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On the paradox of lower performing Swedish speaking schools in Finland – An educational leadership perspective Michael Uljens and Johan Korhonen Åbo Akademi,

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Presentation on theme: "On the paradox of lower performing Swedish speaking schools in Finland – An educational leadership perspective Michael Uljens and Johan Korhonen Åbo Akademi,"— Presentation transcript:

1 On the paradox of lower performing Swedish speaking schools in Finland – An educational leadership perspective Michael Uljens and Johan Korhonen Åbo Akademi, Vasa, Finland NERA, March 2012 Copenhagen

2 1.The neo-liberal educational paradigm – school in the accountability era.

3 2. PISA09 Finland 2. PISA09 Finland Reading comprehension – from 546 to 536p No differences between North, East, West or South of Finland (13p, ns.) Differences do exist : Between finnish and swedish schools, 27p. Explained by higher number of bi-lingual students in swedish speaking schools and learning strategies (?) Between swedish sp. regions in Finland, 28p. Between schools (Fi-Swe = 145p, Fi = 272p)! Between individuals (500p, 200-700) Boys and girls – biggest in PISA.

4 3. Regional differences within Svenskfinland (raw data, 28p)

5 Variation within each region large: Metropol Övr.Nyland Åboland Österbotten Åland Språköarna

6 Regional differences eliminated by controlling SCES, exc. for Åland!

7 Problem: Åland achieved better than expected - why? Problem: Åland achieved better than expected - why? ”A school (or student) may achieve better (or worse) than what could be expected with respect to the sociocultural composition of students of the school.” ”To the extent a school (or student) performs better than expected, the school/student is an overachieving school.”

8 Research problem: How do OA-UA schools look like? Method: To operationalize over/under achievement a value was created for every student equal to the discrepancy between their actual score in reading and their expected score based on individual SCES. = unstandardized residuals in a regression analysis with SCES predicting reading scores Data: PISA09 Finland

9 Residual =the distance to the regression line

10 Over-underachieving regions in Swedish speaking parts of Finland (reading compr., SCES controlled)

11 Åland Islands – what happened? Active leadership initiative from the regional level ! Open dialogue, trust, no ranking Regular meetings on developmental issues among principals Time plan was analyzed and reallocated All districts follows same curriculum 26 (!) follow up studies 2003-2012 and they are used Coordination of continuing education Hiring and education of principals renewed Special agreements with principals concerning tasks and responsibility - Principals visit classrooms and discuss with teachers Positive mix with teachers from Finland and Sweden Cooperation with social-, youth-, healthcare/service and homes

12 Exempel på finlandsvenska ”metropoler” Huvudst.reg. (528 p) och Vasa (544 p) Huvudst.reg. (528 p) och Vasa (544 p) ”Inom varje finlandssvensk region finns högre/lägrepresterande kommuner.” Kovariat hem F(1, 1045)=5,77, p<.05 Metropol Vasa

13 Over/underachieving schools (effect of home/SECS controlled, Variation still104p, swe)

14 Over/underachieving schools may be found in: - all swedish speaking regions in Finland - in urban and rural areas - on mainly one- and bilingual areas. But how do they look like? 1.Contextual factors 2.Size and rescources 3.Pedagogical activities 4.Leadership and policy

15 1. Contextual factors School community (size of community: village, small town, town, city).44** Opportunity to choose between school (2, 1, 0 schools in the area) -.14 ns. First language not test language-.19 ns.

16 2. School size and teaching resources Proportion of qualified teachers (as experienced by principals).30* Teacher shortage (number of qualified teachers of total number) -.28* Total school enrollment (school size as number of students).36** Teacher-student ratio (number of students in relation to teachers).38** Extra-curricular activities offered by school.20 ns.

17 3. Pedagogical activities & supportive climate Teacher stimulation of reading activities - as exp. by students/school level -.17 ns Teacher structuring and scaffolding - as exp. by students/school level - teachers explaining, follow up/monitoring, dialogue, responsiveness Teacher caring, attention, support (stud. exp/school level) Schools support for future orientation in life - as exp. by students/school level.06 ns..15 ns..33* Disciplinary climate during lessons (as exp. by students/school level)-.14 ns Teacher behavior - as exp. by principals - Teacher expectations & sensitivity conc. students, teacher resistance to change Student behavior (as exp. by principals) - Student disturbing teaching, teasing/mobbing, drugs, etc.21 ns. -.03 ns.

18 4. Leadership and policy School leadership - as experienced by principals: goal orientation, teacher support, student/class monitoring.11 ns. School responsibility curriculum and assessment School responsibility for resource allocation - e.g. hiring teachers, budget, salaries.16 ns..07 ns. Teacher participation in decision making concerning curriculum, assessment, resources -.02 ns.

19 Over/under achieving - students and schools School level Stud. exp. of schools support for future orientation Teacher caring, attention, support (stud. exp) Disciplinary climate Teacher stimulation of reading activities (stud. exp) Teacher structuring and scaffolding (stud. exp) Over/under achievement.33*.15 ns.-.14 ns.-.17 ns..06 ns. Student level Stud. exp. of schools support for future orientation Teacher caring, attention, support (stud. exp.) Disciplinary climate Teacher stimulation of reading activities Teacher structuring and scaffolding (stud. exp) Over/under achievement.19***.07***.01 ns..18***

20 Educational leadership - a detail Principals in swedish speaking schools experience themselves significantly more active than principals in finnish speaking schools. More: School development based on evaluation Educational support to teachers Classroom visits – follows students work Goal oriented Focused on teachers competence and development Attention to school climate Distribution of responsibility

21 Conclusions 1. Different explanations on various levels of analysis: a. Finnish-Swedish speaking schools (27p) Home and school language different Learning strategies Not educational level of homes b. Regions within swedish parts of Finland (28p) Educational level of homes c. School level (145 p) Structure and resources (choice, school size) Leadership matters – superintendent, principal Teachership

22 II. Explaining variation within a country should not be forgot in the PISA era. III. Focusing on large regions within countries hides actual variation between schools within these regions. IV. Strategy of focusing over/underachieving schools appears educationally fruitful and useful for school developmental work. V. Comparative leadership research!

23 Konklusioner Konklusioner 1. Konstruktivt arbete med ”evaluering för utveckling” Ett demokratiskt skolideal – en skola för alla – har varit vårt framgångskoncept – och som nu erövrar världen. Vi skall inte ge upp det. Bevara den respekt för lärarens professionalitet som präglat den finländska traditionen. Offentlig rangordning blir lätt kontraproduktivt – skampedagogik bör undvikas. 2. Lärar- och ledarprofessionaliteten bör utvecklas En ny syn på lärar- och ledarprofessionalitet som inkluderar skolutvecklingsarbete behöver utvecklas. Förena pedagogisk forskning, skolutveckling och lärar- och ledarskapsfortbildning. Rektorsutbildningen och –fortbildningen genomgås. Lärarutbildningen ökar praktik och forskning – minskar på annan ledd undervisning. Former för stöd / samverkan med skoldirektörer utvecklas.

24 3. Helhetssyn kring samverkan och utvecklingsarbetet Klokt att aktörer med reellt ansvar för verksamheten (universiteten, kommunerna och statliga myndigheter) leder utvecklingsarbetet (lärarutbildning och –fortbildning, forskning, utbildningsadministration, läroplansarbete, utvärdering). Regionala pedagogiska skolutvecklingscentra som samverkar med och stöds av Utbildningsanordnare (kommun), Utbildningsstyrelsen och Universiteten för att arbeta med Utbildning och Undervisning (U5)? Kommunreformen bör medtänka hur skolutvecklingsarbetet skall organiseras.

25 TY : )

26 Over/under achieving - students and schools Student level Approaches to learningJoy readDiversity reading Memori- sation ElaborationControl Over/under achievement.08***.12***.23***.41***.34*** School level Approaches to learningJoy readDiversity reading Memorisa tion ElaborationControl Over/under achievement.03 ns..07 ns..22 ns..48***.35*

27 variableover/under achievement Proportion of qualified teachers.30* School leadership.11 ns. Teacher shortage-.28* Educational resources.01 ns. Extra-curricular activities offered by school.20 ns. Teacher behaviour.21 ns. Student behaviour-.03 ns. School responsibility: resource allocation.07 ns. School responsibility: curriculum and assessment.16 ns. Total school enrollment.36**. Teacher-student ratio.38** Ratio of computers and school size-.24 ns. Proportion of computers connected to the internet-.09 ns. School community.44** Available schooling (competition)-.14 ns. First language not test language-.19 ns.

28 Detta syns i skolvärlden på olika sätt:  Redovisningsskyldighet (Accountability)  Sättet att använda mätresultat är nytt - rangordning  Valfrihet – föräldrars val av närskola  Decentralisering av läroplansarbetet  Profilering och specialisering  Ny indirekt, transnationell styrning  Evaluering styr planering – den som styr evaluering styr.  Ny professionalitet? ”Teaching for testing…”  Ledarskap  Utbildningsexport  Differentiering av skolsystemet inifrån, ”AB Lärande OY”  Privata aktörer träder in på området


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