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Dr. Nith Bunlay and Dr. Wayne E. Wright Royal University of Phnom Penh.

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Presentation on theme: "Dr. Nith Bunlay and Dr. Wayne E. Wright Royal University of Phnom Penh."— Presentation transcript:

1 Dr. Nith Bunlay and Dr. Wayne E. Wright Royal University of Phnom Penh

2  Who are the major participants in the policy process?  Which participants are the most influential?  How can educational leaders identify the major players in their own states and obtain information about them?  How can educational leaders follow educational policy making?

3  We can think of policy making as a play or movie ◦ Individuals actively involved in the policy process are called policy actors ◦ Together they make up the dramatis personae – the cast of characters.

4  Research suggests that the following is the rank order of the most influential policy actors ◦ 1. Individual legislators ◦ 2. Legislature as a whole ◦ 3. Chief state school officer ◦ 4. Education interests groups combined ◦ 5. Teachers’ organizations ◦ 6. Governor and executive staff ◦ 7. Legislative staff ◦ 8. State Board of education ◦ 9. School boards’ associations ◦ 10. Administrators’ associations ◦ 11. Courts ◦ 12. Federal Government ◦ 13. Noneducator groups ◦ 14. Lay groups ◦ 15. Education research organizations Activity: Make a list of the Education Policy Actors in Cambodia. Rank them in order of influence. Compare it with this list.

5  Major government actors ◦ Elected and appointed officials  Non-government actors ◦ Interest groups ◦ Policy planning organizations ◦ Media  Practical suggestions for identifying policy actors and getting information about them.

6  The legislature  Major function is the development and passage of statues, one type of law.  Before developing bills, will hold public hearings, and seek expert opinion  Review existing laws  Continue them  Amend (change) them  Repeal (eliminate) them  Approve the government’s budget  Investigate issues of importance or concern

7  In the United States ◦ Most legislatures have two chambers or “houses”  Senate  Smaller number of representatives  Generally serve longer terms (4-6 years)  House of Representatives  In some states called the Assembly, General Assembly, or House of Delegates  Generally serve shorter terms (2 years) ◦ Each chamber or house has committees that work on specific issues  Ex: Education Committee ◦ A separate committee determines how much money will be budgeted for a new law  Called the Finance Committee, Appropriations Committee, or the Ways and Means Committee ◦ Members of these education and finance committees are major education policy actors ◦ Staff members of the legislatures work behind the scenes, but can also be very important education policy actors

8  Governors ◦ In the U.S. the leader of each state government is called the governor ◦ Tend to less influence on educational policy than legislators and other actors, but still have substantial influence ◦ Governors often act as “issue catalysts” in state policy making.  They select key issues, publicize them in speeches, and leads the public and the legislature to focus on them.  National Governors’ Organization ◦ Organization of the governors of the 50 states ◦ Has its own headquarters in Washington DC ◦ Conducts its own research and lobbies the federal government ◦ Has helped to set national educational policy issues

9  State Boards of Education ◦ A group of 9 to 11 members  In 2/3 of the states, members are appointed by the governor  Most members are not educators ◦ Duties  Developing and/or approving rules and regulations in implementing educational laws enacted by the legislature  Developing certification requirements for K-12 teachers and administrators  Approving and monitoring educational assessment programs, like state tests  Setting minimum high-school graduation requirements  Determining accreditation standards  Hearing appeals from teachers and administrators

10  Each state has a chief state school officer ◦ Similar to the Minister of Education in Cambodia ◦ In 35 states, they are appointed by the State Board of Education  Usually an experienced educator  Likely to work independently from the governor and follow their own educational agenda ◦ In 9 states they are appointed by the Governor  Very likely to follow the governor’s education priorities ◦ In 15 states, they are elected by the people  Usually a politician outside of the education system  Most likely to push their own education agenda, which may not be in agreement with the governor, legislature, or state board of education

11  Each state has its own state department of education ◦ Similar to MOEYS in Cambodia  One of the most important education policy actors in the state  The Chief State School Office is the leader of the department  Duties ◦ Provide the legislature with data and information ◦ Develop the rules and regulations for implementing policies ◦ Providing assistance to schools in implementing policies ◦ Monitor schools to ensure compliance  Policy Influence ◦ While officially only a bureaucratic institution, the Department of Education’s resources are used to push the Chief State School Officers policy agenda  But individuals within the department might oppose and work against the agenda.

12  State Courts  Federal Courts  U.S. Supreme Court  Judges can have significant influence over education policy ◦ Decisions issued in education-related lawsuits often result in new policies that must be acted up by state legislatures and state departments of education  Ex: Brown vs. Board of Education in the 1950s led the eventual desegregation of American Schools. ◦ Made it possible for Black and White students to attend the same schools

13  Local Boards of Education ◦ Each school district has its own board of education ◦ Set local policy within the requirements of state and federal policy  Superintendents ◦ Appointed by the local school board ◦ Is responsible for running the day-to-day operations of the schools ◦ Chief enforcer of local, state, and federal policies within the school district ◦ Typically are active in fighting for changes to education policy and for developing new policies

14  Interest Groups ◦ An association of individuals or organizations that, on the basis of one or more shared concerns, attempt to influence public policy in their favor  Education interest groups include teachers and administrator organizations ◦ National Education Association ◦ American Federation of Teachers ◦ American Association of School Administrators  Interest groups have their own offices, staff, resources, and hire lobbyist to work with and influence the legislature.

15  Noneducation interest groups who try to influence education policy ◦ Business groups ◦ Religious groups ◦ Ethnic groups ◦ Civil Liberties and human rights groups  Policy Planning Organizations ◦ Often called “Think Tanks” ◦ Usually funded by rich individuals, corporations, or foundations ◦ Support the agenda of the funders ◦ Conduct research and issues policy papers ◦ Lobbying efforts to influence the legislature

16  Mass Media ◦ Print media (newspapers, magazines) ◦ Broadcast media (TV, Radio) ◦ Internet  Report on policy issues and the policy making process  Influence policy issues and the policy making process ◦ Help raise education problems to become policy issues by raising awareness and reporting on them ◦ Often reflect the policy agenda of the paper’s editor and/or funding source ◦ Publish opinion pieces written by the editors, columnists, policy actors, or members of the public ◦ Often take official positions related to policy debates ◦ Often endorse specific candidates in elections

17  In order to interact with and influence policy actors, you first must find out who they are, what they do, and what issues they care about.  Sources for information ◦ Websites of government organizations ◦ Websites of non-government education organizations ◦ Official telephone directories ◦ Newspaper articles about policy issues ◦ Recent policy reports

18 1. Look at your list of the major policy actors in Cambodia from the opening activity. Discuss why you ranked these the way you did. 2. In Cambodia one major policy actor is the Education NGOs. Describe their role and influence in Cambodia on the education policy process? 3. What are the best resources for getting information about individual education policy actors in Cambodia?

19  Break into 3 small groups  As a group, read and discuss the article on p. 164 in the textbook. ◦ Case Study: “Stop the Bullies!” The Politics of Accountability  On a sheet of paper ◦ Write Policy Discussion Circle #3 ◦ Write down all the members of the group ◦ Discuss and write down the answers for questions 1 -3. ◦ Give the sheet of paper to the instructor at the end of the class  Report to the whole group ◦ Each group will present their answers to one of the questions.


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