Organizational Change in Education

Literature on change in schools was viewed from different perspectives. One perspective views teachers and school personnel as passive innovation consumers. Such perspective employs the Research, Development, and Diffusion (RD&D) model which conceives change as an orderly, planned, and sequenced process beginning with identifying the problem, developing the solution, and implementing it. This model is effective in planning and implementing change at the national level, regional level (e.g. the regional educational laboratories); and the institutional level (e.g., the Educational Resources Informational Center-ERIC). ERIC “is a national network for acquiring, selecting, abstracting, indexing, retrieving, and disseminating information about educational research and resources” .

Changes which are brought about in education by applying the RD&D model affect schools and classroom teachers. Therefore, these changes within schools and classrooms must be focused on teachers who work interdependently and collaboratively with each other to change their behaviors. This type of change is brought about through organizational development (OD) which involves designing changes that would reflect organizational cultures. The OD model, which has its roots in business settings, asserts that schools and school systems must prepare to solve their own educational problems. This model can be used to help schools to become creative, self-renewing, and problem-solving institutions.

Research on organizational development suggests that real change in teachers’ behavior in using educational technology requires awareness of “deep-seated” values and assumptions that underlie the school’s culture (norms, values, traditions), and individual teachers’ behaviors. Therefore, true and lasting changes in teachers’ behavior, in any school setting, must be preceded by acquiring knowledge about the culture of that school because the decisions teachers make to use or not to use educational technologies are dependent on the school structures and values. Similarly, the Concems-Based Adoption Model (CBAM) assumes that in order to facilitate change, one has to assess concerns of those involved in the planning and implementation of change process as full participants and provide appropriate interventions.

The CBAM model has been widely used in education. the CBAM is described as a commonly used model for educational change planning and gives three critical features: (1) long-term commitment personal and organizational change does not occur overnight; (2) participation teachers must be involved in training and decision-making program activities; and (3) collaborative effort of individuals program must develop into collaboration he Configuration Model of Innovation referred to as CLER model asserts that the probability of a change event to occur depends upon four factors.

These are: (1) configurations and configurational relationships between the planners and adopter systems; (2) linkages among and between those involved in the change process; (3) environments surrounding the planner system and the adopter system; and (4) resources available to planners to promote change and for adopters to incorporate change. The configurations may involve individuals, groups, institutions, and cultures. The environment can be supportive, neutral, or inhibitive of the behaviors of those involved in the change.