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31 Problems and Issues in Science-Curriculum Reform and Implementation PAUL DEHART HURD There is nothing more difficult to manage, more dubious to accomplish, or more dangerous to execute than the introduction of a new order of things. [Machiavelli, 1977 (1513)]. This nation is once again demanding a reform of education with attention directed especially at deficiencies in the teaching of science and mathematics (Hurd, 1984, 1985~. The charge implies that young people are being ill prepared for living in an "information age" and for meeting the social and economic demands of the twenty-first century (NAS, 1982; NSB, 1983; National Commission on Excellence in Education, 1983~. In the last 5 years, 1983-1988, over 100 national commission, panel, or committee reports have been published, in addition to dozens of books by informed educators all critical of precollege education in the United States. It should be noted, however, that the vast majority of reports were developed by citizen groups, government agencies, economic organizations, or business or industry, and not by schools or educators. The need for educational reform has been viewed as a national crisis, and immediate action has been demanded. Leadership for the reform was assumed for the most part by politicians, particularly state governors (ECS, Paul DeHart Hurd is professor emeritus of science education at Stanford University. Dr. Hurd, long a leader in science curriculum developed for the schools, is a member of the human biology program under development at Stanford. 291
292 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY 1983; Kirst, 1984), and by business and industrial organizations (CED, 1985~. Currently, a number of private foundations are studying critical aspects of the overall school-reform effort, such as urban educational problems and education of teachers (Carnegie, 1986; Ford Foundation, 1984~. Changes in the subject matter to be taught and its context are being explored by several science-based groups (the National Science Foundation; ALAl\S, 1987; ACS, 1988; N. ASTS,1987~. The various science teachers organizations have been cautious about entering the debate on curriculum reform. A few of the organizations have used ad hoc committees to refine previous statements of science- teaching goals. These organizations have been active in forming networks, alliances, or coalitions among teachers to share ideas about what should be done to improve the condition of science education, but to what ends is not clear. A 1988 study of articles in 12 leading science-education journals-such as The Science Teacher, The Physics Teacher, Journal of Chemical Education, Science Education, and American Biology Teacher-in 1983-1988 found that only 22 of 4,884 feature articles were responses to the concerns represented in the national reports on educational reform. Of the 22 articles, 16 stressed the importance of including technology in science courses and four recommended including scientific-societal issues. None of the science-education journals carried an article that systematically explored the scientific and social issues that underlie demands for a reform of science education (Hurd, unpublished data). The 1980s are not the first time in this century that attempts have been made to redirect the teaching of science. Reform issues arise whenever a perceived economic or social crisis appears on the American scene, such as the shift from an agricultural to an industrial economy or, as is now the case, a shift from a "postindustrial society" to an "information age." Periods after wars always generate concerns about what should be the nature of public education. World War II led to renewed attention on precollege science education with the goal of strengthening the U.S. technical workforce (Steelman, 1947~. Some education reform movements are politically inspired, for example, by the successful launching of Sputnik by the USSR in the 1950s (President's Science Advisory Committee, 1959) and by the Japanese domination of the global economy in the 1980s. Politicians take the stance that schools must be doing something wrong, or the United States would be first or on top of the situation. A persistent theme in the l981)s reform movement is that the United States has lost its competitive edge in world markets and therefore should revise the school science curriculum. Schools are called on to initiate a new social contract with the nation one that redefines standards of excellence and will serve to turn the tide in the country's eroding foreign economic competition. It is frequently suggested in the public press that we should adopt the
SCIENCE-CURRICULUM REFORM AND IMPLEMENTATION 293 science curriculum of our chief competitor, Japan. Japan, however, is in the process of reforming its educational system to ensure that it will not lose its competitive position in the world (Hurd, unpublished manuscript). Bringing about a fundamental change in the science curriculum is a complex process. In fact, it is a process that has yet to be resolved. A major reason for this situation is a tendency in the United States always to deal with problems, rather than first identifying and interpreting the underlying and interacting social, cultural, and scientific developments that project new educational demands. A brief look at some current efforts to foster educational changes will demonstrate why the movement is failing so far. One action has been to use the public press to deliver the worst bashing that schools have ever had to endure. Teachers are portrayed as incompetent, students as ignorant of whatever you may regard as important, school principals as not knowing how to provide leadership, schools as not being administered in a business- like fashion, and students' scores on standardized tests as an indicator of poor teaching. A common means for dealing with these problems is to reduce financial support until schools do better. Another policy has been to legislate change. Within the last 5 years, over 800 laws, mandates, or regulations have been established by states to influence practices in schools. On the one hand, requirements for teacher certification are increased for graduates of teacher-education institutions; on the other hand, there are lower qualifications for any citizen who wishes to teach and has had little or no training. The most common recommendation for educational improvement is for everyone concerned to try harder. This idea is implemented by requiring more of everything: more schoolhours per day and more schooldays per year, more rigorous courses (a euphemism for "rugged"), more testing of both teachers and students, more "time on task" in classes, higher standards for getting into college, more involvement of business and industry and of university faculty in school affairs, more laboratory work in science classes, more use of computers and other electronic technology, more publicity for "good" or effective schools and more "bad" publicity for ineffective schools, more in-service training for teachers and principals, and so on. About the only "less of" recommendation is less opportunity for students to participate in competitive sports or other extracurricular activities if they do not meet certain academic standards. There may be merit in some of these recommendations, but in the aggregate they reinforce the conditions and circumstances that give rise to the quest for educational reform in the first place. What have been the results from these strategies? Teachers are de- moralized, parents disillusioned with schools, and students "turned off" by science; and there is a growing attitude that it is probably better to go back
294 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY to traditional curricula and modes of instruction and learning. Consider- able publicity has been given to '`effective schools," schools that appear to be doing something better than they did in the past. I have searched the published reports on these schools, and I did not find changes in their philosophy of science education, a recognition of the impact of modern science and technology on society, or evidence that student learning was more productive. A reform of high-school biology has been under consideration for nearly a century. At roughly 10-year intervals, a committee is formed with new perspectives on the teaching of biology (Hurd, 1961; Mayer, 1986~. Conferences are convened, resolutions passed, reports published, a few workshops given for teachers at regional or national conventions- and soon all are forgotten. A few years later, the cycle is repeated; but there is no review of the accumulated history that might lead to a new conceptual framework for an education in biology. Compare, for example, the report of the Committee of Ten, Twelve, Fifteen (NEA, 1894) with A Nation at Risk (National Commission on Excellence in Education, 1983~. They are similar in their recommendations. Neither of these reports has as yet stimulated the development of a biology curriculum that recognizes the issues identified by the reformers. And it can be added that none of the other national reports on the improvement of science education published in the 1980s has so far brought about significant change in what is taught in schools. A good deal of the ineffectiveness of the national reports is inherent in the reports. As one reads these reports, one realizes that they tend to be more critical than creative, more speculative than informed, more slogans than solutions, more visible than valid, and more problem-directed than issue-directed. Their positions on education tend to be supported by passionate rhetoric and uncertain statistics. The educational slogans of "quality," "excellence," and "scientific literacy" have been around for more than a century and are still wanting in definition. The central problem is how to introduce into schools a biology curricu- lum that represents the ethos of modern biology, ensures more productive learning by students (Resnick, 1987), considers social changes and cultural shifts, and is in a context that has educational validity for the foreseeable future (Cole and Griffin, 1987~. All biology-reform committees over the last 100 years have failed in attempts to implement a curriculum in which the goals were the proper education of a citizen in the sense of being better in- formed about life and living, more concerned about biosocial problems, and more competent and confident in reaching decisions. This is a much more difficult task than educating scientists and technically trained journeymen to carry out the practice of science. There is a plethora of reports indicating quantitative deficiencies of
SCIENCE-CURRICULUM REFORM AND IMPLEMENTATION 295 science education, but nowhere is there to be found a unifying theory of either science or biology education that has a modicum of consensus (IEA, 1988; Raizen and Jones, 1985; Buccino et al., 1982~. Efforts to bring about a reform of science education that proceed "ahistorically" and "aphilosophically" have no anchors in reality and no flag to follow. The most difficult phase of implementing a reform of science education is changing the prevailing beliefs of teachers, parents, school administrators, and school-board members about what an education in science ought to mean. A lack of such a statement of belief only serves to create more confusion than insight and neutralizes reform efforts. A well-recognized principle in social psychology is that effecting change in an institution requires that all the actors be considered. For schools, this means not only teachers, but parents, students, principals, top ad- ministrators, school-board members, politicians, and college and university faculty members in the sciences and in education. In the science-curriculum projects of the 1950s and 1960s, only the scientists and a few token teachers were involved in developing the curriculum rationale and choice of subject matter. All other teachers were to be trained in various types of institute programs taught by scientists who were not involved in producing the mate- rials (Hurd, 1969~. School administrators, parents, and students alike were left out of the picture. So were the science educators in colleges and uni- versities, with the result that the next generation of science teachers were never trained to implement the new curricula. The same situation occurred in the departments of science in colleges and universities. These depart- ments are responsible for 85% of the requirements for the certification of a teacher, but they did not pattern course requirements in ways that will improve public education in science. A lesson from the science-curriculum improvement projects of the 1950s and 1960s is that $1 billion for teacher in-service programs and nearly $150 million for new instructional materials will not ensure the success of an intended reform. A study by the U. S. General Accounting Office published in 1984 concluded that the institute programs of the 1950s and 1960s for the retraining of science teachers were largely ineffective (GAO, 1984~. Science courses are taught today in the way they were in the 1940s and with the same goals in mind. Serious blocks in implementing a new curriculum are the misconcep- tions that teachers have about the various ways of knowing in the sciences and what is meant by knowledge and wisdom. Using biology as an example, when T. H. Huxley, in 1878, developed a biology course for use in high schools, the prevailing theory of learning was known as formal or mental discipline. The underlying assumption was that the mind had a number of distinct and general powers or faculties, such as memory and observation, and that they could be strengthened and developed by mental exercise. Because of the extensive terminology and taxonomy much of it ideally
296 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY Latinized biology was considered an ideal course for training memory and observation. One needs only to examine a modern textbook in life science or biology to find that the theory of formal discipline still pre- vails in practice. Most textbooks are little more than beautifully illustrated dictionaries. Note also the number of recommendations In the current science-reform movement that stress making science courses more rigorous and academic as a way to improve learning. Throughout the whole history of biology, teacher-made and standardized tests (Murnane and Raizen, 1988) have reinforced the notion that the memorization of a large technical vocabulary is equivalent to understanding biology. There has never been a mechanism or a system developed for chan- neling the research on learning and cognition into the education of biology teachers, the textbooks and tests they use, and instructional procedures for making student learning more productive, in terms of knowing what it means to understand something and how to make intellectual use of it. Now that we have reached a phase in history in which there is a need for all people to be able to renew and extend their knowledge base throughout their entire life span, what is meant by knowing, understanding, and using are major components of a curriculum-implementation program. It has been my purpose here to indicate that there is much more to a viable implementation of a reform in biology education than restructuring institutions and reformulating the curriculum, although both these endeav- ors are essential. As every ecologist knows, there is never an instance in which only one thing happens at a time. We would do well to think in terms of the ecology of educational reform. REFERENCES AAAS (American Association for the Advancement of Science). 1987. What Science is Most Worth Knowing? Washington, D.C.: AAAS. ACS (American Chemical Society). 1988. ChemCom: Chemistry in the Community. Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall/Hunt Pub. Co. Buccino, A., P. Evans, and G. Vessel. 1982. Science and Engineering Education: Data and Information. Washington, D.C.: National Science Foundation. Carnegie (Carnegie Forum on Education and the Economy). 1986. A Nation Prepared: Teachers for the 21st Century. New York: Carnegie Corporation of New York. Cole, M., and P. Griffin. 1987. Contextual Factors in Education, pp. 5~. Madison, Wis.: Wisconsin Center for Educational Research. CED (Committee for Economic Development). 1985. Investing in Our Children. New York: CED. ECS (Education Commission of the States). 1983. Action for Excellence. Denver, Colo.: ECS. Ford Foundation. 1984. City High School: A Recognition of Progress. New York: Ford Foundation. GAO (U.S. General Accounting Office). 1984. New Directions in Federal Programs to Aid Mathematics and Science Teachem. Washington, D.C.: GAO. Hurd, P. D. 1961. Biological Education in American Secondary Schools 1890-1960. Wash- ington, D.C.: American Institute of Biological Sciences.
SCIENCE-CURRICULUM REFORM AND IMPLEMENTATION 297 Hurd, P. D. 1969. New Directions in Teaching Secondary School Science. Chicago: Rand McNally and Co. Hurd, P. D. 1984. Reforming Science Education: The Search for a New Vision. Washington, D.C.: Council for Basic Education. Hurd, P. D. 1985. Science education for a new age: The reform movement. Nat. Assoc. Sec. Sch. Princ. Bull. 69:83-92. IEA (International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement). 1988. Science Achievement in Seventeen Countries: A Preliminary Report. New York: Pergamon Press. Kirst, M. 1984. Who Controls Our Schools? Stanford, Calif.: Stanford Alumni Association. Machiavelli, N. 19M. The Prince. J. B. Atkinson, leans. Indianapolis, Ind.: Bobbs-Merrill Educational Publishing. Mayer, W. V. 1986. Biology education in the United States during the twentieth century. Quart. Rev. Biol. 61:481-507. Murnane, R. J., and S. A. Raizen, Eds. 1988. Improving Indicators of Science and Mathematics Education in Grades K-12, pp. 40-73. Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press. NAS (National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering). 1982. Science and Mathematics in the Schools: Report of a Convocation. Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press. NASTS (National Association for Science, Technology, Society). 1987. Bulletin of Science, Technology and Society. University Park, Pa.: STS Press. National Commission on Excellence in Education. 1983. A Nation At Risk: The Imperative for Educational Reform. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office. NEA (National Education Association). 1894. Report of the Committee of Ten, Twelve, Fifteen. New York: American Book Company. NSB (National Science Board, Commission on Precollege Education in Mathematics, Science and Technology). 1983. Educating Americans for the 21st Century: A Report to the American People and the National Science Board. Washington, D.C.: National Science Foundation. President's Science Advisory Committee. Washington, D.C.: The White House. 1959. Education for the Age of Science. Raizen, S. A., and L. V. Jones, Eds. 1985. Indicators of Precollege Education in Science and Mathematics: A Preliminary Review. Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press. Resnick, L. D. 1987. Education and Learning to Think. Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press. Steelman, J. R. 1947. Manpower for Research. President's Scientific Research Board, Science and Public Policy. Vol. 4. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office.
Changing Practice in High Schools: A Process, Not an Event GENE E. HALL The 30-year period 1958-19% has presented fantastic increases in our understanding in science. A parallel rate of increase can be documented in terms of our understanding of science education. The strategies now used to develop curriculum for the teaching of science in high schools mirror our increased sophistication in science and science education. The occurrence of a conference, such as this one, and the inclusion of topics that in many instances were unknown, or at least little understood, in 1958 are additional indicators of our learning. In addition to a greatly increased body of knowledge, in terms of sci- ence, the importance of teacher education is now recognized. The inclusion of a panel dealing with teacher preparation and, more significantly, asking two panels to deal with institutional barriers and issues of implementation reflect major shifts in understanding, as well as significant increases in research-based knowledge. Each of these has contributed to the develop- ment of new models and strategies. In this paper, I will describe a series of factors from studies that have documented the importance of addressing issues of implementation from the very beginning of the curriculum-development process. For example, Gene E. Hall received a Ph.D. in science education in 1968 from Syracuse University. He sensed for 18 years at the Research and Development Center for Teacher Education at the University of Texas. He is currently dean, College of Education, University of Northern Colorado. His research emphasis is on examination of the change process from the teacher's perspective in schools and colleges. 298
CHANGING PRACTICE IN HIGH SCHOOLS 299 the setting of design specifications for new curricula has direct implications for teacher training and the steps that will need to be taken to enhance the rate and ease of use of the resulting product by teachers in real classrooms. Adding to this discussion will be consideration of the unique characteristics of American high schools. The stereotypical image of high schools is that teachers and the insti- tution are resistant to change. In fact, Ducharme (1982) went as far as to suggest that "high schools will change when dogs learn to sing." Others suggest that high schools have not changed since the introduction of the Carnegie unit near the turn of the century. Clearly, the unique characteris- tics and conditions of high schools must be considered when one is thinking about strategies and ways of updating, enhancing, refining science-teaching practices. DEVELOPMENT VS. IMPLEMENTATION Thirty years ago, there was a singular focus on development activities when it was determined that changes in classroom practice were needed. Design teams were established that would bring together in curriculum- development projects scientists, science educators, learning theorists, and outstanding teachers. The concept of implementation was not addressed. The result was that the new curricula of the 1960s were not introduced in most of the nation's classrooms and use did not continue in most of the classrooms where they were placed. Until the count of nonadoptions soared, there seemed to be an assumption that truth (i.e., the talent in science knowledge), beauty (i.e., attractive materials), and being right (i.e., discovery approach) would automatically result in a widespread rush of regular classroom teachers to the new and dramatically different. When the adoption rates did not increase, attempts to disseminate information about the new curricula became more systematic. At that time, the Educational Resources Information Center (ERIC) was established to handle the dissemination and adoption of new curriculum. It was not until the 1970s that there was a widespread recognition that dissemination did not necessarily lead to trial use and most certainly did not lead to continuing use of new materials. In fact, institutionalization of the many nationally developed curricula has now been well documented to be rare. One outcome of these experiences and early studies (e.g., Rogers and Shoemaker, 1971; Havelock, 1971) was the identification of a set of phases in the "knowledge utilization" process. A major reason for the widespread nonuse of new practice was that nearly all the time, if not all the time, personnel, resources, and policy- maker attention were exhausted in the development phase. We now know that curriculum implementation requires equal time, resources, dollars, and
300 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY personnel. This 1980s shift in perspective is reflected in several curriculum- development agencies, such as the Biological Sciences Curriculum Study (BSCS), and in a few school districts, such as Jefferson County, Colorado, where policies and procedures for development are paralleled by sets of policies and procedures that address implementation. In the case of BSCS and its recent K-6 science curriculum-development project, implementation was considered a part of early curriculum devel- opment in the initial proposal, and experts in implementation were among the first personnel employed for the project. In Jefferson County schools in Colorado, a systematic set of steps have been established for the de- velopment of curriculum, including field-testing. This phase is followed by a multiyear staff-development plan to support implementation across the entire district (Merle and Pratt, 1981~. Some critics and most policy-makers refuse to consider implementa- tion, because its cost can run high. (Others recognize that acknowledging the- implementation phase would be admitting to not being able to fix things completely before the next election.) Unfortunately, we have a well-documented trail of costly curriculum-development activities that have led to no changes in classroom practices. This is especially true at the high-school level. This is not due to weak materials; rather, the failure to have widespread and sustained use of new curriculum is directly related to lack of support for teachers during the implementation phase. We do know some things about change in high schools and effec- tive leverage points. These factors include characteristics of the teacher, phenomena related to the innovation and its implementation, the role of the department head and the principal, and the relationship of external facilitators to implementation at the classroom level. A basic assumption of all the research concepts that are sampled for this paper is that change is a process, not an event. Just as the development of a curriculum entails a process, time, a number of actors, extra resources, and iterations, so does implementation. Becoming a skilled user of a new curriculum will occur only with time. The ease of acquiring competence and confidence in use of a new way can be facilitated if various actors play their roles effectively. Unfortunately, the typical practice seems to entail many instances of activities that not only do not support, but in many cases inhibit or retard successful implementation at the classroom level. STEREOlYPES ABOUT HIGH SCHOOLS In one of our studies in the early 1980s (Hall et al., 1984), pairs of matched high schools were observed through the use of a "parachute drop" research technique. The schools in the sample ranged from inner-city to rural areas in the United States The schools were paired in the sense that
CHANGING PRACTICE IN HIGH SCHOOLS 301 one school was nominated by local experts as being "more successful" with change and innovation, while the second school was considered to be less successful. The research technique entailed having two researchers on site for 2-3 days to observe school activities and interview teachers, the principal, students, secretaries, district-office personnel, and others. The goal of the study was to identify and describe factors and issues related to successful change in high schools. One immediate finding was the identification of a set of myths and stereotypes about high schools. We identified a number of areas where the popular understanding (i.e., folklore) about high schools was in conflict with the realities that were observed by the research team. The direct implication of this study is that curriculum development needs to be based on the real world, rather than on the commonly held myths and stereotypes. The following myths and stereotypes illustrate the important point that the typical American high school is not like what many folks believe. If anything is certain, it is that everyone has an opinion about high schools and what should be done about them. Although each person's assumptions and assertions are somewhat unique, there are several more frequently heard stereotypes and myths that we now seriously question [Hall et al., 1984, p. 59~. Myth 1: High Schools Are Large. The perception of high schools is one that brings with it the expectation, or the assumption, that there are many students. Epically, the image is of high schools of 2,000-3,000 and the extremes of 5,000, 6,000, or even 8,000 students. Interestingly, most high schools are relatively small. There are more high schools that have enrollments under 1,000 than over 1,000. In fact, there is a significant number of high schools (perhaps most) that have enrollments well under 500. In terms of development and use of curricula, the problem should not be considered from the point of view of high schools' being large, but rather in terms of many small high schools that are striving to deliver a comprehensive curriculum with few teachers and students and limited space and resources. Myth 2: Principals Are Too Busy to Lead School-Improvement Projects. Regardless of the size of the school, the principal has a very large array of responsibilities. Yet in many high schools, it has been clearly documented that the principal can be the instructional leader. It is probably easier and certainly safer for them to become consumed in the other tasks and responsibilities of the principalship. Yet some high-school principals do take teaching and learning seriously. They become directly involved in setting a vision and providing support for teaching. In schools that are
302 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY judged as being more successful, it is clear that the principals have been key players. And these principals can be found in inner-city Philadelphia, rural Kansas, and Colorado Springs. These principals shape the context, rather than being shaped by it. Myth 3: Cocumcular and Extracurricular Programs Are Superfluous. It was a consistent observation and clear impression of the researchers in our studies that in schools where there was high academic success there was also extensive student involvement in a wide array of cocurricular and extracurricular programs. The two go together. Unfortunately, there appears to be no research on the role and place of cocurricular programs in the high-school setting. In the development of curricula for schools in the 1990s, it would be wise for the curriculum developers to consider the possible contributions and support that can be derived from the cocurricula. Myth 4: You Can Find Someone Who Knows What Is Going on Inside A High School. One of the surprises was that no one could be turned to as a source of information about all the activity that was occurring in any particular high school. This was true not only of faculty and staff, but of students as well. As we continued our field work, we kept adjusting our sampling procedures to see whether there was a role group that could give a broad-spectrum report about a school's activities. We concluded that there was no person or role group that could be relied on. In one school, a senior tight end on the football team was an amazing source of information about a wide range of activities and social traits in the school. In others, it was the secretary or a special teacher. In many, we concluded that no one, not even the principal, was aware of the total fabric. This lack of overall knowledge may be one reason for the very real isolation that most teachers, as well as students, experience in the typical high school. Math c;. U;oh-~hanl T.~£~h`tr~ 1~ Nf.t Change. 4' ~ - ~. _. at.. ~_..~" There is a widespread belief that high-school teachers are extremely re- sistant to change and unchanging. ~ our surprise, we found that most high- school teachers were interested in change; even more surprising, teachers pointed to changes that were taking place in their schools and classrooms (Rutherford and Murphy, 1985~. Our conclusion was that high-school teachers are interested in improving, but the classroom, the ever-rotating 50-minute x 28-student modules, the greater school context, and external demands inhibit participation in change.
CHANGING PRACTICE IN HIGH SCHOOLS STUDIES OF CHANGE FROM THE TEACHER'S POINT OF VIEW 303 Thirty years ago, the tale was that curriculum development should be "teacherproof." The intent at the time was that the materials and design would be so well done that teachers would use the final product as created. "lbacherproof" took on a different meaning when teachers did not use these curricula. This phenomenon, probably more than any other, led to the emphasis of the 1970s on developing an understanding of implementation. Out of the studies of implementation by my colleagues and me, two developmental dimensions were identified that describe what happens from the teachers' point of view as they become increasingly competent in using educational innovations. These two dimensions are Stages of Concern about the innovation and Levels of Use of the innovation (Hall and Hord, 1987~. Stages of Concern The Stages-of-,Concern dimension addresses the feelings and percep- tions that teachers have as they are introduced to and begin to use an educational innovation. The pioneering research by Fuller (1969) on what she called the "concerns" of teachers about teaching led to a set of studies dealing with the idea that as teachers are involved in change they move through a set of stages of concern about the innovation. The concerns theory states that at the beginning of change teachers will have more intense self concerns about their use of an innovation. In this stage, much thought is given to their feelings of adequacy to use the new way, their potential to be successful in using the innovation, and worries about the possible impact of the innovation on their classroom practices. They also focus on how their supervisors will fudge their use of the innovation (Marsh and Jordan-Marsh, 1985~. As use of the innovation begins, task concerns tend to become more intense. Concerns focus on issues of time, scheduling, logistics, materials, and efficiency in using the innovation. Interestingly, this appears to be a critical time in terms of change success. If these task concerns are not addressed and resolved, the tendency of the teacher is to make changes in the innovation or to abandon use of the innovation. None of us likes to live indefinitely with intense task or self concerns, and we naturally strive to resolve these concerns, even if it means putting the innovation on the shelf. If the task concerns are resolved and there is continued support, then it is possible that teachers will move on to having more intense impact J ~
304 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY concerns. At this time, teachers become concerned about how well their use of the innovation is working, in terms of effects on students, and/or they are concerned about how they can work more effectively with fellow teachers who are using the innovation. In terms of curriculum development and implementation, the stages- of-concern dimension is one way to monitor implementation progress, as well as a framework to guide the development of dissemination strategies and implementation-support strategies. When the concerns of teachers are addressed as they arise, it is clear that implementation success is higher (Hall and Hord, 1987~. Levels of Use A parallel phenomenon has been observed and documented relative to the use of an innovation. Typically, it has been thought that the teacher either uses or does not use the innovation. However, in our studies in the 1970s, it was observed that there were different Levels of Use (Hall et al., 1975~. In terms of what teachers do with an innovation, different levels of use and nonuse could be identified. Changing practice is not an instantaneous move from doing nothing to total implementation. There is graduated iterative development of competence by each teacher individually. At the simplest level, teachers begin at Level 0, Nonuse. They exhibit no behaviors related to the innovation.- They do not read about it or tale about it. There are no artifacts of the innovation present in their classrooms. Interestingly, in our implementation studies we have documented that surprisingly large proportions (e.g., 20%) of the teachers in "treatment groups" were not using the innovation. These individuals can have drastic effects on summative evaluation studies (Hall and Loucks, 1977~. At Level of Use I, Orientation, teachers are inquiring about the in- novation, talking with others, reading, and studying, but have made no commitment to use the innovation. At Level of Use II, Preparation, there is a commitment to use the innovation, but use is not started. Five behavioral profiles were identified relative to being a "user" of an innovation. At Level of Use III, Mechanical Use, teachers are working in a disjointed and relatively inefficient way with the innovation. Their planning is focused on the day-to-day activities, rather than on being able to anticipate and project what the longer-term needs and processes will require. The next level of use that was observed regularly in teachers was IV A, Routine. At this level, teachers have the systems worked out, they know where they are going, and they are not making adaptations in the innovation or their behaviors. They are using it in a way that has equilibrium and continuity.
CHANGING PRACTICE IN HIGH SCHOOLS 305 For curriculum-development projects, there are several important im- plications of the levels-of-use concept. For example, at least 60-70% of the first-time users will be at Level of Use III, Mechanical Use. The longer this phase lasts, the more likely that use of the innovation will be drastically mutated or discontinued. If the curriculum materials and processes are more easily implemented or if needed staff development and coaching are provided, teachers will exhibit mechanical use behavior for a shorter period. Then they are more likely to move to Levels of Use IV-VI, and use of the innovation is more likely to be institutionalized. Another implication is that summative evaluations should not be done while teachers are at the mechanical level of use. When their use is disjointed, teachers are working in ways that are less efficient than what is considered ideal. For summative evaluations, teachers should be at Level of Use IV A, Routine. ADAPTATIONS IN THE INNOVATION A major distinction should be made between characteristics inherent in the innovation (i.e., the process or product that is being implemented) and phenomena associated with the users (i.e., teachers). An important earlier study, which incidentally was done in high-school biology classrooms, was by Gallagher (1967~. In this study, which I believe was the first of its kind, Gallagher documented the day-to-day practices of four teachers that were implementing the BSCS blue version. The major finding was that each of the teachers was exhibiting extremely different behaviors and practices, although all were using the same BSCS version! This study in and of itself should have ended the discussion of "teacherproof"; however, it seems to have taken another 10-15 years for the curriculum developers and evaluators to recognize the importance of "fidelity" as a transforming phenomenon. In some curriculum-development projects, extreme efforts have been taken to prescribe the details of "appropriate" teacher practices and im- plementation requirements. In such cases as DISTAR and ECRI Reading, the developers have gone to great lengths in describing their materials and required teacher training to ensure that all teachers perform in exactly the same manner. At the other extreme, some curriculum developers, such as those of the earlier Elementary Science Study, encouraged teachers and children to "mess about"; teachers interpreted the message to mean that there was no right way. In the prior case, high fidelity is the goal that teachers can resist. In the latter case, evaluating innovation quality and effectiveness is problematic from the outset, since what "use" means is undefined. My point here is not to advocate high or low fidelity. Rather, I am
306 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY pointing out that in developing curriculum, one of the major policy decisions has to do with the degree to which fidelity of use will be expected. This is not simply a philosophical or ideological question. If the developers do not set at least minimal standards of what it means to use the innovation appropriately, it is nearly impossible to blame innovation users for failure to reach goals. If developers insist on high fidelity, implementation supporters should anticipate greater teacher resistance (i.e., higher self-concerns), because teacher autonomy is threatened. Implementation research has made clear that addressing issues of fidelity is important at the time of development. Otherwise, evaluations become problematic and adoption of the innovation becomes increasingly less likely. In this time of accountability, it seems that more, rather than less, description of expectations about classroom practice in relation to use of innovations is needed. THE PRINCIPAL In earlier research, we documented a direct relationship between the intervention behaviors of the principals and teachers' success in imple- mentation. The correlation in our principal-teacher interaction study was 0.76 (Huling et al., 1983~! Other studies in elementary schools (Venezly and Winfield, 1979; Thomas, 1978; Vandenberghe, 1988) and a major lit- erature review (Leithwood and Montgomery, 1982) have documented the elementary-school principal's crucial role. At the high-school level, there have been few studies of implementa- tion. In high schools, the principal is farther removed from the classroom. There are a series of vice principals and department chairs that interface between the principal and teachers. Although the studies are fewer and less detailed, there is agreement that high-school principals are important; they should not be left out of the consideration of factors that can affect optimal success, widespread use, and quality implementation of new curricula. THE DEPARTMENT HEAI) The department head has been a neglected factor in high schools. A surprising number of principals and superintendents are adamant that department heads should be overlooked when it comes to the change process. Others advocate that this role is key to successful implementation of new practices. In the only major study that has been done in relation to the depart- ment head, Hord and Diaz-Ortiz (1987) note: It seems reasonably clear that stipends are not a critical issue for DH's.... What does make a difference is the allocation of time for doing the DH job.
CHANGING PRACTICEIN HIGH SCHOOLS Having time Bee during the duty day to interface with teachers, to observe classroom teaching, to provide feedback to teachers, to assist them in their professional development, and to interface with administrators is an essential requirement. More active department heads do this, and they are provided the time to do it.... School and district administrators and policy makers will need to take these needs for time into account and supply resources accordingly, if they have interest in making the DH role viable for school improvement efforts [Hord and Diaz-Ort~z, 19g7, p. 148~. 307 It is not necessarily the contractual agreement, the official teaching load, or the type of formal training that the department head has had that makes the difference. The actual role of department heads is related to how principals treat their department heads. For example, we have observed a number of settings where department heads, by contract, were not to be involved in teacher evaluation. However, there were schools within these districts where department heads were working very effectively with an evaluation role. This was sanctioned by a principal and at least implicitly agreed to by teachers. In terms of curriculum development, more thought should be given to ways that the department head can be used as a facilitator of imple- mentation. The department head has a support role, even if it is only in communication and the annual allocation of budget. Where conditions permit, department heads can make a major difference in terms of the extent and quality of implementation support. BACK TO THE HIGH SCHOOL Attempts at schoolwide change are rare and extremely difficult to accomplish. One of the larger and more coordinated attempts to do this is that of the Coalition of Essential Schools, led by Ted Sizer. Anyone who is reading its newsletter, Horace (Coalition of Essential Schools, 1988), will learn firsthand of the experiences and feelings of principals, teachers, and Sizer's staff about how difficult it is to encourage and sustain change in high schools. The difficulty, in large part, comes from within. There is a great deal of sameness about high schools across this country. When we were doing our "parachute-drop" study, we were surprised at the similarity in schools, in terms of routine, schedule, roles, organization, etc. Furthermore, it seems as though high-school programs run themselves. We suspect that you could remove one part of the school, and the rest of the school would keep running in its routine ways. In many schools, the other parts would not even notice that something was gone. Alternatively, you could insert a completely new set of players for one part of the school, and the rest of the school would continue as before.
308 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY One consequence is extreme isolation for individual teachers. It ap- pears that many do not feel as though they are truly supported or active members of their departments (or the school). Some attempt to retain an identity through cocurricular and extracurricular activities. Others focus their psychic energies and time on other parts of their lives. Addressing the loneliness and isolation of teachers in high schools may be a key to success in future change efforts. Absence of ways to participate in the larger community may result in forced attachment to the status quo. The often observed lack of teacher interest in students may be related to this isolation. Perhaps some of the work by the Johnson brothers (Johnson and Johnson, 1987) and Slavin (1988) on cooperative learning groups can be applied to high-school teachers. Perhaps a curriculum should be developed that would require teachers to be supported in breaking the monastic role of self-contained classroom teacher. Perhaps the next generation of curricula should be developed not with the image of the self-contained specialists, but with an image of multidisciplinary teams of teachers working cooperatively with large groups of students who are also working cooperatively. EXTERNAL FACILITATORS In terms of curriculum change at the high-school level, one of the major successes of the 1960s was the program of National Science Foundation summer institutes and academic-year institutes. It is unfortunate that there has not been a systematic followup study of the many participants in these institutes. Having been an observer of many of these institutes and a trainer at several, I know firsthand of the subsequent track records and activities of many of the participants. All became more knowledgeable and skilled science teachers. By now, many of the participants have left the classroom to become school, district, and college science educators and administrators. Those who have stayed in the classroom and the younger ones who have joined them have become increasingly out of date. This may explain why sci- ence achievement-test scores seem to be dropping. Perhaps the teachers' knowledge is not as up to date, since the resources for teacher renewal are nowhere near as extensive as they were in the 1960s. Another element of the legacy of those institutes was the strong cadre of university science-education faculty who became active in school-level science teaching. Through their methods courses and in-service workshops, they offered teachers new ideas and advanced training. They too have had limited resources and support for renewal in the last decade. Another external facilitator group is the science consultants in larger districts. In our district-office studies (Hall, 1987), we observed that in
CHANGING PRACTICE IN HIGH SCHOOLS 309 districts where one curriculum area, such as reading, mathematics, or science, was extraordinarily strong, there was likely to be a regionally, if not nationally, recognized curriculum coordinator. Clinical impressions, as well as the limited amount of data that are available, suggest that these external facilitators are a key to the quality and extent of change and implementation success that are found in classrooms in high schools. Yet, today, there are limited training and support for these various external facilitators. If there is going to be widespread implementation of new programs, keys to success will be the skill and availability of external facilitators located in district offices, on university campuses, and with professional associations. The types of training and the role expectations for external facilitators are not congruent with the way they spend their time. Van Wijlick (1987) has documented the daily intervention behaviors of external facilitators in the Netherlands. He observed that external facilitators appear to be more skilled and ready to carry out their role during the dissemination and adoption phases. During the implementation phase, external facilitators became less active, and their interventions did not shift in terms of function or target to take into account the fact that the action should now be focused on teachers. In the dissemination and adoption phases, external facilitators spent more time with the principal. However, in the implementation phase, when teachers were learning to use the innovation, external facilitators did not shift to coaching teachers; they still focused on principals! Thus, the coaching and support for implementation that teachers need (see Joyce and Showers, 1982) were not provided. In the next round of curriculum development, thought needs to be given not only to who the external facilitators will be, but to what their roles should be during different phases of the change process. Furthermore, the Van Wijlick study (1987) suggests that training for the coaching role that is so critical in the implementation phase may need to be provided for external facilitators. They do not appear to be skilled in what their role needs to be during the implementation phase, or for some reason they are not predisposed to perform this role. SUMMARY AND RECOMMENDATIONS There appears to be a natural evolution to the focus that policy-makers give to strategies and approaches to change for curriculum in the United States. In the 1960s, the emphasis was on the development of "teacher- proof" curriculum. In the l970s, the vogue was "mutual adaptation." In the early 1980s, the focus was on the "cottage industry," in which teachers in each school would develop their own curricula.
310 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY We are headed toward a time of joint or collaborative ventures. Co- operative, multidisciplinary, international, and integrated activities are all keys to the development of curriculum for the l990s. This approach is re- flected in the BSCS K-6 elementary-school science program. In this effort, science educators, teachers, publishers, experts in technology, experts in health education, and experts in implementation have joined- together to develop curriculum and to plan from the very beginning for dissemination and implementation support. A major key for achieving implementation success across this coun- try is to include, from the very beginning of discussions of curriculum development, change-process experts. Someone who knows the research, theory, and practical aspects of dissemination, implementation, and insti- tutionalization should be involved from the outset. These individuals can be of great help in designing evaluation procedures. Their expertise will be helpful in anticipating problems that may retard success. Also, by being knowledgeable from the very beginning in the philosophy and intent of the curriculum developers, dissemination and implementation experts can better plan for the marketing activities and strategies to promote wide-scale use of the resulting product. The fidelity issue needs to be addressed at the beginning also. 1b what extent will teachers be encouraged to be creative and adapting? Are there certain elements or components of a program that must be adhered to? Which outcomes need to be emphasized most? A useful distinction is the one between implementation requirements and descriptions of ideal use of an innovation. Specifying that there should be 90 minutes for a laboratory activity is an implementation requirement. Describing what teachers and students should be doing during that 90 minutes addresses the idea of "key elements" and configurations of use (Hall and Loucks, 1981~. Also, it is important that the decisions about fidelity be addressed and arrived at collaboratively. Curriculum developers used to try decrees; in the 1970s, state policy-makers decreed. As we head toward the l990s, it will be important to involve all role groups and to be able to explain to adopting teachers the reasoning for certain curriculum directions. External facilitators are essential to any attempt to have widespread use of new curriculum materials in high schools. The long-term dominance of the textbook market by Modern Biology is a clue that bringing about widespread change in practice will not be easy. Change will require taking into account the contexts of high schools, the role of external facilitators, the characteristics of the innovation, and the needs of teachers and students; the department head may be the key. Change in high schools is a process, not an event. Just as the devel- opment of the curriculum takes time, energy, and resources, so too will
CHANGING PRACTICE IN HIGH SCHOOLS 311 development of the specialized skills and resources that are needed to suc- ceed with implementation. A carefully developed strategic plan (including a marketing plan) will be needed to support and facilitate teachers in a multiyear effort to master new ways. It can be done; however, to do it well will require an effort that takes into account implementation and institutionalization, as well as the many requirements of curriculum development. Since change Is a process, there needs to be time to grow with learning to competence and sophistica- tion. Developing competence and confidence in doing new things requires continuity, stabilibr, personalized coaching, and time. REFERENCES Coalition of Essential Schools. 1988. Horace 4~3~. Ducharme, E. R. 1982. When dogs sing. The Prospect for change in American high schools. J. Teach. Educ. 33:25-29. Fuller, F. F. 1969. Concerns of teachers: A developmental conceptualization. Amer. Educ. Res. J. 6:207-226. Gallagher, J. J. 1967. Teacher variation in concept presentation in BSCS curriculum programs. BSCS Ne~vsl. 30:8-19. Hall, G. E. 1987. The role of district office personnel in facilitating school-based change: Hypotheses and research dilemmas, pp. 163-184. In Research on Internal Change Facilitation in Schools. Leuven (Belgium): ACCO (Academic Publishing Company). Hall, G. E., and S. M. Hord. 1987. Change in Schools: Facilitating the Process. Albany, N.Y.: State University of New York Press. Hall, G. E., and S. F. Loucks. 1977. A developmental model for determining whether the treatment is actually implemented. Amer. Educ. Res. J. 14:263-276. Hall, G. E., and S. F. Loucks. 1981. Program definition and adaptation: Implications for inservice. J. Res. Dev. Educ. 14~2~:4~58. Hall, G. E., S. F. Loucks, W. L. Rutherford, and B. W. Newlove. 1975. Levels of use of the innovation: A framework for analyzing innovation adoption. J. Teach. Educ. 26~1~:52-56. Hall, G. E., S. M. Hord, W. ~ Rutherford, and ~ L. Huling. 1984. Change in high schools: Rolling stones or asleep at the wheel? Educ. Leader. 45:58-62. Havelock, R. G. 1971. Planning for Innovation Through Dissemination and Utilization of Knowledge. Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan, Institute for Social Research. Hord, S. H., and E. M. Diaz-Ortiz. 1987. Beyond the principal: Can the department head supply leadership for change in high schools, pp. 117-154. In Research on Internal Change Facilitation in Schools. Leuven (Belgium): ACCO (Academic Publishing Company). Huling, L. L., G. E. Hall, S. M. Hord, and W. L. Rutherford. 1983. A Multi- dimensional Approach for Assessing Implementation Success. Report No. 3157. Austin, Texas: University of Texas at Austin, Research and Development Center for Teacher Education. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED 250-328) Johnson, D. W., and R. T. Johnson. 1987. Learning Together Alone. 2nd ed. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice Hall. Joyce, B. R., and B. Showers. 1982. The coaching of teaching. Educ. Leader. 40:4-10. Leithwood, K. A., and D. Montgomery. 1982. The role of the elementary school principal in program improvement. Rev. Educ. Res. 52:309-339. Marsh, D. D., and M. Jordan-Ma~h. 1985. Addressing Teachers' Personal Concerns in Staff Development Efforts. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Education Research Association, Chicago.
312 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY Melle, M., and H. Pratt. 1981. Documenting Program Adaptation in a District-wide Implementation Effort: The Three-Year Evolution from Evaluation to an Instruc- tional Improvement Plan. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Los Angeles. Rogers, E. M., and F. F. Shoemaker. 1971. Communication of Innovations: A Cross Cultural Approach. 2nd ed. New York: Free Press. Rutherford, W. L., and S. C. Murphy. 1985. Change in High Schools: Roles and Reactions of Teachers. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Chicago. Slavin, R. E. 1988. Cooperative learning and student achievement. Educ. Leader. 46~2~:31- 33. Thomas, M. A. 1978. A Study of Alternatives in American Education. Vol. II: The Role of the Principal. Santa Monica, Calif.: Rand Corp. Vandenberghe, R. 1988. The principal as maker of a local innovation policy: Linking research to practice. J. Res. Devel. Educ. 22~1~:69-79. Van Wijlick, W. 1987. The activities of internal degree change facilitatom: An analysis of interventions, pp. 99-116. Research on Internal Change Facilitation in Schools. Leuven (Belgium): ACCO (Academic Publishing Company). Venezky, R., and L. Winfield. 1979. Schools That Succeed Beyond Expectations in Teaching Reading. Newark, Del.: University of Delaware.
Change in Schools: A Context for Action DEBORAH MUSCELLA A SYSTEM PERSPECTIVE OF SCHOOLS What propositions about change in schools should we test as we in- troduce science curricula into high schools? There is considerable research regarding change in schools. Researchers have considered the school as a culture, a social ecology, and a system of people who act both individually and collectively (Berman and McLaughlin, 1974; Erickson, 1986; Fullan, 1982; Hall and Hord, 1986; Lortie, 1975; Moos, 1985; Saranson, 1971~. One theme central to this research is that change is both psychological and sociological. Put more simply, for change to occur in schools, someone has to change. In their efforts to change, however, people are influenced by the contexts in which they live and work. Schools are part of a social matrix; the many facets of this matrix influence one another. The community and the school district affect what happens in the school and the classroom, and these environmental in- fluences affect what teachers, principals, and students do. When a new curriculum is introduced into a school, the components of the system will Deborah Muscella is the implementation specialist for the elementa~y-school science curriculum that the Biological Sciences Curriculum Study is developing. She received her Ph.D. from The University of Texas, Austin, where she worked as a research fellow at the Research and Devel- opment Center for Teacher Education. She has conducted research to examine school change and has consulted with teachers and administrator to assist them in their school-improvement efforts. 313
314 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY affect its implementation. A systems perspective of the school is a necessary framework for understanding what is required for curriculum renewal in high-school biology. THE ECOLOGY OF A LEARNING ENVIRONMENT Learning environments are multidimensional. Thus, there is not a simple causal connection between learning and teaching. Rather, a variety of factors promote or inhibit what students learn. There are the curricular materials that come to life through the particular pedagogy that the teacher employs. Knowledge, previous learning experiences, and cultural informa- tion influence the way in which students participate in pedagogy (Erickson, 1986; Ittelson et al., 1976; Lortie, 1975; Muscella, 1987; Novak and Gowin, 1984~. The context of the classroom, which has established rules and norms for the interaction of instruction, affects how teachers and students immerse themselves in a new curriculum (Erickson, 1986; Saranson, 1972~. Schwab (1973) deems these the four commonplaces of the classroom: teachers, students, the curriculum, and the learning environment. They are all parts of an interactive system. When other influences are added to a learning system, the complexity increases. Beyond the classroom is the school organization that has prescribed the ways and means of instruction. Not only is there a rubric for instruction, but in the school organization there are cultural nuances that influence how teachers and students interact with one another and how the staff members work together. These interactions and the framework for the instructional program of the school determine how a school adapts to change. In a school with detailed rules for instruction and behavior, substantial changes in curriculum may be difficult to achieve. We know that, because of their beliefs, some communities do not support the teaching of evolution in high-school biology. What happens in schools is directly related to societal influences. A social-ecological model is one way to explain the complexity of learn- ing environments. This model provides a framework for examining how people shape and are shaped by their environment; a systems model also represents the interactions between persons and their situations (Barker, 1963; Bronfenbrenner, 1979; J. Kelly, 1969; Moos, 1979, 1985; Muscella, 1987; Nystedt, 1983~. Bronfenbrenner (1979) considers the social system as a hierarchy of subsystems that impinge on the life of the individual. He proposes that to study what individuals do and yet ignore the impact of the home, community, and school gives a constricted view of the individual. Moos (1979) isolated four factors-the people, the physical environment, the organization, and the social climate that are the critical elements to
CHANGE IN SCHOOLS: A CONTEXT FOR ACTION 315 consider in environments. Nystedt (1983) uses "the person-situation inter- action" to describe how beliefs influence the actions that individuals take: both actions and beliefs are constrained or expanded by the situations in which people live and work. Thus, in any study of a social environment, we must consider a range of activities and needs that meet diverse functions in an organization (J. Kelly, 1969~. Considering the learning environment as an ecology is vital if we are to capture a holistic perspective of the events that constitute learning. The ecology of the school has several components students, teachers, curriculum, administrators, environment, and higher education and these interact with one another in a variety of ways. Because these components interact, intervening in one part of the system has consequences for other parts of the system. An intervention directed to one component may require interventions in other parts of the system. Consider the path that a particular intervention in the renewal of the biology curriculum in the high school requires. Once the academic community has established guidelines for curricular design and developed prototypes and programs, other interventions in the system are mandatory for implementation. Before teachers can begin to teach the program, they need training in its content and pedagogy. Equally important, the principal, science supervisor, and department head must provide leadership, if the curriculum is to become integral to the school's science program. The lead- ership team also gives attention to adapting and modifying structures in the environment that are necessary to support the curriculum. It is the interac- tion among the four components of the system administrators, teachers, the environment, and higher education that is the critical infrastructure for curriculum renewal in biology education. CHANGE IS SYSTEMIC For any change in the curriculum to be meaningful and lasting, sys- temic changes are required; that is, changes in which all the parts of the system work in concert (Fullan, 1982; Hall and Hord, 1986; Joyce and Showers, 1988~. Let us consider an interdisciplinary science curriculum in biology. What prescriptions are mandatory to ensure that the curriculum is implemented effectively? Key leaders work together to plan, implement, and monitor the curriculum. · Attention to the structure of the environment is central to any implementation strategy. · Teachers alter their beliefs about teaching and learning as a result of their participation in the pedagogy of the curriculum.
316 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY When the school is considered in a systems perspective, needed in- terventions can be identified. Change requires a change agent, a change facilitator, or a leader for change who is pivotal in establishing change as necessary and vital for the system. Because change is a process, the lead- ers of change give time and attention to the various parts of the system and assist and support teachers in their efforts to change. Innovations in any curriculum require changes in the beliefs that teachers hold about the teaching and learning process. For teachers to alter their role perspective, they must understand and internalize the knowledge and values espoused by a particular curriculum. For lasting change to occur, individuals in the various components of a system must lead in the effort. We will consider the enactment of change in the context of Southside High School the idealized ecology in which curriculum renewal comes to life. Change agents adopt a game plan and then proceed to develop strate- gies so that people adopt the innovation (Rogers and Shoemaker, 1971~. Change agents are rarely members of the community for which a particular innovation is targeted. Therefore, one of the first things that a change agent does is to convince people of the need for change. Convincing oth- ers to change requires that the change agent convince the leaders in the community that a particular innovation will benefit the members of that community. The mark of a change agent's success Is when the clients have adopted and are using the innovation and no longer require support or guidance. A facilitator of change, as a member of the community for which the innovation is targeted, takes many actions to ensure that people adopt and use a particular innovation (Hall and Hord, 1986~. In a school setting, the facilitators of change most often the principal and the department head-enlist the support of a small cadre of teachers, and together they act as a team to facilitate change. The role that each person assumes is critical for any change to occur: the principal, as the leader for change, sets the tempo, engenders a vision for full implementation, and gives consistent time and attention to the innovation; the department chair gives the day-to-day attention that any innovation requires; teachers provide technical assistance and moral support to their colleagues. Together the team members take many actions to support their colleagues as they begin to use the innovation. At Southside High School, who are the change agents, and how does the leadership team facilitate change? Five years ago, the biology depart- ment at the local university developed a training program for preparing teachers and administrators to use an interdisciplinary science curriculum. The state science supervisor and a school-district science supervisor at- tended the seminar, and their conviction that the program was vital led them to propose to the district superintendent that the school district adopt it. With the district superintendent, they developed a plan to implement the
CHANGE IN SCHOOLS: A CONTEXT FOR ACTION 317 program over a 5-year period. They formed a troika with the university: together they acted as the change agents. They enlisted key informants from two high schools; these principals and science-department chairs were well regarded by their contemporaries and thus would become a necessary link in establishing support for the curriculum. 1b broaden the support base, a biology teacher and chemistry teacher from each school joined the team. Notice that the change agents have given careful attention to three components of the system higher education, administrators, and teachers. Not only did they acknowledge these components; they understood the interactions among them and involved leaders from each subsystem from the inception of curricular implementation. Each school team then attended the training institute; and when they returned to their school district, the district and state supervisors consulted with each team and assisted them in developing a plan to- implement the program in their school. The supervisors convinced the school teams that staff development would be the cornerstone of their plan for change and that such development was essential during the 3-year implementation phase. These supervisors met the school teams several times during the first year of implementation; by the third year, they had relinquished their role as change agents to the school teams. The change agents in this story had a systems perspective of schools. In their efforts to effect change, they considered several levels of the system. Recall that they first received the approval of the district superintendent. They enlisted the support of leaders the principal, science-department chair, and teachers-people at different levels of the school who became critical in persuading other teachers to adopt the innovation. Finally, to ensure that other levels of the school system-the district and the state influenced the adoption and implementation of the interdisciplinary curriculum, they maintained an active role in implementation. Change Is a Process "Change is a process, not an event," is the signature of research on change (Hall and Hord, 1986~. Researchers who have studied how change occurs in schools and in other environments document that change requires time, because there are many facets to the process (Fullan, 1982; Moos, 1985~. Change is at once a psychological, sociological, and cultural process Sortie, 1975; Moos, 1985; Saranson, 1971~. For any change to take place in a school, people must change. When confronted with the task of implementing a new curriculum, educators must determine how they will use the new program effectively. Their adjustment to adoption and implementation is hierarchical, with attention first to concerns about how a
318 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY new program will affect them personally until eventually teachers consider how the new program influences the learning process (Hall et al., 1984~. Although change is psychological, it takes place in a social context. Teachers extend or retract their efforts to change as they read information from this social context (Lortie, 1975; Moos, 1985; Saranson, 1971~. The local norms of a setting- the tacit rules that guide collegial relationships and interactions between students and teachers affect the commitment to implementation. The success of the new science curriculum at Southside High School was orchestrated by the leaders for change. They targeted their interven- tions at critical points of the environment. Many actions were required on the part of each member of the leadership team. At a faculty meeting, the biology-department head set up an experiment that measured pulse rate with a microcomputer-based laboratory. The teachers then tested their own pulse rates. During the next few months, computers would appear in the workroom, department office, and teachers lounge. The teachers tried out simulations, problem-solving, and graphics programs. Next, the school leaders asked four teachers to volunteer to attend four seminars in which they would learn about technology in the science classroom. It was at this point that the principal arranged to have all the equipment installed in the science laboratory. When members of the leadership team had completed the seminar, they enlisted teachers to design the laboratory that would house the computer stations. In addition, four teachers agreed to consult with a team of three teachers; the department head met with these teachers each month. Figure 1 shows how the various parts of the system are interrelated. Because these elements are nested, what happens in the classroom is affected by the community. And the education that students receive in classrooms eventually influences the larger community. The principal's attention to the systemic aspects of change prompted her to focus on processes inherent in effecting change. She enlisted the support of another change facilitator the department head- to generate an awareness of the technology. She then probed the classroom and school-district levels by enlisting the participation of teachers and using training offered by the district. She expanded the cadre of supporters for the innovation by encouraging teachers to work in teams and establishing a monitoring system through these teams and the department head. There was evidence that the innovation was supported at the district, school, and department levels. BELIEFS ABOUT TEACHING AND LEAVENING Innovative curricula require a change in the perspective that teachers, principals, and department heads have about their roles with their students
CHANGE IN SCHOOLS: A CONTEXT FOR ACTION Community District me, Classroom \ \ \ \ \ \ \ \ \ - - - - \ /:jl - FIGIJRE 1 The components of the learning environment. 319 - - nvironme - and with each other. Consider the models of teaching introduced into schools in the past, such as an inquiry approach to learning (Joyce and Well. 1986: Jovce and Showers. 1988: Schwab. 1973). In this approach, ~ 7 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ the skillful teacher asks questions and directs students to new lines of inquiry. For teachers to change their perspectives on their roles, they must internalize the knowledge and values espoused in the curriculum. As Fullan and Pomfret (1977) state, teachers must have a "deep understanding" of the curriculum. It may well be that an inquiry approach to teaching biology is seldom used in high-school biology classes today because teachers had little opportunity to reconsider their roles as pedagogues. Teachers' changing of their views about what constitutes teaching and learning is not a solitary enterprise. Indeed, for any teacher to change the fundamental way that he or she interacts with students, changes in the organization are required (Lortie, 1975; Saranson, 1971~. Unless the principal and the department head sanction the changes in pedagogy re- quired of the new curricula, it is unlikely that teachers will change. The sanction required is more than verbal approval. Rather, the principal and the department head must take specific actions to support teachers in their change efforts (Hall and Hord, 1986~. These actions include training in the new pedagogy, enabling teachers to work together, and continuing consul- tation that is directed at the innovation (Joyce and Showers, 1988~. Equally important, teachers must have time to experiment with new methods of teaching.
320 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY Several layers of the environmental system ultimately influence what teachers believe about learning environments. When teachers begin to use a new curriculum, they are mechanical, because they are learning how to maneuver among the materials, content, and pedagogy. As they become facile with these new skills, their knowledge about the program increases. As their knowledge grows and the teachers become more reflective about how the pedagogy influences what students learn, teachers begin to recon- sider their roles. Often, if there is support for change in the social matrix of the school, teachers will change their role perspective. As teachers begin to move from a pedagogy that is primarily lecture and discussion into one in which they are facilitators and inquirers, they may change the beliefs that they hold about teaching and learning. It is unlikely that teachers will change their beliefs about learning unless there are structural changes in the school, district, and community environment that will support alterations in the perspectives that teachers have about their roles. The leadership team at Southside High School recognized during their own training in the curriculum that their role as teachers would change substantially. They understood that teachers rarely had training in facilitating groups; instead, their training in pedagogy focused on a lecture-discussion model. They anticipated many problems with students and parents and their other col- leagues, because teachers would not have the necessary skills. The principal addressed their concerns by taking the following actions. She recommended that the leadership team spend the first year in planning and training. She also arranged for the leadership team to visit the school in a nearby com- munity that recently had implemented the curriculum. The principal also arranged training for the teachers in group-process skills through the local university. When teachers began to implement the curriculum, each teaching team met once a week with a member of the leadership team to discuss problems. The department head and the principal arranged staff development as the particular needs of teachers dictated. Even with these strategies to support teachers as they altered their role perspective, several teachers remained uncomfortable with the new pedagogy. It was only through the continued persistence of the department chair and other members of the leadership team that these teachers continued to use the curriculum. The leadership team was encouraged with the implementation of the program, because most teachers had changed their perspectives about their roles as teachers. The principal and the department chair believed that teachers valued the new curriculum because student achievement had improved. Teachers may find it most difficult to change their beliefs because it is not easy to change fundamental perspectives about learning (G. Kelly, 1955~. Argyris and his colleagues (1985) contend that, for people to change the way that they think about a social setting or their role in a work
CHANGE IN SCHOOLS: A CONTEXT FOR ACTION 321 environment, they must learn how to consider alternatives. Most individuals have one system of constructs that they use to understand and take actions in situations- a closed system (Argyris et al., 1985; G. Kelly, 1955; Schon, 1982~. People must adopt an open system, if they are to change the beliefs that prompt actions (Argy~is et al., 1985~. When individuals use an open system, they consider information that is discrepant from their beliefs. They accept that cognitive dissonance is essential for change to occur (Cofer and Appley, 1966~. Because beliefs and the social context are interwoven, constraints in situations often prevent people from changing their minds. A corollary is that, if there is planned change that will require individuals to change their beliefs, the social context must provide support. There is other evidence that suggests that teachers do not change their beliefs or attitudes until they have facility with new curricula (Fullan and Pomfret, 1977; Guskey, 1985~. Thus, the agents, leaders, and facilitators of change must provide many and varied supports in the system, so that teachers experience success. Many teachers at Southside High School altered their perspective about teaching, because the new curriculum was effective with students. The leadership team took many actions to make change happen. Three aspects are central to their interventions: staff development was a continuing part of the change process; teachers worked in teams to plan and learn about aspects of the new curriculum; the district, school, and community were involved in the process of change. Change was considered important, because the school leaders gave much attention to its implementation and invervened in the four major parts of the system. It is unlikely that the science curricula would have become integral to the school if the leaders had not provided a social context that supported change. THE HIGH SCHOOL AS A CONTEXT FOR ACTION Eisner (1988) likens a day in the life of a high-school student to a day on Broadway, in which students visit one theatrical production after another, each with a different cast and director. A student might begin with a discussion of Shakespeare during English class, solve quadratic equations in algebra class, then discuss the War of 1812, then translate a literature passage, and end the day learning about vectors in a physics class. When the day ends, students will have made few, if any, connections among the conceptual themes they encountered in their classes. In fact, because teachers do not typically plan or consult with their colleagues, the classes rarely relate to one another. This is not to say that there are not certain teachers who inspire students, convey important concepts, or evoke new ways of thinking. Rather, the 50-minute cycle that is typical of the instructional program in high schools sets a tempo in the high school
322 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY that prevents connections between the concepts taught in the disciplines, isolates students, and insulates teachers. In this context, it is doubtful that students will see the connections between what they learn in school and the world they call real life, and it is into this context that we attempt to infuse new science curricula. If these curricula are to represent the reforms advocated in the many national reports, then the very context of the high school will be changed (Boyer, 1983; Sizer, 1984~. Consider an interdisciplinary science curriculum that integrates the major ideas of biology, chemistry, earth science, and physics. Consider also that the schedule of the day becomes modular, so that a science class has a 2-hour block of time. Technology will be integral to the science classes, with students using microcomputer-based laboratories, interactive video disks, and computer databases and simulations. The teachers will present new concepts and skills through laboratory experiments, lectures, discussion, and consultations. Implicit in an interdisciplinary science curriculum is the responsibility of leadership teams to monitor and support implementation strategies, of teachers to develop new pedagogical skills and to work closely with their colleagues, and of students to assume an active role in their own learning. For curriculum renewal in biology to become a realibr, leaders from all components of the system must work together throughout all phases of development and implementation. It is critical that the academic commu- nity, business, and industry work with school administrators and teachers in developing the blueprint for curriculum renewal in education. It is equally important that key leaders from the school, district, community, and higher- education arenas remain involved throughout curriculum development and implementation. Curriculum renewal will require many interventions in the various components of the system: · Leaders from state education offices, school districts, and schools must plan, design, and implement the curriculum together. · Leaders in the change process must modify and adapt the environ- mental structures in the school to support the curriculum. · Teachers must assume an active role in implementation by working in teams with their colleagues and members of the school leadership team. If these conditions for change are met, then lasting change in biology curricula is possible. REFERENCES Argyris, C., R. Putman, and D. McLain-Smith. 1985. Action Science: Concepts, Methods, and Skills for Research and Intervention. San Francisoo: Jossey-Bass. Barker, R. G. 1963. The Stream of Behavior. New York: Appleton-Century Crofts.
CHANGE IN SCHOOLS: A CONTEXT FOR ACTION 323 Berman, P., and M. W. McLaughlin. 1974. A Model for Educational Change. Rand Change Agent Study Federal Programs Supporting Educational Change. Vol. I. R158911-HEW. Washington, D.C.: Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. Bayer, E. L. 1983. High School. A Report on Secondary Education in America. New York: Harper & Row Publishers. Bronfenbrenner, U. 1979. The Ecology of Human Development: Experiments by Nature and Design. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press. Cofer, C. N., and M. H. Appley. 1966. Motivation: Theory and Research. New York: John Wiley & Sons. Eisner, E. 1988. The ecology of school improvement. Educ. Leader. 45~5~:24-29. Erickson, F. 1986. Tasks in times: Objects of study in a natural history of teaching, pp. 131-148. In K Zumwalt, Ed. Improving Teaching. Alexandria, Va.: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Fullan, M. 1982. The Meaning of Educational Change. New York: Teachers College Press, Columbia University. Fullan, M., and ~ PomEret. 1977. Researchers curriculum and instruction implementation. Rev. Educ. Res. 4:335-393. Guskey, T. R. 1985. Staff development and teacher change. Educ. Leader. 42~7~:57-60. Hall, G. E., and S. M. Hord. 1986. Change in Schools: Facilitating the Process. Albany, N.Y.: State University of New York Press. Hall, G. E., S. M. Hard, W. L. Rutherford, and L. L. Huling. 1984. Change in high schools: Rolling stones or asleep at the wheel? Educ. Leader. 41~5~:22-29. Ittelson, W. H., L. G. Rivlin, and H. M. Proshansky. 1976. The use of behavioral maps in environmental psychology, pp. 340-351. In H. M. Proshansky, W. H. Ittelson, and L. G. Rivlin, Eds. Environmental Psychology: People and Their Physical Settings. 2nd ed. New York: Halt, Rinehart & Winston. Joyce, B., and B. Showers. 1988. Student Achievement Through Staff Development. New York: Longman. Joyce, B., and M. Well. 1986. Models of Teaching. Englewood Ciffs, NJ.: Prentice-Hall, Inc. Kelly, G. A. 1955. The Psychology of Personal Constructs. Vols. 1 and 2. New York: Norton. Kelly, J. G. 1969. Naturalistic observations in contrasting social environments, pp. 183-199. In E. P. Willems and H. L. Raush, Eds. Naturalistic Viewpoints in Psychological Research. New York: Holt, Rinehard & Winston. Lortie, D. C. 1975. School Teacher: A Sociological Study. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Moos, R. H. 1979. Evaluating Educational Environments. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Moos, R. H. 1985. Learning environments in context: Links between school, work, and family settings, pp. 47-59. In B. Fraser, Ed. The Study of Learning Environments. Salem, Ore.: Assessment Research. Muscella, D. 1987. Uncovering Beliefs about Learning: Multi-method, Multi-trait Research. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, Washington, D.C. Novak, J. D., and D. B. Gowin. 1984. Learning How to Learn. Cambridge, England: Press Syndicate of the University of Cambridge. Nystedt, L. 1983. The situation: A constructivist approach, pp. 93-114. In J. Adams- Webber and J. C. Mancusco, Eds. Applications of Personal Construct Theory. Toronto: Academic Press. Rogers, E. M., and F. F. Shoemaker. 1971. Communication of Innovations: A Cross-Cultural Approach. New York: Free Press. Saranson, S. 1971. The Culture of the School and the Problem of Change. Boston: Allyn & Bacon. Schon, D. A. 1982. The Reflective Practitioner. New York: Basic Books, Inc. Schwab, J. J. 1973. The practical 3: Translation in curriculum. School Rev. 81:501-522. Sizer, T. 1984. Horace's Compromise. New York: Houghton-Mifflin.
34 Creating and Nurturing Curriculum Changes: Some Models that Speak to the Future FRANCIS M. PO l lE;NGER III As we think about the biology curriculum of the schools as it may exist in the last decade of this century and the first of the next, we have to face up to the fact that its quality will depend more on the structure of programs of dissemination and implementation than on the structure and content of materials. American science education is already at a point where, overall, high-school science teaching staffs must be rated as marginal, and there is little prospect of our turning this reality around in the near future. It follows that the real classroom delivery of curriculum to students over the next 20 years will be determined far more by the role that the curriculum disseminator takes than by the creativity of the curriculum designer. Whether the marginal teacher will be able to deliver the program that our students need will ride on whether the disseminator acts only as a persuasive broker of ideas, goes beyond and trains the teacher in the use of the materials, or goes farther still and takes on the role of the mentor-coach, helping the teacher to master both content and pedagogy of the program. On the premise that the fate of America's biology education is tied to Francis M. Pottenger III is professor of education in the College of Education and director of science projects at the Curriculum Research and Development Group of the University of Hawaii. He is director of the Developmental Approaches in Science and Health (DASH) project for grades K-6 and has directed development of Foundational Approaches in Science Teach- ing (FAST), the Hawaii Marine Science Studies (HMSS) project, and numerous other science, health, and social-studies curriculum projects. 324
CREATING AND NURTURING CURRICULUM CHANGES 325 science education generally, the next few pages describe some of the prob- lems that we face in the curricular change process in American education and in science in particular. Then will come a discussion of the experience of the Curriculum Research and Development Group of the University of Hawaii as it has tried to come to grips with problems of long-term curricular planning, development, dissemination, and institutionalization. CURRICULAR CHANGE 1b this point in history, possibly the greatest strengths in American precollege education are its diversity and diffused control. These have given us the flexibility we have needed to provide the laborers, farmers, merchants, engineers, inventors, and statesmen for a vast and growing na- tion. It is this diversity that has provided rich educational experimentation; a shield against total embrace of single philosophical, social, or pedagogic panaceas; and examples of stellar educational success and dismal failure. Change As an End Out of our diversity and faith in the capacity of education to provide social flexibility and growth, we have made the school curriculum carry an ever-increasing load of social responsibility as expressed in mandated courses and requirements. Whenever there is a new social problem or an emerging area of technical advance, it is soon reflected in changes in the curriculum. Over the last 30 years, we have turned curricular change into an artform. Idday, every special-interest group, government agency, publisher, school board member, district specialist, principal, or teacher with a cause, a penchant, or something new to sell has a large list of rationales for undertaking curricular change and a toolkit full of ploys to bring it about. Change in curriculum has taken on the mantle of newness. So intoxicating is newness that change has become a community value, a raison d'6tre, an end in itself. The School's Mechanisms for Change In the face of a host of curricular requirements and options, a school can do one of two things. First, it can have teachers create a curriculum. Without time for design and development, this will normally take the shape of off-the-shelf materials and become a collection of units, fed by an encyclopedic text and an array of supplementary, unconnected modules used to reflect mandated requirements. In the process, mandates are
326 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY honored, special interests are served, flexibility is maintained, and, most important, the claim can be made that curricular change has been effected. Second, the school may turn to a prefabricated curriculum. This is often a necessity, if a new approach to classroom delivery is required, such as the inclusion of laboratory activities. In adopting a new curriculum, special requirements may be satisfied, but newness does not guarantee instant achievement of intended goals or instant facility in new teaching techniques. New content and pedagogic approaches require time to master and personalize, and the slowness and expense of the process tend to create frustration in both teachers and administrators. Inexorably, the prefabricated curriculum gives way to the lure of "newerness," and the cycle of change is set in motion again. Stability in Curriculum In many places, educators have become so enamored of change that they overlook the value of curricular stability. A curriculum that can be maintained for a period of years is usually a curriculum that is delivered with increasing skill, competence, and satisfaction. Quality curriculum delivery is produced out of long refinement. It is much easier and less expensive to build a school program around a stable curriculum than around a curriculum in a state of flux. For the teacher dealing with 150-180 students a day, under the pressures of correcting endless stacks of homework and weekly tests, as well as an extracurricular assignment, curriculum stability makes the job possible. For the administrator, stability in curriculum is the oil that makes the school run smoothly. However, stabilized curricular offerings have problems. Predictably, many teachers become bored with the same routine, and interaction with their classes becomes mechanical and uninspired. Students are quick to note this and respond in kind. In addition to inducing boredom, curriculum that has been in place without modification for a period of years has a high probability of becoming out of date in terms of both content and pedagogy. Crisis, Stability, and Change Forces for stability and change pull the curriculum in opposite direc- tions. Both must operate, if we are to achieve and maintain educational excellence. Commentators tell us that both stabilizing and change factors should be continually weighed and programs should be monitored inter- nally and externally to determine whether modification is warranted. At the school level, mandates from legislative bodies should be carefully ana- lyzed for their connection with the existing curriculum, and, where possible,
CREATING AND NURTURING CURRICULUM CHANGES 327 modification of existing programs should be nondisruptive. The emphasis of curriculum delivery should be on development of ever-increasing quality. Major change in curriculum should be undertaken with equal deliberation. Paining should be given to all parties during the time of implementation of new curricula, and the goal of implementation should be to reach a state of dynamic stability as soon as possible. Politicians choose to move education by declaration of crisis. Educa- tion and its problems seem to gain prominence in the minds of our national political leadership once every 15-20 years, at which time a national crisis is pronounced with great ceremony and the machinery of federal legislation is put into gear to remedy the newly discovered deficiencies. Once this is done, the educational establishment is expected to work hand in hand with new assistance programs generated during this time of focus and, as a good physician would do, go and heal itself. State legislatures operate in like manner. Moved by federal concern, they fall in line, picking up and brokering new federally funded programs and adding their vision of the solution to the crisis through new curriculum guides, graduation tests, and mandated program. Crisis once declared is infectious. Overnight, publishers, entrepreneurs, universities, and professional and special-interest groups gather round with their packaged versions of solutions. The Current Crisis Let us single out science for a closer study of projected response to our latest crisis, which in sum calls for increased quantity and quality of laboratory science and technology education for all students. The change levers of the federal and state governments, special-interest groups, and entrepreneurs are now going into place. But what can we expect of the efforts? What are the forces resisting change? Teachers and Cumcular Change Although the actions of government, boards of education, and admin- istrators are essential in the process of curricular change, it is what happens in the classroom that determines the success of curricular change. The real determinant of success is how well the teacher's needs and problems in delivering the curriculum are understood and accommodated. For the teacher facing a new curriculum with a laboratory component and a new pedagogy of cooperative learning or individualization, there are numerous reasons for resisting change. A primary problem for teachers facing laboratories for the first time is management. How does one get equipment out to 10 working groups,
328 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY instruct them on certain fine points of operation, monitor equipment use, and get the equipment back washed and ready for the next class, all in 50 minutes? How does one have students carry out individual projects of various degrees of complexity while keeping a flow of continuing class work? Generally, how does one anticipate problems and cope when students are expected to be self-directed? Many teachers find laboratory preparations frightening and inconve- nient. One must know how to dilute concentrated sulfuric acid without a thermal explosion, know that hot paraffin is not to be poured down a sink drain, and know that agar slants are to be sterilized before washing. Handling students in small- and large-group discussion in which the flow of questions and answers is driven by open-ended laboratory expe- rience, grading laboratory books that are the reflection of what actually was observed in the laboratory and not what a text says should occur, using performance tests instead of paper-and-pencil tests all can create apprehension and frustrations for the teacher. For teachers not endowed with fix-it, scrounger, or entrepreneurial genes, inadequate facilities and equipment become insurmountable hurdles, and inadequacy is common. Most teachers, when starting up a new laboratory-based curriculum, are frightened of questions they cannot answer. It takes long study to gain a sense of security about new content, and still greater stress is placed on teachers when new content is quantitative, rather than descriptive. Gaining and Its Problems The literature on educational change is clear. The kinds of problems listed above can be overcome only in intensive training. This point is sufficiently well accepted that federal agencies funding development and dissemination of new curriculum, such as the National Science Foundation (NSEi) and the National Diffusion Network (NDN), now require developers to make training available to prospective users. But even here there are problems. There are serious difficulties with present NSF- and NDN-like training practices. llaining made available is not training required. A new pack- age with optional training does not carry the message to administrators and teachers that successful implementation depends on the understanding of content, the inquiry style, the mechanics of the laboratory and field experience, and other subtleties. Teacher training is normally done over vacations, when schools are not in operation. As a nonstandard activity of most schools, training is inconvenient and expensive. Teachers must give up well-deserved vacation time. School boards and administration must find money to coordinate
CREATING AND NURTURING CURRICULUM CHANGES 329 the training, pay personnel and get them to the training site, maintain the site, etc. Staining goes against the basic instincts of the cost-conscious administrator and school board. Even when training is entered into, it is often insufficient in particularity and intensity. First, the training for curriculum change may be generic, dealing with a range of new content, teaching strategies, and laboratory techniques, but never dealing with the details of the curriculum that a teacher will face in the next term. Second, program-specific training may be delivered by a person who has no experience in teaching the curriculum to be used and who is therefore unable to speak to the problems that will have to be confronted in the classroom. Seldom understood and even less often supported is the need for in-service coaching and mentoring after a training workshop is completed. In the best in-service training, only some of the potential problems of a curriculum can be touched on, and it will take several years for a teacher to master sufficiently the delivery of a given new curriculum to feel truly at home with it. In the early days and years of adjusting to a new curriculum, the help, counsel, mediation, and problem-solving of a creative mentor often are the difference between the curriculum's succeeding and failing. Political Forces Frustrating Change In their public zeal to establish curricular requirements to reflect some vision of curricular adequacy and currency and to ensure that those require- ments are met, state legislatures nationwide have been erecting structures that work against their own intent to effect change. Such structures in- clude rigid subject-matter and grade-level syllabi, mandated requirements, and testing. Stipulation of what must be taught reduces the potential for change. This is particularly true when requirements are tied in with paper-and-pencil testing. Administrative Frustration with Change Administrators are held accountable by the public for prudent bud- getary management and the quality of teaching in their schools. For them, new curricula that make different or greater demands on resources, change the content and skill preparation of students, or change the definition of adequacy and excellence for the performance evaluation of teachers can be a nightmare. Changes in textbooks are fairly easy to justify with school boards. Board members know that textbooks wear out and must be replaced. Changing to a laboratory-intensive program from a text-dominated program or from one laboratory program to another presents a very different scope of financial outlay and a very different kind of justification. Resulting
330 HIGH-SCH~L BIOLOGY budgetary requests can be defended only on the grounds that students are gaining a better understanding of science, and such a defense is very often hard to make, particularly when the state testing program does not reflect laboratory experience. ~--o r--o- Every time there is a substantive change in the content and skill expectations of a course, external adjustments must be made. When the direction of the change is toward an inquiry laboratory program, many students who have done well in the past using texts will evidence early frustration and antagonism. The professional skills demanded of a laboratory inquiry teacher are very different from those demanded of a textbook lecture teacher. For the administrator who is looking for the first time at a laboratory in which students are expected to assemble and operate experiments with minimal teacher input, the scene may appear chaotic. Pattern in activity is hard to detect, conversation among partners will range from cooperative and restrained to argumentative and unmodulated, and rates of getting down to task will vary markedly. Rating teachers' performance in such an environment is difficult. Most difficult is the situation in which a teacher rated as excellent as a lecturer is now struggling with a new program. THE CRDG MODEL Despite all the mechanisms for change that have been developed, countervailing forces have tended to reduce educational progress to a mime walk with great apparent movement and little forward progress. The same forces that have stymied us in the past exist today. In science, the problem is exacerbated, because teacher shortages are again bringing into the classroom teachers who are only marginally prepared for their assignment. What, then, can be done? Some possible answers come from the experience of the Curriculum Research and Development Group (CRDG) of the University of Hawaii, which over the last 22 years has been developing a series of techniques that deal with the problems outlined here. CRDG is a semiautonomous unit within the College of Education. It has been mandated to serve the curricular and other educational needs of primary and secondary schools of Hawaii and the Pacific Basin. Its charge is to engage in curriculum research, development, dissemination, and evaluation. Resources Resources of the group include the following: · The University Laboratory School, which acts as the primary test site for new programs. The Laboratory School has some 360 students,
CREATING AND NURTURING CURRICULUM CHANGES 331 K-12, who are selected from the four public-school districts on the island of Oahu to represent the socioeconomic, ethnic, and intellectual mix of students in the state. · A permanent faculty of some 60 persons, augmented by a temporary staff of about equal size hired to complete particular projects. · An annual budget of approximately $2,000,000, with additional funds generated out of grants and contracts from public and private schools in the state and Pacific Basin. · Access to the services of disciplinary faculty members of the uni- versity who act as consultants, overload staff, or joint appointees. Research CRDG has a continuing research function that has three foci: · Screening. New programs in selected curricular areas and grade levels are screened as they appear on the national and international scene and, when found promising, are visited, trial-tested, or otherwise studied. This activity has several outcomes. It may provide information for later curriculum design, provide a basis for advising schools on use, or provide the contacts for a CRDG role in program dissemination. · Exploratory research. New curricular and administrative ideas gen- erated by the staff are constantly being explored. For example, at this time, exploratory research is being done on ways to make all course offerings ac- cessible to heterogeneously grouped classes; to combine the study of physics and physiology; to achieve problem-solving mastery in chemistry with com- puter monitoring and generation of problems; to define more clearly the learning behavior of students in their acquisition of algebra concepts; to service the special learning problems of the Pacific Island students making the transition to Hawaii's schools; to achieve more objective grading of student school performance; and to conceptualize, organize, and provide leadership for a program of prevention for students at risk and others. ~ Program effectiveness. There is continuing research accompanying curricula already in dissemination and those in development. This includes formative evaluation during the early stages of laboratory school and pilot- testing and more classical summative evaluation during field-testing. The University Setting Advantage Though CRDG is product-oriented, there is expectation that consider- able time will be spent in doing research. Research results can be weighed and validated, colleagues can be consulted, whole systems challenged and reconstructed, and ideas explored, often long before there is a general expression of need. Most important, there is an opportunity to explore the frontiers of ideas and a recognition that, of the many ideas explored, only a few will result in products.
332 HIGH-SCH~L BIOLOGY In contrast, efforts to improve curriculum, such as those driven by federal funding, work out of expectations of success within the defined period of the grant. This means that efforts must be very circumscribed and circumspect. Substantive change requires a free atmosphere to think, tinker, and test the atmosphere of the universi~and few school systems can provide such an opportunity. Situated outside the schools of the state, CRDG has been able to take on a range of topics with broad innovative content that could not be un- dertaken within the normal structure of the public or private schools. For example, in science alone, CRDG has conceptualized, designed, developed, tested, and disseminated the 3-year middle-school or intermediate-school integrated science program Foundational Approaches in Science Teaching (FAST); the K-12 Hawaii Nutrition Education (HNE) program; the na- tion's only 1-year high-school laboratory-based oceanography curriculum, the Hawaii Marine Science Studies (HMSS) project; and many others. Development and Trial Procedures of CRDG Targets for development may be identified by CRDG staff or by public or private schools in Hawaii or by schools or educational organizations in the Pacific Basin. When CRDG initiates a project out of the results of its own research, it does so only after consultation with the Hawaii Department of Education, which is its principal client. Once a new project is started, the following general steps are followed: · The project is endowed with a staff, usually under the leadership of a senior faculty member. · A steering committee is recruited and charged. · Design is begun, with the steering committee as a sounding board and the laboratory school as a site for preliminary trial of ideas. · Development proceeds to a full-scale laboratory school version that is tested, revised, and retested until deemed ready for pilot-testing. · Piloting takes place in a selected group of schools with feedback going to revision of the materials. · Field-testing and dissemination with in-service coaching and men- toring follow, along with regular testing and revision. The Dash Model of Development and Dissemination Of the dozen programs now in design and development, the K-6 Developmental Approaches in Science and Health (DASH) program has a structure that potentially offers solutions to some of the problems de- scribed above. Young children, who best understand concrete, immediate
CREATING AND NURTURING CURRICULUM C~4NGES 333 things, need science materials that reflect their home, school, and commu- nity environments. There is also a need to satisfy special state and local curricular requirements. Such needs cannot be accommodated in curricu- lum fabricated from afar. Therefore, a central core of materials is being developed in Hawaii and then pilot-tested, modified, and complemented by the staffs of eight collaborating mainland university schools. If successful, such a model may hold promise for other efforts to adjust prefabricated curricula to local needs. In addition, once developed, these materials will be disseminated and serviced by these same local university schools. The FAST Model of Dissemination CRDG and its science section in particular have had exceptional success in getting programs instituted and retained in schools. A specific example will give insights into our general approach. The FAST project was first pilot-tested in Hawaii in 1970. From the beginning, Hawaii teachers using the program were required to undergo an intensive training workshop, originally 6 weeks and eventually refined to 2 weeks. Teachers are supported by a field coordinator, who provides a variety of followup mentor services and sustains a collegiate community among FAST teachers. After 18 years, the training workshop still takes teachers through all activities of the program while instructing them in classroom management, as well as the program's philosophy and pedagogy. Where originally instructors were developers, they are now practicing teachers selected for their exemplary teaching of FAST and their capacity to communicate with their fellow teachers. Recent estimates indicate that, of the more than 500 Hawaii teachers trained in FAST who are still teaching middle-school science, some 9055 are still using the materials. National Dissemination In 1984, CRDG received a grant from the National Diffusion Net- work (NDN) that enabled it to explore national dissemination of FAST. A marketing system was set up through the university's nonprofit research corporation, and a field representative was recruited to act as sales agent. All parties agreed to the following operational rules: . , _, _ No teacher is to be provided FAST materials until he or she has been trained in a registered FAST workshop. Once trained, a teacher is given a certification number. Orders for materials must be accompanied by the certification number or an agreement for training. The certification number is the property of the teacher. · Gainers must qualify as University of Hawaii instructors, and uni- versity credit is given to workshop participants when desired.
334 HIGH-SCHOOL BIOLOGY · Schools are contracted with to provide an in-service followup con- tact person and continuing contact with the project. · Teacher-training costs for individuals are borne out of costs of the FAST materials starter set. · All training of trainers and the assignment of trainers are under the supervision of CRDG. After 4 years, well over 1,000 FAST teachers have been trained in the continental United States, and they are teaching some 100,000 students this year. The teacher retention rate is about 90%, paralleling the Hawaii experience. The 4-year period has been a time of research for CRDG, and, although the model works in all its service aspects, there is yet question as to whether CRDG curricula less well known than FAST can succeed with the same mechanism of dissemination. Cost It is interesting to look at the developmental cost of FAST to get some notion of what price the state has to pay for tailor-made curriculum service. Over its 22 years of development and dissemination, the project has cost the state approximately $800,000. Over that same period, 200,000 of Hawaii's students have used the program at a cost of $4 per student. On the basis of an average expenditure of $2,400 per year per student, FAST has cost the state about 0.16% of the yearly outlay per student served. CRDG Service In the normal course of school service elsewhere, curricular consul- tation, conceptualizing and theorizing, exploratory research, design and development, and dissemination and mentor-coaching are done by differ- ent entities, if at all. In Hawaii's case, CRDG provides all these services, thus eliminating most of the confusion that comes when there is a multi- plicity of service agencies. The net efficiency of this holistic system is much greater than that of the normal fragmented approach. CONCLUSIONS ANI) RECOMMENDATIONS As one draws conclusions about science-curriculum change in America, six points should be accommodated. First, a great strength of our educa- tional system is its diversity and responsiveness to local need. Second, there is a plethora of institutions and agencies involved in curricular change, and often their methods and motivations for change run at cross purposes and may conflict with the needs of teachers, who are the ultimate institutors of change. Third, to accommodate all the changes required by legislatures
CREATING AND NURTURING CURRICULUM C~4NGES 335 and boards of education, much curriculum has become an unconnected patchwork of pieces without integrating logic. Fourth, although there is emphasis on curricular change, schools generally have no group to turn to that has continuously monitored the process of change and has inten- tionally sought answers to the question, "Where should we go from here?" Fifth, curricular packages have limitations as to how large an educational region they can serve without modifications. Sixth, at the level of class- room implementation, today's teachers are the most poorly prepared to teach science since World War II and have a desperate need for long-term in-service mentoring and coaching, if they are to provide quality science education. In sum, one is forced to the conclusion that a huge task of localizing curriculum and training teachers faces us, if we are to resolve the crisis of the eighties and provide the next great leap in biology education. Out of the CRDG model comes a possible way of building on the strength of diversity and providing consultation, research, planning, lo- calized curricular materials, and teacher training and coaching. ~ pre- serve diversity, it is suggested that a group of state or federally supported university-based educational institutes be created to devise and support new curricula. ~ achieve needed service levels, these institutions should be given six tasks: · Ib monitor and research international and national, as well as local, science in some defined service area. 1b reflect continuously on and explore new curricular directions. provide consultative services to legislatures, boards, and schools. 1b design and modify materials as needed within the service area. · ~ provide in-service training and followup coaching and mentoring for teachers in their service area. · ~ make the materials produced available to other service areas. It has been the CRDG experience that teachers, administrators, and the various parties to the politics of education need external institutions commissioned to work on the spectrum of problems they separately and jointly face. These institutions need to have the independence to create and explore promising new ideas and to think holistically. Any new biology initiative will be well served by such a structure.