement, in contrast to teacher, principal, or parent perceptions. The conclusion of this review is that there is no collective evidence of positive effects because the methodologies of the studies are inadequate, and because even the few results based on some empirical data have not, on the whole, been positive. The last section suggests what the characteristics of an adequate evaluation of SBM reform should be. Experimentation with new governance structures is essential, but to do so without adequate evaluation is to repeat the errors of the past. Trade-offs are required, but dropping ineffective methods and adding effective ones require serious assessments of effectiveness. The country is not now doing this for the most widespread educational reform currently being considered. Meaning of School-Based Management While there are many ways in which school-based management can be practiced, all forms are based on the premise that the school site becomes the central locus of control in decision making. The rationale behind SBM is that those who are closest to the primary business of schools will make the best-informed decisions. The essential purpose of redistributing decision-making authority to increase the autonomy of the critical stakeholders is to improve the instructional process and, although rarely stated, student outcomes. SBM is frequently advocated on the grounds that it increases the accountability of school-site personnel. Schools are forced to become more responsive to local needs through the inclusion of parents and community members on decision-making committees. In exchange for increased autonomy, schools are usually required to report the results of SBM efforts to the central administration. The term "school-based management" has many variations—school-site management, school-site autonomy, shared decision making, shared governance,

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--> school improvement program (or project or process), school-based budgeting, and administrative decentralization. In part because school-based management is intended to enable schools to respond to local needs, it can vary greatly from school to school in three fundamental characteristics: the authority that has been delegated, the resources (inputs) devoted to implementation of SBM, and the stated objectives in introducing SBM. Authority Delegated The cornerstone of school-based management is delegating greater authority to the local school site. The nature of this increased authority is defined by three elements: the areas of decision making to which the increased authority applies, the constraints limiting exercise of that authority, and the collection of individuals who receive the new authority. Areas of Authority Clune and White (1988) define the areas of authority as curriculum, budget, and personnel; Malen et al. (1990) refer to budget, personnel, and program. Here, delegation of authority refers to areas of curriculum, budget, personnel, and strategic planning. Strategic planning, of course, frequently involves decision making in all of the other three areas, but it is often a distinct function of school committees. Some schools may be given authority in all of these domains. Others may be given more limited authority. A school may be charged with outlining its strategic long-term plan, for example, without acquiring any increased budget authority. Another school might be allowed to make recommendations for selection of a principal but have little voice in curriculum restructuring. Constraints to Authority Most of the increased autonomy or decision-making authority is constrained by "the web of rules embedded in the broader system" (Malen et al., 1990, p. 301). The extent of these constraints or the existence of procedures designed to exempt certain decisions or processes from constraint varies widely by school. Some superintendents have made great efforts to reduce the constraints imposed by central administration standards or state mandates. Some unions have cooperated in allowing procedural deviations from preexisting contract stipulations. In some cases, however, state mandates or district regulations preclude any possibility of substantive or autonomous decision making. Thus, for certain schools, increased authority consists solely of being permitted to make recommendations to the central administration; for others, significant discretion and flexibility are the norm.

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--> The extent of the constraints imposed determines whether school-site personnel have planning responsibility or actual decision-making authority, an important but subtle distinction (Malen et al., 1990). Developing school improvement plans without significant authority for curriculum, budget, and personnel decisions, merely making recommendations to the central administration; or merely designing disciplinary policies and instructional strategies does not mean that the traditional governance structure has been altered. And the risk may be even greater. Once the initial excitement that accompanies this anticipated change wears off, school-site personnel may lose interest if only a marginal increase in authority is granted. Recipients of Increased Authority A third question about governance reform is who will exercise the increased authority. Most schools with some form of SBM have what is commonly referred to as a "school-site council." Sometimes council members are elected: sometimes they participate voluntarily. Most councils comprise some combination of teachers, parents, principal, community members, and, in secondary schools, students. But councils are conducted in different ways. The principal, for example, may or may not chair the group and in the former case may or may not involve others. Which members develop meeting agendas varies across schools, as do the types of involvement afforded parents and community members. In some cases, decision-making authority clearly rests with the principal; in others it is held by a representative group in which the principal retains no particular advantage. Council composition is very relevant in determining which traditional power or influence relationships are maintained or altered. Inputs to School-Based Management A second characteristic that contributes to the final shape and scope of SBM in a given school or district is the allocation of resources for program implementation. Very little specificity is given in the individual SBM descriptions of these resources. Dollar resource estimates are mostly absent and, where given, anecdotal. Three kinds of resources are referred to in establishing SBM—training of school personnel, government or foundation funding, and new positions within the central administration or at the local school site. In some cases, no such resources are provided; in others two are used; occasionally, allocations are made in all three areas. There is simply no evidence in the published literature on which to base cost estimates. Many school personnel indicate that lack of adequate time, funding, and training are impediments to successful implementation, but the data available on both inputs and outputs make it impossible to render a judgment on the efficiency of the current allocation of resources.

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--> Objectives The variety of objectives attributed to SBM efforts suggests that this restructuring movement is designed to address a wide range of issues and problems at the local school site. In one school the emphasis might be on teacher empowerment and increased professionalism; in another it might be school climate. Most project descriptions mention such objectives as increased involvement, ownership, empowerment, professionalism, and leadership of personnel. Many mention efficiency, accountability, and improved educational programs. Some mention student achievement. Although rarely mentioned from project descriptions explicitly, it can be inferred that schools often believe that SBM will create a chain reaction, improving the morale and planning efforts of school personnel, which in turn will improve student achievement. Few schools, however, use concrete measurement criteria of student outcomes in their efforts to assess whether restructuring efforts are effective. The lack of quantitative evidence, and the overwhelming portion of SBM descriptions devoted to discussing stakeholder empowerment, underscore the absence of focus on student achievement. Sources Background information on school-based management and evaluations of individual schools and districts was collected from a variety of sources. We conducted a computer search of the Educational Research Information Clearinghouse (ERIC) files, focusing primarily on files from 1983 through 1993. The initial general search, using such ERIC descriptors as "school-based management," "school-site management," and "participative decision making," uncovered over 800 documents. The great majority of these consisted of general discussions on the topic or were brief descriptions. These are not included in the bibliography in this chapter. A more targeted search located 70 sources that purported to be project evaluations. Most of the literature, however, offered cursory descriptions of the implementation process and relied heavily on impressionistic reports regarding restructuring outcomes. Of the 70 sources, only 20 exhibited a systematic approach to evaluation, and only seven included a measurable assessment of student outcomes based on actual student performance. At the same time, selected superintendents, researchers in the field, and educational organizations were contacted in an effort to identify other SBM evaluations that specifically included student achievement indicators. Some of this outreach yielded additional useful information. Most of the individuals contacted, however, confirmed the results of the ERIC searches; very few systematic investigations of the impact of SBM on student achievement have been done. The 20 systematic evaluations we found were summarized in terms of five broad characteristics: the form of SBM (how and to whom authority is del-

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--> egated), the inputs to SBM (resources made available specifically for SBM implementation), the stated objectives of SBM and the associated measurement instruments, impediments to successful implementation, and outcomes of SBM and the qualitative and quantitative techniques used to derive them. The process of forcing the content of the studies into some sort of uniform format was laborious because the studies tended to be either diffuse descriptions or produced every permutation and combination of data arrayed into dozens of tables. Brief summaries of a number of characteristics of each study, including the statistical measurements and techniques used and results with respect to student achievement outcomes, are given in Table 5.1. School-Based Management and Student Outcomes Our review of the literature, as indicated earlier, revealed the general characteristics of SBM efforts. The studies, and therefore their evaluations, concentrated on changing methods of governance and changing relationships among the stakeholders as governance structures change. There is an implicit assumption that, if the processes of decision making change, schools will be more effective instruments for educating children. The studies were designed, however, to look at the effects of SBM on governance processes, not educational outcomes, just as SBM efforts are designed to alter stakeholder relationships via governance changes, not to change student performance. Essentially, the large literature on the effectiveness of SBM ignored the effects on student achievement, either because the SBM advocates do not regard achievement as an important output measure or because there is faith that increased school discretion will increase student learning. As a result, there is little evidence to support the notion that SBM is effective in increasing student performance. There are very few quantitative studies, the studies are not statistically rigorous, and the evidence of positive results is either weak or nonexistent. Summary of 20 Studies What did the 20 relatively systematic studies reveal about the authority delegated under a specific SBM program, the inputs to the program, the explicitly stated objectives, and, most importantly, the outcomes? Authority Delegated The four major areas where schools introduced greater discretionary power were curriculum, budget, personnel, and strategic planning. Eleven of the plans delegated increased authority to all four areas, six of the plans to three areas, and three of the plans to two areas. With a few exceptions (strategic planning in Hammond, Indiana; Chicago; New York City; Dade County, Florida; and Mon-

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--> roe County, Florida; budgetary functions in Chicago and Monroe County; and curriculum and personnel in Chicago), the authority delegation, when given, was partial. In these exceptions it was complete. A dominant characteristic, then, in the systematically reviewed plans is that there was an increase in the delegation of authority in most of the major administrative areas. But partial delegation—an advisory, rather than decision-making role—was the norm. Inputs All but two of the 20 SBM plans involved additional fiscal resources in the form of increased budgets to facilitate new activities and training programs for the participants. In most cases, new administrative positions were created to administer SBM. In the Canadian (Brown, 1987) and Riverside, California (Wissler, 1984) programs, more discretion was given to the schools, but not more dollars. Despite several years of SBM experimentation, reflected in more than 800 published reports on the initiatives, it is not possible to estimate the costs of SBM. The omission of this information from the hundreds of descriptions and evaluations suggests that little emphasis has been placed on the financial resources required, and none on the opportunity costs. Objectives All of the programs were intended to empower teachers and give principals more independent decision-making authority. Most sought greater involvement of parents and/or the community. Although most stated in very general terms that improved student achievement or learning was an objective, five did not—Edmonton, Canada (Brown, 1987); Chesterfield, Missouri (Burns and Howes, 1988); Cleveland, Ohio (Dentler et al., 1987); Memphis, Tennessee (Smith et al., 1991); and Riverside, California (Wissler, 1984). Only three—New York City (Kelley, 1988; New York City Board of Education, 1992); Chicago (Consortium on Chicago School Research, 1993); and Philadelphia (Winfield and Hawkins, 1993)—specified achievement targets in quantitative terms. In terms of space allocated in the statements of objectives, the prime target of SBM was organizational—changed governance, changed decision-making processes, and changed stakeholder relationships. Even in the 20 studies where it was mentioned, improved student achievement received relatively little attention. Outcomes Six of the studies reported decisively that there was enhanced teacher and principal empowerment and other stakeholder involvement, seven reported evidence of some increase in autonomy, and the remaining seven had either no significant results or negative ones in terms of these criteria. The results of SBM

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--> on the ultimately important outcome, student achievement, were not reassuring. Of the 20 studies, nine reported no results; three asserted positive results but gave no achievement data; one asserted no results or negative ones but gave no achievement data; two included achievement data and showed positive results; and five included achievement data and showed no results or negative results. The results of SBM, then, appear to be some greater sense of empowerment and involvement of the stakeholders, although not uniformly so, but there is virtually no evidence that such changes produce improvements in student performance. Of particular concern is that the four evaluations using hard data on student achievement as outcomes and adequate controls in the evaluation1 showed negative results or no significant benefits from SBM (Table 5.1). Summary of Four Evaluations Using Student Scores and Controls Four studies warrant individual attention because student achievement was regarded as an important objective and received relatively careful evaluation.2 In these evaluations hard data were used to measure student performance, and some control factors other than SBM were introduced to isolate the effects of SBM. Dade County, Florida (Collins and Hanson, 1991) The Dade County Office of Educational Accountability mounted a three-year evaluation of its SBM program. The first two years of evaluation focused on process characteristics, such as how principals and teachers thought the implementation was proceeding and the attitudes of the stakeholders. The third year of evaluation continued addressing the process but focused on the impact of SBM on a wide variety of performance indicators, including student achievement and attendance. In the 33 pilot schools selected to test an SBM program, a 5- to 12-person faculty council (consisting of the principal, other administrators, and faculty members) was set up as the decision-making body. The councils were supported by a number of faculty subcommittees. The faculty councils were given partial 1   These are marked with an asterisk and without a ''C" in the "Statistical Problems" column of Table 5.1. 2   Subsequent to submission of this article for publication, we reviewed the literature on school-based management for 1994 and 1995. One additional study is worthy of note. It evaluates the restructuring efforts in the Chicago public schools. Student achievement is the primary measurable objective; no input controls were used (Walberg and Niemiec, 1994). The results of this study were: between 1989 and 1991, student achievement scores in reading and math declined in the elementary and high schools; student attendance rates did not change noticeably; and student graduation rates declined.

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--> authority for curriculum, budget, and personnel and virtually full authority for strategic planning. More teacher empowerment was a stated objective. Other objectives included increased discretionary resources to schools, increased evaluation of instruction, and increased community and parental involvement. Only late in the project was improved student achievement—measured by the Stanford Achievement and Florida State Student Assessment test scores, days attended, the number of disciplinary referrals, and the number of dropouts—made an explicit objective. The 33 schools were selected on the basis of a call for proposals from the 259 schools in Dade County. Student performance was not included as an objective of the experiment. Fifty-three schools applied; 33 were selected on the basis of "most likely to succeed." Changes in the results of the 33 SBM schools were assessed in relation to changes in the performance of all non-SBM schools by simple comparisons of results, with tests of significance applied to some of the differences. No other controls were used. The results showed no significant change in test scores at any level of schooling—elementary, middle, and senior high schools—or for reading or math separately. Student attendance appeared to improve slightly in SBM schools but not decisively so. Suspension rates were significantly lower in SBM middle and senior high schools in comparison to non-SBM schools, as were dropout rates. Dade County's evaluation offers some support for the proposition that increased school-site discretion may improve student performance. Although no improvement in test scores was observed, improvements in attendance and dropout rates might reasonably be expected to translate into higher achievement in the long run, since they suggest that the learning environment is more attractive to students. The positive results were small, however, and no effort was made to identify the characteristics of the SBM schools, other than having an SBM program, that might explain even these small differences. The policy force of this evaluation, therefore, is weak. Dade County, Florida (Taylor and Bogotch, 1992) Taylor and Bogotch conducted an independent evaluation of Dade County's restructuring efforts. They looked at 33 schools in the county, 16 of which were restructured and 17 of which were used as comparison schools. Their analysis of the delegation of curriculum, budget, personnel, and strategic planning authority matched that of the study by Collins and Hanson (1991). Their analysis of the SBM objectives for teachers and students was the same, although there were differences in the objectives of the two Dade County studies for other stakeholders. Taylor and Bogotch's evaluation showed no significant correlations between student achievement and teacher participation in deciding what and how to teach, or subject and grade assignment. Their study is one of the most sophisticated of the SBM evaluations, and it found no positive effects of this restructuring. This study adds an important dimension to the SBM evaluation by examining the

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--> TABLE 5.1 Summaries of Effects of SBM on Student Outcomes in 20 Systematic Evaluations     Authority Delegateda   Study State Unit of Observation Curriculum Budget Personnel Plan Inputs to SBM B-1 CA 197 elementary and secondary schools in 46 districts 1 1 1 1 State funding Training Student Outcomes Student achievement according to direct survey results of teachers: 8% responded substantially higher achievement, 26% somewhat higher, 31% slightly higher, 24% no change, 6% lower achievement. Student achievement, according to regressions on survey data, is significantly affected by several SBM characteristics. B-2   Schools in 2 districts: Edmonton schools in Alberta and Langley school district in British Columbia 0 1 1 0 Increased principals' discretion Student Outcomes Some increase in junior and senior high school students' satisfaction in learning was reported. Evidence on learning outcomes was not available. B-3 MO Parkway school district 1 1 1 1 Additional staff Local funding Training Student Outcomes None stated. C-1 NY 29 schools in New York City 1 0 0 1 Additional staff Chapter 1 funding Foundation funding Stipends for meetings Training Student Outcomes Student discipline and attendance improved (no data available). Test scores increased in some schools (no data available). C-2 IN Hammond school district 1 1 1 2 Additional staff Foundation funding Local funding Released time Training Student Outcomes Achievement improved, failures decreased, and attendance increased (no data presented, although article indicates that district scores show steady improvement since 1984; Hammond High School showed "remarkable turnaround" in 2 years in these measures.) C-3* FL 33 pilot schools in Dade County: 16 restructured schools and 17 comparison schools 1 1 1 2- Additional staff Consultants Financial awards State funding Training Student Outcomes Compared with all Dade County public school students, SBM students performed no differently on Stanford and state student tests, maintained slightly higher attendance over pilot period, had significantly better suspension figures, and showed a significant decline in dropouts.

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--> Objectives for Students Measurement Instrument Statistical Techniques Statistical Problemsb Improved achievement Student interviews Test scores Teacher surveys Ethnographic procedures Survey percentages Regression analysis C, D Greater educational focus Student surveys Data reduction techniques B, C, D Programs responsive to students' needs   Survey percentages   Increased participation Superintendent's perceptions None A, C, D Improved educational quality       Improved achievement SBM committee surveys Survey scores B, C, D Concentration on basic skills       Improved achievement Committee perceptions None A, C, D Improved attendance       Improved achievement Test scores Tests of significance D More evaluation of instruction Student data Comparison of SBM schools with non-SBM schools  

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-->     Authority Delegateda   Study State Unit of Observation Curriculum Budget Personnel Plan Inputs to SBM C-4* IL Over 400 elementary schools in Chicago 2- 2 2 2 Option to remove staff Regulatory relief Student Outcomes No changes in attendance rates at the 6 schools studied in depth (which had high rates to begin with). 5 of the 6 showed declines in mobility rates from 1989–1992; 3 of the 6 showed increases in enrollment; all showed reduced numbers of retained students. Little indication that student achievement is yet the primary target of reform. Evaluator does not regard achievement goals to be realistic. D-1 WA Bellevue school district 1 1 1 1 Training Student Outcomes School-centered decision making (SCDM) has helped schools gain ground in helping all students become successful learners: the average rating scale score in 1991–1992 over all stakeholders surveyed was 2.0. Parents felt that their children are sufficiently challenged academically: 1 of 3 stakeholders had stronger agreement with this statement in 1991–1992 than in 1989–1990; the average rating scale score in 1991–1992 over all stakeholders surveyed was 2.4. D-2 OH Cleveland public schools 1 1 1 1 Additional staff Increased length of paid service for principals Training Student Outcomes None stated. K-1* NY 7 elementary schools in New York City 1 1 0 1 Additional staff Local funding Stipends for meetings Training Student Outcomes Participating schools had mean gain of 1 percentage point in number of students at or above grade-level, compared to 2.4 percentage points citywide. On the reading test, 8% attained a 5% increase in grade level performance, while 11% did in other mandated schools. In math, 24% met gain standards, compared to 28% in other mandated schools. In other reading test, 39% met goal, compared with 35%. 1 of 7 increased attendance over 3 years. L-1 NY 12 schools in New York City 1 0 0 2 Training Student Outcomes Restructuring efforts created better learning environments for students and resulted in changes in curriculum and teaching strategies. N-1* NY 32 secondary schools in New York City 1 1 0 1 Chapter 1 funding Local funding Technical assistance Training Student Outcomes 34% of schools with 9th graders met the first-year attendance objective. 62% of schools with 10th graders met the first-year attendance objective. 81% of schools met the first-year dropout objective. 41% of schools met the first-year reading objective. 59% of schools met the first-year writing objective. 16% of schools met the first-year mathematics objective. 62% of schools with 9th graders met the first-year credit accumulation objective. 47% of schools with 10th graders met the first-year credit accumulation objective.

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--> Objectives for Students Measurement Instrument Statistical Techniques Statistical Problemsb Specific benchmarks for student achievement Improved attendance Improved graduation rates Student interviews Student data Survey percentages C, D Improved performance Administrator, parent, and staff surveys Survey scores B, C, D None stated None Correlation matrix B, C, D     Averages and standard deviations of questionnaire results   Specific benchmarks for student gains in reading, and math, and attendance Test scores Summary of test results C, D Improved learning SBM committee interviews None A, C, D Program change to meet needs       Change in discipline procedures       Improved attendance Student data Summary of data results C, D Improved retention Student interviews     Improved credit accumulation       Improved achievement      

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-->     Authority Delegateda   Study State Unit of Observation Curriculum Budget Personnel Plan Inputs to SBM P-1 OR 70 schools 1 1 1 1 State funding Technical assistance Student Outcomes Staff members perceived the greatest amount of progress in student achievement, followed by student attitudes and student behaviors. 8% thought there had been "a lot" of improvement in achievement by fall 1988 and 16% by spring 1989; 39% thought there has been a "moderate" amount of improvement in achievement by fall 1988 and 50% by spring 1989; 38% thought there had been "slight" improvement in achievement by fall 1988 and 27% by spring 1989; 15% thought there had been no improvement in achievement by fall 1988, and 7% by spring 1989. P-2 CA 53 schools in LA 1 1 0 1 Regulatory relief Stipends for meetings Training Student Outcomes 30% of certified staff, 41% of classified staff, and 65% of parents felt SBM gave students more input into how the school is run. 71% of parents felt SBM increased students' sense of self-esteem (staff were not asked about this). 26% of certified staff, 39% of classified staff, and 61% of parents felt shared decision making (SDM) gave students more input into how the school is run. 69% of parents felt SDM increased students' sense of self-esteem. S-1 TN 7 schools in Memphis 1 1 1 1 Regulatory relief Technical assistance Training Student Outcomes In 1991/1992, school-based decision making (SBDM) resulted in improved attitudes toward school (49%/22%); student involvement in decision making (32%/39%); improved attendance (40%/36%); improved behavior (40%/36%); and higher expectations for student achievement (77%/9%). 82.8% of principals noted student achievement as an SBDM-related school improvement in 1991; in 1992 no principals noted this outcome. S-2* FL Monroe County school district 1 2- 1 2 Additional staff Consultants Increased pay for principals Local funding State funding Substantial training Student Outcomes Reading: county 3rd grade scores showed no change while state scores improved slightly, equal improvement for 5th grade, greater improvement in 8th grade, and less decline than state in 10th grade. Math: county outperformed state in 5th, 8th, and 10th grades, while 3rd grade showed equal improvement. Writing: county 3rd grade declined while state increased, 5th grade showed same increase, county increased and state declined for 8th grade, and county declined less than state in 10th grade. SAT math scores show relative decline when compared with nation in recent years, and no change in verbal scores. T-1* FL 33 schools in Dade County: 16 restructured schools; 17 comparison schools 1 1 1 2- Training Student Outcomes There is a significant correlation between teacher participation in what to teach, how to teach, subject/grade assignment, and student attendance (r=.43, p8.05). No significant correlations appeared between student achievement and teacher participation in what to teach, how to teach, subject/grade assignment, or teacher participation in decisions on instructional materials. (r refers to the correlation coefficient; p refers to the statistical probability.)

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--> Objectives for Students Measurement Instrument Statistical Techniques Statistical Problemsb Improved learning Staff surveys Means and standard deviations over time Regression analysis for nonachievement outcomes Survey scores B, C, D Improved achievement Staff and parent surveys Survey percentages B, C, D Increased participation       Improved attitudes Staff surveys Survey percentages B, C, D Improved attendance       Improved behavior       Increased collaboration       Improved achievement Student data Test data Specific evaluation instruments Tables on student performance Comparison of SBM schools with non-SBM schools D Improved achievement Student data Principal component analysis D Improved attendance Test data Correlation matrix   Improved behavior   Multivariate analysis of variance Comparison of SBM schools with non-SBM schools  

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-->     Authority Delegateda   Study State Unit of Observation Curriculum Budget Personnel Plan Inputs to SBM W-1 WA State-legislated program;summaries from 34 projects 1 1 0 1 State funding Training Student Outcomes A greater sense of empowerment was reported. W-2* PA 60 elementary schools in Phila.: 40 restructured schools; 20 comparison schools 1 1 1 0 Chapter 1 funding Training Student Outcomes The effect of schoolwide projects on students' reading achievement, as compared to students in schools without schoolwide projects, was as follows: 1st grade, no effect; 2nd grade, positive significant effect; 3rd grade, negative significant effect; 4th grade, positive but not significant effect; 5th grade, positive but not significant effect. W-3 CA Riverside Unified school district 1 1 1 0 Increased principal and teacher involvement Student Outcomes Greater opportunities for individualized instruction were reported. There was a generalized impression of increased test scores. * Document included adequate student achievement indicator(s). a The degree of authority delegated is coded as follows: '0' indicates no authority; '1' indicates partial authority (e.g., decisions subject to board approval); and '2' indicates complete authority (a '2-' indicates virtually complete authority). For full details, see complete study summaries. b Key to coding of statistical problems: A, qualitative type evaluation only; B, survey data only; C, inadequate controls; and D, no random assignment. relationship between the "voices" of teachers with increased authority and their effects on student achievement—but finds no linkage. Monroe County, Florida (South, 1991) SBM was introduced in Monroe County schools in the mid-1970s. By 1979 some evaluation studies had been commissioned to evaluate the effects on process changes in the schools. Great emphasis was put on ongoing data collection and evaluation from the beginning of the discussions on SBM. School planning teams had complete control over developing a strategic plan, substantial control over allocating resources within an overall budget, partial control over personnel (with considerable stress on the importance of performance measures), partial control over curriculum, and complete autonomy over implementation of the curriculum. Teacher and principal empowerment was a major objective. In-

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--> Objectives for Students Measurement Instrument Statistical Techniques Statistical Problemsb Improved achievement (9 schools) Improved self-esteem (1 school) Improved discipline (1 school) Principal progress reports None A, C, D Improved achievement in reading Test scores in reading Regression analysis D More educational opportunities Development of potential Teacher surveys Survey percentages B, C, D creased student achievement was a specific objective, and test data were regarded as the appropriate measurement instrument. The student achievement results are presented more systematically in this study than in the other three. Monroe County student performance was compared with that of Florida students generally and, in the case of scores on the Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT), with the national performance. The major conclusions to be drawn from the statewide data comparing 1985–1986 with 1988–1989 are as follows: (1) reading scores increased slightly more in the state than in Monroe County for third-grade students, showed the same level of increase for fifth-grade students, were less for eighth-grade students, and declined less in Monroe County than in the state for tenth-grade students; (2) writing scores increased for third graders in the state, although in the county they declined; for fifth graders they stayed virtually unchanged for both; scores for county eighth graders increased, while state scores declined; and for tenth graders, county scores declined less than scores for the state overall; (3) in math, changes in the county were about the same for third graders, increased slightly more for fifth graders, and were higher in Monroe County for eighth and tenth graders.

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--> With respect to SAT scores in 1984–1985 and 1988–1989, (1) the national averages for verbal scores declined four points, in Florida declined one point, and in Monroe County went up two points; (2) in math scores, national averages increased one point, in Florida increased four points, and Monroe County declined four points. All in all, comparisons on K-12 statewide testing showed no clear evidence of higher student performance in Monroe County than in the rest of the state. The comparisons of SAT scores suggest that Monroe County students did somewhat better than students elsewhere in the state on the verbal test and somewhat worse on the math test. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (Winfield and Hawkins, 1993) Winfield and Hawkins undertook a longitudinal evaluation of the effects on student achievement of increased collaboration within a school under the auspices of the Center for Research on Effective Schooling for Disadvantaged Students at Johns Hopkins University. Site-based facilitation of collaboration in 40 elementary schools in Philadelphia was the major characteristic of the plan for increased autonomy. Twenty other schools constituted a comparison group. Increased collaboration and empowerment were major objectives of the Philadelphia SBM plan, and surveys of principals indicated some success, largely with respect to selecting basic materials and purchasing instructional hardware. Another major objective was getting Chapter 1-eligible students to make the same average gain in reading scores as other students in the school district. Only for second graders was there empirical evidence that increased collaboration translated into comparably improved reading scores. For first, third, fourth, and fifth graders, no significant effect was found. The study also examined the impact of seven components of the collaborative efforts on reading achievement. In only two out of the seven was a consistent positive effect found—teacher involvement in the deployment of human resources (for all grades except the fourth), and a school's use of district-wide programs (for all grades except the third). Chapter 1 funds, amounting to $900 per pupil, were used to implement the program. This expenditure appears to have teachers given more voice but did not yield consistent improvements in student reading achievement. Conclusions A review of the SBM literature, including a close look at four studies using controls and specific information about student performance under SBM, yields two major conclusions. First, there are overwhelming obstacles in the way of evaluating the impact of SBM on student achievement. There is virtually no empirical or statistical evidence in the literature. SBM programs exhibit many

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--> different designs, and few identify student achievement as a major objective. The focus is on organizational processes, with virtually no attention to how process changes may affect student performance. Second, the handful of studies with some controls and statistical data provide no significant support for the proposition that school-based management will increase student achievement. But, this is not a conclusion to act on. The data are inadequate, statistical controls are largely nonexistent, no repeated effort has been made to classify various types of SBM designs in a uniform way, and the time period may be too short to yield results. What's Next? To merit support, the concept of decentralizing authority in America's public schools needs to be fully evaluated, especially for its effects on student performance. A major impetus behind the current reform movement in education is the evidence of declining student performance. The long-standing pattern in educational evaluation of setting up many objectives, most of which cannot be measured, also applies to our reviews of SBM efforts. School-based management may contribute to a number of good results, but if it does not result in improved educational performance by students, it cannot be judged a success. A large-scale, cross-sectional study or several cross-sectional studies in states that have been experimenting with SBM for some time is needed. Florida, Minnesota, New York, and California are examples. This would eliminate many of the problems of controlling for interstate differences in data, funding, and political organization. An important component of such a study would be the development of a taxonomy of incentive schemes associated with various SBM designs, drawing on principal-agent theory to classify the nature of the ''contracts" among the educational stakeholders. Such a study should focus on educational achievement as a major output measure. There is clearly increased acceptance of this standard. Some of the most recent SBM studies, although they concentrate on implementation processes, analyze SBMs effects on student achievement scores. Reports by the Committee for Economic Development (1994) and by Eric A. Hanushek et al. (1994) emphasize the importance of basic skill performance measures as prime criteria of success. If investments in education decentralization are regarded as means of improving society's human capital, we must set up an adequate measure of the returns. References Brown, D. J. 1987. A Preliminary Inquiry into School-Based Management . Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council. Ottawa, Ontario. Burns, L. T., and J. Howes. 1988. "Handling control to local schools; site-based management sweeps the country." The School Administrator 45(7):8–10.

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--> Clune, W. H., and P. White. 1988. School-Based Management—Institutional Variation, Implementation, and Issues for Further Research. Center for Policy Research in Education, State University of New Jersey, Rutgers. Collins, R. A., and M.K. Hanson. 1991. Summative Evaluation Report: School-Based Management/Shared Decision-Making Project 1987–88 Through 1989–90. Office of Educational Accountability. Dade County Public Schools, Miami, Fla. Consortium on Chicago School Research, Steering Committee. 1993. A View from the Elementary Schools: The State of Reform in Chicago . Consortium on Chicago School Research, Chicago. Dentler, R. A., C. Flowers, and K. Mulvey. 1987. "Decentralization in the Cleveland public schools: an evaluation." Equity & Excellence 23(1–2):37–60. Kelley, T. 1988. Small Change: The Comprehensive School Improvement Program. Educational Priorities Panel, New York, NY. Malen, B., R. T. Ogawa, and J. Kranz. 1990. What Do We Know About School-Based Management? A Case Study of the Literature—A Call for Research . In Choice and Control in American Education, Vol. 2. The Practice of Choice, Decentralization, and School Restructuring, W. Clune and J. Witte, Eds. Philadelphia: The Falmer Press. New York City Board of Education, Office of Research, Evaluation, and Assessment. 1992. Project Achieve. 1990–1991. Parts I and II. Board of Education, Brooklyn. Smith, D. L., T. C. Valesky, and D. D. Horgan. 1991. Impact of school-based decision making on school climate. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Chicago. South, O. 1991. From Compliance to Continuous Improvement—Leading and Managing School-Based Management. Monroe County, Fla. Taylor, D. L., and I. E. Bogotch. 1992. School-level effects of teachers' participation in decision-making. Unpublished paper, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge. Winfield, L., and R. Hawkins. 1993. Longitudinal Effects of Chapter 1 Schoolwide Projects on the Achievement of Disadvantaged Students . Report no. 46. Center for Research on Effective Schooling for Disadvantaged Students, John Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md. Wissler, D. F. 1984. Decentralization of decision-making in Riverside Unified School District: an historical analysis. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of California, Riverside, Ca. Bibliography Beers, D. E. 1984. School based management. Paper presented at the national convention of the National Association of Elementary School Principals, New Orleans. Berman, P., and T. Gjelten. 1984. Improving School Improvement; A Policy Evaluation of the California School Improvement Program Volume 2: Findings. Berman, Weiler Associates, Berkeley, Calif. Burton, N., et al. 1982. School-Based Planning Manual. Part II: Supplementary Materials. Department of Planning, Research, and Evaluation. Seattle Public Schools, Seattle, Washington. Canner, J., et al. 1985. School Improvement Project: 1983–84. Fifth Annual Process Assessment. New York City Board of Education, Office of Educational Assessment. Carr, R. A. 1988. "Second-wave reforms crest at local initiative." The School Administrator 45(7):16–18. Casner-Lotto, J. 1988. "Expanding the teacher's role: Hammond's school improvement process." Phi Delta Kappan 69(5):349–353. Cistone, P. J., J. A. Fernandez, and P. L. Tornillo, Jr. 1989. "School-based management/shared decision making in Dade County (Miami)." Education and Urban Society 21(4):393–402. DeLacy, J. 1992. The Bellevue Evaluation Study (Second Report). Studying the Effects of School Renewal. Institute for Study of Educational Policy, University of Washington, Seattle.

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