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In 1991, the Oregon State Legislature passed the Educational Act for the 21st Century. Since then, schools around the state have reacted in a variety of ways in an attempt to meet or avoid the law's requirements. A survey of schools and focus-group data from 18 Oregon schools were used to examine the policy articulation process from three perspectives: the effectiveness of state mandates in education reform, school-level change in education reform, and the coherence of the two approaches together. Implementation of the early stages of the reform act has taken place during severe budgetary stress in many parts of the state due to a statewide property tax limitation. The research indicated that, in general, educators were positive toward the concepts included in the statewide reform effort. More than 90 percent thought that the law was designed to restructure education and to increase student success. Many believed that the law would be implemented because many students were not being served and fundamental change was needed. Over time, there has been little change in educators' attitudes toward school reform as a state-wide movement. Instead, teachers take a highly functional approach and view school reform in terms of their own buildings and their own needs. (Contains 54 references.) (JPT)

Descriptors: Change Agents, Change Strategies, Educational Change, Educational Policy, Elementary Secondary Education, Public Schools, School Restructuring, State Legislation, State School District Relationship, Teacher Attitudes

Autor: Goldman, Paul; Conley, David T.


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