Group Title: problems of implementing Florida's teacher education centers
Title: The Problems of implementing Florida's teacher education centers
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 Material Information
Title: The Problems of implementing Florida's teacher education centers anthropological perspectives on organizational change in education
Alternate Title: Florida's teacher education centers
Physical Description: viii, 144 leaves : map ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Van Fleet, Alanson Alva, 1947-
Publication Date: 1977
Copyright Date: 1977
Subject: Teachers -- Training of -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Educational innovations -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Foundations of Education thesis Ph. D   ( lcsh )
Dissertations, Academic -- Foundations of Education -- UF   ( lcsh )
Genre: bibliography   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Thesis: Thesis--University of Florida.
Bibliography: Bibliography: leaves 135-142.
Statement of Responsibility: by Alanson Alva Van Fleet.
General Note: Typescript.
General Note: Vita.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00098287
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: alephbibnum - 000210050
oclc - 04168563
notis - AAX6869


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Many thanks are due to Florida's educators who gave
of their time and energy to help this study. Dr. Jay P. Lutz

of the Florida Department of Education made a special contri-

bution to the study, as did Dr. Suzanne Kinzer, University

of Florida. Dr. William H. Drummond played an important role

in starting the research project of which this dissertation

is one part. Moreover, his leadership provided an education

that goes beyond the boundaries of these pages.

Special appreciation is due to my major professor and

dissertation committee. Drs. Robert Curran, Hal Lewis,

Elizabeth Eddy, and Solon Kimball presented the author with

a unique opportunity to pursue advanced study in both

anthropology and education. My committee members, Drs. Robert

Curran, Arthur Newman, Hal Lewis, and Carol Taylor lent the

care and attention needed to see this work through to its

completion. My committee chairman, Dr. Robert Curran has

deeply affected my thinking and work by his concern with

social philosophy, as well as sociology.

A very special debt is owed to my wife, Jane Ann, who

not only typed the manuscript and helped edit this work

in draft form, but also offered the necessary support and

encouragement to simply get it done. The final typing was

done by the very able Margie Morales.

In the study that follows, the good parts owe much

to the help of others, the less satisfactory parts are the

responsibility of the author alone.


ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ........................... ............... ii

LIST OF TABLES .............. ........................... vi

LIST OF FIGURES ....................................... vii

ABSTRACT ..............................................viii

CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION............................. 1

1974-1975................................ 5

The Enabling Legislation................. 5
The Original Ten Centers.................. 9
A Process Not a Place.................... 10
Center Goals.............................. 14
Center Governance........................ 16
Center Funding............................ 18
Center Programs.......................... 21
Summary .................................... 27


Preexisting Structures................... 29
Common Problems.......................... 33
Planning for Change ................... 34
Problems of Governance................ 39
Problems of Funding................... 44
Problems of Program Development....... 46
Problems of Support for Center
Activities......................... 49
Summary .................................... 52


Preliminary Meetings..................... 55
September Meeting......................... 59
October Meeting.......................... 60
November Meeting......................... 63

December 'Meeting............................. 65
January Meeting.................................... 66
February !eeting.................................. 68
March Meeting................................. 70
April Meeting ................................ 71
May Meeting................................. .. 72
June Meeting................................. 75
Summary.................................. .. 76


An Overview of the Research.................. 77
Malinowski's Functional Theory of
Institutions ............................... 83


Internal and External Factors................ 90
Starting a Center: New Groups and
Expressions of Power....................... 91
Distribution of Authority: State and
Local Interests........................... 93
Economics of Teacher Centers: State
and Local Interests...................... 96
Impact on Program Development................ 99
Summary .............................. .... ... 101


The Teacher Center Movement in
American Education.......................103
The Advent of Centers in Relation to
Group Interests............................ 107
The Advent of Teacher Centers in
Relation to Corresponding Changes in
Other Institutions .........................115
Summary ....................................... 120




BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ......................................... 143


Table I Florida's Teacher Education Centers
(1974-75)................................ 11

Table II Center Expenditures
(9/74 through 1/75)....................... 21

Table III Preservice and Inservice Teachers
Served (9/74 through 3/75)............... 23


Figure I Florida's Teacher Education Centers
(1974-75).................................. 12

Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate
Council of the University of Florida
in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree
of Doctor of Philosophy



Alanson Alva Van Fleet

August, 1977

Chairman: Robert L. Curran
Major Department: Foundations of Education

This study identifies and interprets the problems of

implementation, or organizational change, experienced by most

of the original ten teacher education centers implemented in

Florida during the 1974-75 school year. It is organized into

two major parts: the first provides general descriptive data

about Florida's teacher education centers and their problems

of implementation. The other section offers an interpretive

framework for understanding organizational change and applies

it to the problems of center implementation in Florida and

to the advent of teacher centers nationally.

In this study problems of implementation are considered

to be those circumstances, conditions or activities that

hindered the accomplishment of the organizational changes

prescribed by the letter and spirit of the legislation that

established Florida's teacher education centers. The changes


were prescribed to establish a new system for teacher

education in Florida in which school districts, colleges

of education, and classroom teachers would work cooperatively

in identifying teacher training needs, developing programs

responsive to those needs, and evaluating :he effectiveness

of such programs.

The state's teacher education centers -ere not established

as independent agencies but were grafted onto host school

districts in conjunction with cooperating universities and

teacher organizations. The preexisting structures and habits

governing inservice teacher education and the institutional

interests of participating agencies greatly affected center

implementation, often mitigating against the realization of

prescribed organizational changes set forth by the enabling


A review of research on organizational change reveals

the lackof a theoretical framework for research, especially

a framework that interrelates the influence of internal and

external factors as they affect organizational change.

Malinowski's functional theory of institutions is offered as

a possible framework. Its usefulness is explored by applying

it to the problems of center implementation in Florida and

to the advent of teacher centers in American education.


Florida was the first state in this country to

establish a state-wide system of teacher education centers,

based on state legislation and supported by public funds.

The start of the adventure was the passage of the Teacher

Education Center Act of 1973 by the state legislature. The

Act declared a new state policy for teacher education; one

that emphasized shared responsibilities, collaboration, and

partnership among groups and organizations involved in

teacher education. The state's teacher centers were called

upon to embody the new policy and act as a means for its


The purpose of this dissertation is to identify and

interpret the problems of implementation, or organizational

change, experienced by most of the original ten centers

implemented in the 1974-75 school year. To achieve this pur-

pose the author feels it necessary to cover the following


a description of Florida's teacher education centers,
including the charges of the enabling legislation and
general characteristics of the state's centers,

an overview of the problems of implementation, or
organizational change, experienced by most centers
during the first year of implementation,

a case study of the problems experienced in one center,
through the description of the issues that appeared
before the center's council,

a review of the research on organizational change in
education to provide an interpretive framework for a
further understanding of the problems of implementation,

the application of an interpretive framework to the
problems of organizational change faced during the
implementation of Florida's teacher centers,

and the application of the framework to the advent of
teacher centers in American education to further check
on its usefulness in aiding the student of organizational

Accordingly, the dissertation is divided into two major parts.

The first, comprised of Chapters Two, Three, and Four, provides

general descriptive data about Florida's teacher centers and

the common problems they faced during implementation. The

second, comprised of Chapters Five, Six, and Seven, offers

an interpretive framework for understanding organizational

change, and applies it both to the problems of center imple-

mentation in Florida and to the advent of teacher centers

nationally. Chapter Eight summarizes the findings of the

dissertation and offers suggestions for further educational

research on this topic.

This study is descriptive only to the extent that it

provides the reader with a general portrait of Florida's

teacher centers and adequately identifies their common

problems of implementation. It is not a detailed ethnographic


account of teacher center activities, as can be found in

the work of Feiman (1975). It is not a history of the state's

centers, nor is it concerned with ascertaining the extent to

which teacher centers have been implemented successfully in

Florida. Rather this work is concerned primarily with

identifying and understanding the problems of implementation

common to Florida's centers during their first year of

operation, school year 1974-75.

The problems addressed here are problems that were faced

by most, if not all, of Florida's centers. The field research

upon which this work was based was designed specifically to

gather data and derive common problems of organizational


In this study problems of implementation were considered

to be those circumstances, conditions, or activities that

hindered the accomplishment of organizational changes pre-

scribed by the letter and spirit of the enabling legislation

for Florida's teacher centers. The prescribed organizational

changes were new sets of activities and social relations

called for by the enabling legislation. They were prescribed

in order to establish a new system for teacher education in

which school districts, colleges of education, and classroom

teachers would work cooperatively to identify training needs,

* The development of this study and the methods used are
described in the Appendix.


develop programs responsive to those needs, and evaluate

the effectiveness of such programs. The required extent of

shared responsibility and collaborative decision-making

was unprecedented in the state.


As the 1973 legislative session in Florida drew to

a close in late June, the Teacher Education Center Act was

passed in a flurry of education legislation. The Act

(Florida Statutes 231.600-610) set forth a new state

policy for teacher education, one that called for more

cooperation among groups involved in teacher training --

college faculty, school district administrators, and

classroom teachers. To provide a mechanism for this

cooperation, the Legislature established a state-wide

system of teacher education centers. In this sense,

teacher education centers were established as a means, or

a process, to achieve a desired consequence.

This chapter describes the legislation that provided

for the state's centers and their basic organizational

characteristics, namely their goals, their governance,

their finance, and their programs.

The Enabling Legislation

The intent of the enabling legislation, as set forth

in the first section of the Act, is clearly to establish

a "partnership" among the groups involved in teacher

education. Moreover, the Act recognizes the importance of

teachers in improving the quality of schooling and the

necessity of teacher involvement in bringing about educa-

tional change. The following passages illustrate the intent

of the enabling legislation. They are exerpted from Fla.

Stat. 231.601.

The most important influence the school can contribute
to the learning of any student is the attitudes, skills,
knowledge and understanding of the teacher.

If any change is desired in the nature or quality of
the educational programs of the schools it will come
about only if teachers play a major role in the change.

Teachers can best assist with improving education when
they directly and personally participate in identifying
needed changes and in designing, developing, implement-
ing, and evaluating solutions to meet the identified

It is commonly accepted that teacher education is
best carried out through the collaborative efforts of
the colleges and universities, the schools, and the

In order to facilitate collaboration between colleges
and universities and school districts, insure appro-
priate involvement and participation of teachers, and
establish procedures for joint utilization of resources
available for preservice and inservice teachers, the
state board of education shall issue regulations
providing for the establishment of teacher education
centers in school districts.

The enabling legislation also specified the basic

characteristics for centers. Each teacher education center

was to be planned, financed, and staffed jointly by one

or more school districts and by one or more colleges or

universities. Community colleges could participate in

appropriate phases of teacher education center activities

(Fla. Stat. R 231.603). Each center was to be governed by

a center council including representatives of participating

school districts, classroom teachers, universities, and

community agencies (Fla. Stat. 231.606). Each center

was to be funded jointly by participating school districts

and universities, with additional funds coming from the

Florida Department of Education and other appropriate sources

(Fla. Stat. R 231.609).

In Section 231.604 the Act established the State

Council for Teacher Education Centers to assist the

Florida Department of Education in developing a state

system of centers. The State Council was to assume the

following responsibilities: (1) recommend feasible locations

for teacher education centers, based on proposals submitted

by school districts and universities; (2) recommend guide-

lines for the expenditure of funds for the centers; (3)

evaluate the progress of the centers; and (4) perform other

duties required by the purposes of the Act. Members of the

State Council were appointed by the Governor, and included

representatives from the State Department of Education,

school districts (board members and administrative staff),

classroom teachers, and university teacher educators. The

State Council, operating through the Florida Department of

Education, initiated requests for proposals to start

teacher centers in local school districts, selected which

proposals were to receive funds, and exercised a general

control over the development of the state's teacher

education centers.

Even though the Teacher Center Education Act was

passed in 1973, no centers were established the following

school year. Instead, the 1973-74 school year was used as

a planning year by the State Council for Teacher Education

Centers. After their deliberations which included examining

teacher centers in other states, consultation with educa-

tional groups in Florida, and a detailed examination of

the enabling legislation, the Council recommended some

amendments to the original Act. These amendments were

adopted during the 1974 legislative session.

Among the 1974 additions was Section 231.611 which

described the procedure to be used in approving centers.

1. The department of education shall provide each
school district and each university full informa-
tion about teacher education centers and a copy of
all requirements for establishing and operating

2. Each district and university wishing to jointly
establish a center in 1974-75 shall submit a brief
proposal to the department of education.

3. The State Council on Teacher Education Centers
shall review all proposals and recommend to the
department of education the ten locations which
in the opinion of the Council will best meet the
expectations of the Teacher Education Center Act;
provided, however, that consideration shall be
given to geographic location so as to have some
center development in several regions of the

4. The department shall notify all school districts
of the locations selected and request those
selected to develop a detailed plan of operation
for approval by the department of education in
accordance with this Act and regulation of the
State Board of Education.

5. The Department of Education is authorized to use
up to $20,000 per teacher education center from the
educational research and development program to
assist with start up and other developmental costs
when such development is consistent with the mission
of the research and development program.

The newly added section also specified that the Department

of Education was authorized to approve up to ten centers

for the 1974-75 school year, and that state-wide implementa-

tion should be accomplished by June 30, 1979.

The Original Ten Centers

Pursuant to the Teacher Education Center Act, ten

centers were approved by the State Council for operation

beginning with the 1974-75 school year. Of the original

ten centers, seven served single school districts and three

served multi-district areas. Together the ten centers

served twenty-four of Florida's sixty-seven county school

districts, along with about 20% of the state's 76,366

teachers for that year. Table I lists the ten centers,

their host school districts, cooperating universities,

community colleges, and the number of teachers served by each

center. Figure I shows a map of Florida indicating

the county school district which started teacher education

centers in 1974-75.

A Process Not a Place

The term "center" is a bit misleading as applied to

the state's teacher education centers. Florida's teacher

education centers are not buildings or special training

sites. Instead they are administrative and coordinating

agencies that plan, deliver, and evaluate teacher education

activities within school districts. Centers provide a

means for developing teacher training activities and

offering them to teachers. In essence, centers in Florida

are more of a process than a place.

There is not much to see if you were to visit one of

Florida's teacher education centers during a normal working

day. You would probably find yourself in the administrative

offices of a school district, where one door would bear the

name "Teacher Education Center." You would first meet a

secretary with a stack of messages and a mass of paper work

piled on the desk. If the director of the center is not

attending one of his many meetings, he or she would be busy

Teacher Education
Center District


Cooperating Cooperating Conmanity
University College

Numhfr of
Teachers Served

Alachua County

Bay County

Leon County

Okaloosa County

Osceola County

Polk County

Sarasota County

Mideastern (St. Lucie,
Indian River, and Martin

PAEC* (Calhoun, Franklin,
Gulf, Holmes, Jackson,
Walton, Liberty, and
Washington Counties)

Southwest (Collier,
Charlotte, DeSoto, Glades,
Hendry and Lee Counties)

*Panhandle Area Educational

University of Florida

University of West Florida

Florida A&M University
Florida State University

University of West Florida

Florida Technological

University of South Florida

University of South Florida

Florida Atlantic University

University of West Florida
Florida A&M University
Florida State University

Florida Atlantic University
Florida International
University of South Florida


Gulf Coast




Gulf Coast












I _





with administrative tasks. You would not find a group of

teachers at the center engaged in training activities.

Rather you would likely find some printed training materials,

some surveys of teachers to determine their training needs,

contract forms for consultants who offer programs, and

schedules for future training programs.

The administrative work of the center is done by the

center director and the staff (if there is one). It is

their offices that you see when you visit a center. The

director and staff administer center policy and programs

adopted by the center council and approved by the host

school district. The director is a school district employee,

and is usually appointed by the district on the recommenda-

tion of the council. The director and staff also serve as

information sources for the council, and in that capacity

work as liaison with the local school district and the

cooperating teacher training institution.

In order to get to the heart of a center, an observer

would need to witness a series of council meetings in which

teachers, college faculty, and school district administra-

tors discuss what training programs should be offered and

how they should be given. The observer should see how

teacher training needs are identified by the center, how

center programs use college faculty and other trainers to

respond to expressed needs, and how programs are evaluated

to check on their value in meeting those needs. Likewise,

the observer should seek to determine center goals and how

center activities are funded. Finally, the observer would

have an incomplete picture if training programs were missed,

although it would be difficult to witness all of them. Not

being a specific training site, the center's training

activities are carried out in classrooms, auditoriums, field

settings, virtually anywhere within the district that

teachers can gather.

In the sections of this chapter that follow, Florida's

centers are described in terms of center goals, governance,

funding and programs. These are basic characteristics of the

cooperative process designed to be fundamental to center


Center Goals

In order to start a center, universities and school

districts had to jointly submit a proposal that stated

goals for center operation and activities designed to reach

them. An examination of those goals provides an indication

of what types of organizational change that centers sought

to accomplish. A content analysis of those goals revealed

three major themes common to most centers. Not surprisingly,

local goals reflected the intentions of the enabling legis-

lation. The major themes included the following: (1) to

improve and strengthen cooperative arrangements among

colleges of education, school districts and classroom

teachers in conducting teacher education and staff devel-

opment programs; (2) to assess inservice training needs

of teachers and develop training programs that are respon-

sive to those needs; and (3) to promote a career long

approach to teacher education.

Some minor themes appeared through content analysis,

which were shared by several centers but not most centers.

They included moving teacher education toward a competency-

based approach, developing systematic methods for the

evaluation of teacher education programs, and creating

alternative ways for professional development.

The goal statements of the Alachua County Teacher

Education Center provide an illustration. The goals of the

center are as follows:

1. To improve and strengthen the cooperative relation-
ship between university and public school faculty
members and administration with respect to preservice
and inservice programs.

2. To develop a collaborative approach to comprehen-
sive needs assessment and planning for professional
development in which interests and needs of all
participants in the educational.process would be

3. To encourage the development and utilization of
more effective organization procedures for education
decision-making, so that those who are affected by
decisions have an opportunity to participate in
making those decisions.

4. To develop procedures for the identification,
coordination, utilization, evaluation, and
dissemination of potential resources and resource
talent within the school system, the university,
and the community which could be channeled effectively
into clinical preservice and inservice training

5. To develop a systematic plan for the evaluation
of all clinical preservice and inservice training
activities conducted under the auspices of the
Teacher Center.

6. To develop a model collaborative organization
structure for the Alachua Teacher Center which
will provide for both effective policy and admin-
istrative leadership and broad involvement in
program design, implementation, and evaluation
by those who participate in its programs.

Center Governance

Since one of the major purposes of the Teacher

Education Center Act was to establish a partnership in

teacher education, and since that purpose is clearly

restated in the goals of local centers, the manner in

which centers are governed is an important aspect in any

description of centers.

A center council forms the governing body for each

of Florida's teacher education centers. Made up of repre-

sentatives from the teaching profession, colleges of educa-

tion, community colleges (in many instances, but not all),

school districts, and local communities, the council's

basic activities include: (1) determining what types of

programs are to be offered, (2) establishing an appropriate

budget so that those programs can be given, and (3) evaluating

the programs to assess the extent to which they meet the

training needs of teachers.

To accomplish these tasks, most center councils met

regularly, usually once a month, throughout the first year

of implementation. Most meetings were held in the administra-

tive offices of the school district. A few councils held

their meetings after school or in the evening, but most

councils met during the school day with participating

teachers released from their instructional duties during
the meeting.

In most cases center council meetings were controlled

by the center director who set the agenda, maintained the

pacing of the meeting, and reported to the council on events

and circumstances. The director usually initiated ideas,

requested discussion of particular topics, and exercised a

general influence over the interaction among council members.

The subject matter of most council meetings typically

reflected current concerns of the council and director, i.e.

setting priorities for training programs, working out

arrangements with participating universities, or evaluating

center programs. For an illustration of the topics that a

council was likely to work through see Chapter Four which

presents in chronological sequence the substantive issues

faced by a council in its first year of operation.

By law, teachers form a majority of each council,

which allows them the opportunity to exercise control over

their own professional training. But it is unlikely that

they could exercise any radical power through the center,

since according to law the overall operation of the center

is placed within the administrative structure of the school

district which the center serves. Consequently, all

teacher center activities have to be carried out in accordance

with school district regulations.

The relationship between the center council and the

host school district is established by the enabling legis-

lation in Section 231.606. According to the Act, the

center council is to recommend policy and procedures for the

center, recommend an appropriate budget, recommend the

employment of appropriate center staff, and develop goals

and objectives for the center within the policies as deter-

mined by the local school board. In contrast to the council's

general recommending function, the school district is to

appoint the members of the center council, adopt policy

and procedures for the center, adopt a budget for the center,

and appoint the director and staff of the center.

Center Funding
As established in the enabling legislation, centers

are jointly funded by participating school districts and

universities. Section 231.609 of the Act specified financial

responsibilities for both parties. School districts were to

provide appropriate and adequate facilities for center

operation, to employ a director and staff, and to budget for

center activities all appropriate funds for inservice

teacher education programs for the district. Universities,

through provisions of the Florida Board of Regents, were to

contribute faculty resources to the center.

School districts in Florida, whether they have a

teacher education center or not, are required by law

(Fla. Stat. R 236.0811) to budget five dollars per full-

time student in the district for the purpose of inservice

training for education personnel. Those districts with

centers used their inservice budgets to finance center

operation, so no new funds were required for a district to

start a center.

The Board of Regents allocated twenty-four full time

faculty positions for use in the state's teacher education

centers. Funds for those positions were taken from "service"

faculty budget lines available to universities. The

twenty-four faculty positions were spread unevenly among the

eight participating state universities; the University of

North Florida in Jacksonville did not participate in a center.

Two examples illustrate the uneven distribution of faculty

resources: the University of Florida was granted four

faculty positions to serve the center in Alachua County

with about 1,258 teachers, and the University of South

Florida received four positions to work with centers in

Polk County, Sarasota County and the six counties served

by the Southwest teacher center. Together these centers

served 7,452 teachers.

Universities were granted from two to four full-time

faculty positions for use in one or more of the state's

centers. Yet, full-time faculty positions were rarely

used. Instead, a full-time position was broken up into

one-third or one-fourth time appointments to a center. By

doing so, a university with four full-time faculty positions

allocated for center use could send from 12 to 15 part-time

faculty members to work with centers.

In addition to funds from school district and university

sources, the ten centers started in school year 1974-75

were eligible for a grant of up to $20,000 from the Depart-

ment of Education in Tallahassee. The funds were designated

for research and development purposes and could be used by

centers to provide services or materials needed to get a

center started.

To give an idea of the level of spending for center

programs, Table II lists center expenditures from September,

1974 to January 31, 1975. These data are contained in the

1975 annual report of the State Council for Teacher Education

Centers. Comparable data for the entire 1974-75 school

year are not readily available.

(9/74 through 1/75)

Center Expenditure

Alachua $61,935.08
Bay 71,823.00
Leon NA
Mideastern NA
Okaloosa 32,361.41
Osceola 46,429.00
PAEC 130,000.00
Polk 118,550.18
Sarasota 23,598.00
Southwest 25,401.46

Center Programs

The Teacher Education Center Act, as amended in 1974

specified the appropriate activities of the centers.

According to Section 231.603, each center's activities

were to include the following:

to assess inservice training needs as perceived by
classroom teachers, school district personnel,
university personnel, and other concerned agencies,

to develop programs based on those identified inservice

to provide human and material resources for inservice
training by whichever agents are best prepared to
deliver them,

to assess needs and provide the resources and
experiences for clinical preservice teacher training,
thus relating theoretical and practical study,

to facilitate the entry or re-entry of educational
personnel into the teaching profession,

to facilitate training processes which are based on
assessment of needs, the development of experiences
to meet those needs, and evaluation of the extent to
which those needs were met.

to facilitate internal and external evaluation which
would include, but not be limited to, data gathering,
process evaluation, product evaluation, and validation
of teaching competency.

Even though the enabling legislation called for centers

to be active in preservice and inservice teacher education,

most centers were involved primarily with inservice teacher

training activities. Table Three presents the numbers of

student interns (preservice) and classroom teachers (in-

service) served through the state's teacher education centers.

These data cover the period from the start of the 1974

school year to March 1, 1975. They are contained in the

1975 annual report of the State Council for Teacher Education


(9/74 to 3/75)

Center Teachers Served

Preservice Inservice

Alachua 1,208 1,000
Bay 46 902
Leon 213 4,513
Okaloosa 18 1,265
Osceola 7 400
Polk 300 3,000
Sarasota 25 1,200
Mideastern 0 45
PAEC 1 1,165
Southwest 0 2,642

TOTAL 1,818 16,132

As the above data indicate, most center programs were

offered for teachers already employed. Accordingly, one

of the most important aspects of center program development

was assessing the training needs of classroom teachers within

school districts.

The most common approach among centers to the assess-

ment of teacher training needs was to conduct a survey.

The survey instrument listed both general teaching skills

and skills or techniques directly related to specific subject

areas. Examples of general teaching skills would include

selecting and writing instructional goals and objectives,

motivating students, and individualizing instruction.

Subject area skills would include the following examples:

materials and methods of teaching metric measurement, chart,

map and graph skills for social studies, and environmental

education in the science curricula.* Teachers were asked to

respond to the list of teaching skills and subject area

competencies in terms of their current level of expertise

and their need for further training. Their responses were

tabulated and those areas ranked low in expertise and high

in perceived need of training were taken to be the areas for

which programs should be developed.

Once the needs assessment was completed, regardless of

particulars, it became the basis for further program

planning. The general sequence of planning typical of

most centers included the following steps:

a council and staff reviewed survey results of
perceived training needs,

council and staff considered school district training

council and staff reviewed available funds and training

* Both sets of examples are taken from the needs assessment
survey developed by the Southwest teacher education center.

*For instance, the district may be implementing a new reading
program that requires inservice training for all elemen-
tary teachers.

council and staff established priorities for
training programs,

the staff usually prepared a list of training
programs based on priorities developed,

the council offered suggestions and approved programs
and schedules,

the training programs were offered and then evaluated
by the council and staff to determine if they met the
training needs as determined by teachers and the
school district.

The emphasis throughout the program development process

was on providing programs that suited the perceived training

needs of teachers, as well as the requirements of the school

district, on using the available faculty resources from

participating universities, and on offering training programs

within the constraints of the school district's calendar,

budget, and policy.

Once program plans were established by the center council

and staff, education personnel were notified, trainers

identified, rooms scheduled and programs offered. When

programs were offered during school hours, substitutes were

assigned to participating teachers so they could attend.

When programs were offered after school or on weekends,

teachers were usually paid a stipend for their attendance.

During their first year of operation, a variety of

programs were offered through Florida's centers. A few

examples are illustrative. In the Alachua County center, a

group of secondary social studies teachers expressed a

desire for training in the techniques of oral history in order

to incorporate that method in their classrooms. The center

helped identify some resource people from the University of

Florida with expertise in the area, and a three-day work-

shop in oral history was offered. In the Osceola center,

a group of teachers in a newly formed middle school requested

help in designing interdisciplinary learning centers and

working together as a team. A faculty member from Florida

Technological University in Orlando, Florida,was identified

as having skills in these areas, and was assigned to work

with teachers in their school for a year as part of his

regular work load. In Lee County, Florida, served by the

Southwest center, teachers requested aid in recreational

math activities, and a teacher from a neighboring school

who had been successful in such activities was released from

her teaching duties to work with other teachers. Again,

in the Alachua County center, a classroom teacher and a

college faculty member exchanged roles for a week to share

their expertise with the other's class.

Teachers participated in center training programs for

a variety of reasons. In some centers, programs were offered

on days set aside for staff development and attendance was

required. Other than required attendance, some teachers took

programs to update their teaching certificate issued by the

state. Two routes for certificate renewal were available:

continued work at a university or inservice training within

the school district. Center programs were approved inservice

experiences for certificate renewal. In some districts,

teachers received raises in salary by accumulating credits

for graduate courses at universities or a set number of

inservice training programs.


Considering the enabling legislation and local center

goals, teacher education centers were established to

encourage cooperation among groups involved in teacher

education and to ensure that training programs become

responsive to the expressed needs of teachers. The joint

funding of centers by school districts and universities, as

well as the representative council form of center governance,

were designed to build a sense of partnership among partici-

pating groups. The emphasis on needs assessment as a

fundamental process in program development represented an

effort to make training experiences pertinent to practicing


It is important to realize that Florida's centers were

designed to be more of a process than a place for training.

The implementation of centers called for new organizational

relationships among school districts, universities, and

classroom teachers. They required new strategies for

program development. They were adventures in joint funding.


They established new ways of planning for and conducting

inservice teacher education. The problems associated with

their implementation are identified in Chapter Three.


In broad strokes, the enabling legislation asked local

school districts, colleges of education, and classroom

teachers to break away from old habits. Teacher training

was to be conceived in a new way and traditional relations

among organizations were to be altered. The problems of

organizational change identified in this chapter are the

circumstances and activities of groups that hindered the

realization of the intent of the enabling legislation.

Preexisting Structures

Until the mandate for teacher centers, each school

district in Florida carried out inservice teacher education

with considerable autonomy, according to interviews with

school district supervisory personnel. In each school dis-

trict, one or more staff members were assigned the responsi-

bility of developing the district's Master Inservice Plan,

a document required by the Florida Department of Education

that describes in behavioral objective language the inservice

programs offered within the school district. The Master

Inservice Plan was developed in consultation with an advisory

group of teachers, supervisors and administrators, but in

most districts the advisory group was usually limited to

giving tacit approval to plans developed by school district

staff. Basically the tasks and processes involved in deter-

mining teacher training needs, developing programs, securing

trainers and consultants, and evaluating the programs were

initiated and controlled by school district staff. Develop-

ing and providing inservice teacher education programs was

considered the domain of the school district's staff.

Similarly, colleges of education felt that preservice

teacher education and graduate training were its major

responsibilities. Little systematic planning was given to

programming and staffing inservice teacher education. Except-

ing the placement of student teachers, little effort was made

to work cooperatively with school districts. Individual

faculty members were active as consultants and trainers.

For more college faculty, the involvement in inservice

teacher training was individual and ad hoc at best. The

enabling legislation sought to bring an end to the piece-

meal involvement of colleges of education in inservice

teacher training by involving college faculty in the govern-

ance of centers and by assigning faculty to work in centers

as part of their regular job assignment. To enforce this

intent, Section 231.610 of the Act prohibited further

payment of consulting fees to college of education faculty

working within teacher education centers.

Teachers were involved in inservice teacher training

as consumers. In most cases, they were clients in a system

that required courses for degree programs or certain inservice

programs for continued certification after graduation.

Classroom teachers had little influence on what was offered

and no specific mechanism for making their desires and

interests known. When enrolled in graduate programs,

teachers could choose among electives. When participating

in school district sponsored inservice workshops, teachers

had some opportunities to choose among alternative programs.

But in both cases, teachers were typically given training

programs deemed important or necessary by others.

Before the development of Florida's teacher education

centers, there were a few attempts of limited scope to

establish cooperative relations in teacher education. Portal

schools and experimental competency based teacher education

programs were two examples. In each case, teacher training

programs were to be developed and operated cooperatively by

school districts, colleges of education, and teachers.

However, these earlier efforts did not require the extent

of shared decision-making and joint responsibility mandated

for teacher education centers.

These earlier efforts did stir interest in school

district/university cooperation in inservice teacher education.

Of the state's nine publicly supported universities, the

University of South Florida in Tampa and Florida State

University in Tallahassee were the most aggressive in

developing cooperative programs with nearby school districts

during these earlier efforts. When teacher centers started

in Florida, these two universities participated in more

centers than any other state supported universities.

Despite the interest on the part of some universities

and school districts in earlier cooperative efforts in

teacher education, no real precedents or models existed for

the type of collaboration called for by the implementation

of teacher education centers. Lacking was an established

model of cooperative decision-making among school district

administrators, college faculty, and classroom teachers.

There was no precedent for a jointly funded program for

inservice teacher training. A well thought out means of

assessing self-identified training needs of teachers and

developing programs based on those needs was absent. Also

lacking was the institutional reward for classroom teachers,

college faculty, and school district administrators to view

their roles in a new way and to build new sets of relations

with one another.

The implementation of teacher education centers called

for new sets of behavior on the part of participating groups.

Although it might seem unfamiliar to them, teachers were to

assume more initiative and responsibility in their profes-

sional training. School district administrators were to

work collaboratively with others and abandon their assumed

duty of "giving" inservice training to teachers, regardless

of the views of teachers. University personnel were to

attend to teachers and school district administrators as

partners in an enterprise thought to be their own, and plan

with them inservice programs to be offered in school

districts, not in college classrooms. Thus, the implementa-

tion of teacher education centers called for new sets of

relations and patterns of behaviors among groups involved

in teacher education.

Common Problems

The task of this chapter is to identify common problems

experienced by Florida's teacher centers during their first

year of implementation. This approach is justified because

the ten centers shared a common structure assigned by law,

and their locally established goals expressed common themes.

Based on their reform goals, the state's ten centers also

set up common expectations for new behaviors and institutional

change, and those implementing centers generally faced

similar preexisting conditions regardless of their host

school district or participating university.

Simply put, centers faced common problems because

they shared a common shape and mission. They shared common

goals for change and faced similar conditions. While each

center did experience certain problems due to local condi-

tions, these were not the focus of this study.

The following sections of this chapter identify and

discuss those problems of organizational change related to

the basic characteristics of Florida's teacher centers --

governance, finance, and program development -- as well as

those problems related to planning centers and supporting

their activities.

Planning for Change

A smooth start for teacher centers was hindered by the

lack of specific information at the local level. Even though

the original enabling legislation was passed at the end of

the 1973 legislative session, it was not until a year later

that specific information about the requirements for starting

a center became available to local school districts and

teacher training programs about the requirements for starting

a teacher education center. As mentioned earlier, the school

year immediately following the passage of the enabling

legislation was used as a planning year at the state level.

Exact information about teacher center implementation

was not sent out by the Florida Department of Education in

Tallahassee until late June, 1974, with centers to begin

implementation in September, 1974. A package of information

was sent to all Florida school districts and state approved

teacher education programs that outlined the processes

involved in developing a teacher education center. The

sequence for submission, review and approval of proposals

for teacher centers included the following steps.

The Commissioner of Education sends each school
district and each university with an approved teacher
education program information about teacher education
centers and requests a letter of intent to participate
in the program.

The State Council for Teacher Education Centers
receives letters of intent and makes recommendations
to the Commissioner of Education.

The Commissioner of Education invites selected districts
and universities to submit complete teacher education
center proposals.

Upon recommendation of the State Council for Teacher
Education Centers, final proposals are approved by the
Commissioner of Education.

The package of instructions informed school districts

and universities that if they were interested in starting

a center, they had to submit a "letter of intent" to the

Commissioner of Education by the 12th of July, 1974. As

such, local groups had less than three weeks to decide

whether to start a center and develop specific preliminary

plans for their center. A few centers had begun general

planning before specific information was available.

The State Council met July 22 and 23, 1974,and reviewed

thirteen letters of intent received by the Department of

Education. The council recommended ten sites to the Commis-

sioner of Education as possible centers, and asked those

sites to develop a full proposal for a center. Prospective

centers were then notified and were asked to submit their

proposals as soon as possible. Four weeks later at the

State Council meeting on August 19th, seven of the ten sites

had submitted their proposals. Proposals for a center had

to specify how the center would be organized and staffed,

how it would operate, what its goals and objectives would

be, and how it would evaluate its progress. Detailed planning

had to be done hurriedly.

State guidelines for center planning required the involve-

ment of three groups in the planning process; classroom

teachers, school district administrators and college faculty.

That requirement was consistent with the spirit of the

enabling legislation. At the local level, however, the

requirement caused problems in arranging times and places

for meetings to plan for the center.

Center directors reported that not enough time was

allowed to plan collaboratively. Under the pressure of

deadlines, letters of intent and proposals were developed

without the desired full participation of all three groups.

In one case, the school district's teacher organization was

not consulted about the plans for a teacher center until the

local proposal was returned to the school district by the

Department of Education because it lacked the required

signature of the teacher organization representative.

Interviews with center personnel revealed that the

steps involved in collaborative planning took more time than

most people estimated. Activities reported as consuming

more time than anticipated included arranging schedules for

meetings with people, getting to know unfamiliar faces,

considering the meaning of the enabling legislation and

deciding on a plan for a center, writing a proposal that

included goals and objectives agreeable to all, and getting

appropriate signatures through school district and university


The problems associated with a lack of adequate planning

time at the local level were frustrated further by a lack

of clear.,specific directives to give guidance and assurance

to individuals planning for and operating the fledgling

centers. Some general guidelines for center operation were

provided at the state level through the enabling legislation.

Such guides established a particular form or organization

and spirit of "partnership" for the centers. Also, the

package of information sent from the Department of Education

to local districts and teacher education programs included

six principles which center proposals were to address. The

principles were as follows:

Teacher education centers should not le considered as
an education program separate from existing institutions.

Centers function more to facilitate and coordinate
available resources rather than to perform the actual
delivery of services.

Centers represent collaboration and cooperation in a
shared decision-making process among involved agencies.

Centers clearly reflect the increased need for class-
room teacher involvement in teacher education decision-

Centers require a funding system which supports collabora-

Centers direct attention to the need for a career-long
process of teacher education.

Although such general principles were available to guide

those starting centers, when questions arose about specifics

of center operation, center personnel felt lost and expressed

concern about the lack of guidance. Those charged with the

management of teacher centers were unsure of such basic

issues as the following:

What kinds of resources were available through the
university. How much is available to our center?
How do we arrange to receive these resources? Who
pays for the travel of university personnel to
conduct workshops? How is the time of university
faculty accounted for?

Is the teacher education center responsible for
training programs just for teachers, or is it
responsible for the staff development of all school
board employees?

How are center funds to be managed in multi-district
centers? Does each district have to send all of its
staff development funds to the center? What if
personnel from one district of a multi-district center
do not participate in a particular center activity;
are funds from that district used to support it?

How are center training programs to be developed?
Is there a sound assessment strategy for determining
teacher training needs? How are programs to be
evaluated? Are staff development programs developed
last year to be implemented this year, or does
that violate the law?

How are non-credit faculty managed in colleges of
education when faculty load is typically judged on
credit hour activity? What should be the basis for
faculty pay? How can faculty schedules be determined
in advance?

Problems of Governance

The concept of collaboration in Florida's centers was

functionally expressed in mandating a representative center

council as the basis for teacher center governance. Repre-

sentation did not directly lead to equal partnership. Inter-

views with teachers, college faculty, and school district

administrators, as well as observations of center council

meetings and routine center activities revealed three factors

that hindered groups from participating on center councils

as equal partners: (a) job descriptions and traditional

role expectations, (b) flow and possession of necessary

information, and (c) distribution of authority within the


Role expectations on the part of classroom teachers

worked against their participation as full partners in

council meetings. Eddy (1969) has shown that teachers in

bureaucratic school systems become socialized into a

subordinate role. In interviews, teachers reported a reluc-

tance to disagree with other members of the council; they

felt that administrators and college faculty had special

knowledge and insight into participating school districts

and universities. Also during council meetings, teachers

were less likely to initiate ideas or items for action than

were school district administrators or college faculty.

Another indication of their subordinate role was their

appointment to the council by the district superintendent.

Apart from role expectations, the job description for

teachers directly hindered their full participation in

council meetings. Usually teachers are charged with instruc-

tional responsibilities with few duties beyond classroom

teaching. Teachers serving on center councils were faced

with a problem, since there was little time available to

them for preparation or participation in council meetings.

For teacher representatives on the council, time for

consulting other teachers and studying school district policy

and fiscal affairs was almost nonexistent. School district

administrators and university personnel serving on the

council were not handicapped in the same way. Their job

descriptions included flexible schedules, and they had easy

access to information and one another which teachers do not.

Traditional job descriptions and role expectations also

influenced the possession and flow of information; another

important factor affecting how council members could act as

partners. Before centers started, information about inservice

education was concentrated among school district staff

members, and disseminated to school personnel through memoranda

that informed them of training activities. The flow of

information was from the central administrative office to

the schools, a flow suited to the superordinate/subordinate

structure for inservice teacher education.

The center council with its representative membership

was supposed to provide a more "open" structure for communi-

cation among involved groups. However, center directors

usually detained possession of the basic information needed

for center operation. The director was the conduit for

information from local school districts) and the Department

of Education in Tallahassee. During council meetings most

of the time was taken up by the director passing on informa-

tion to council members. Little independent information

was available. Directors also controlled the flow and

possession of information, by setting the agenda for council


Although teacher centers were predicated on the

notion of collaboration and partnership in teacher education,

the structure assigned to centers by the enabling legisla-

tion mitigated against the practice of collaboration and a

sense of partnership. The relationship between the center

council and the host school district was critical in this

regard. According to the Teacher Education Center Act the

center council was charged with a general recommending

function. In contrast, the authority assigned to the

school district included: appointment of council members,

adoption of center policy and procedures, appointment of

center director and staff, and adoption of the center budget.

Clearly, the school district was not an equal partner with

college faculty and classroom teachers.

Interviews with teachers revealed their awareness of

the structure and the hinderance it placed on collaboration.

They expressed a concern that their interests were being

placed second to those of the school district. Additionally,

council meetings were observed in which teachers introduced

an idea or plan for center activity that went against

school district regulation or previous inservice arrange-

ments made by the district, and in those cases the teacher

initiated idea was disallowed.

By making teacher education centers part of school

district administrative units, other conditions were

introduced that also added to the problems of partnership.

Two examples illustrate this point. Eight of the nine

centers under study had their offices housed in the school

district administrative building. Their written communica-

tions were sent through school district channels and bore

the district's letterhead. There was no uncertainty as to

who "owned" the center. Similarly, the center director and

center staff were school district employees, and as such

were held accountable within that system. As district

employees, center directors were associated with other

district personnel in a variety of ways. The center director

in one center served as the district's Assistant Superintendent

for Instruction. In another center where the district

superintendent was elected, the center director was the

campaign manager for the superintendent.

Teachers issued another complaint. While some

superintendents appointed teachers to the council based on

the recommendation of the local teacher organization, other

superintendents were thought to appoint teachers who would

merely go along with school district decrees. This possi-

bility allowed for double representation by the school


Some typical comments of center participants illustrate

the problems of governance discussed in this section:

There is a lack of background information necessary
for decision-making, particularly among teachers.

Traditional teacher-administrator differences are
carried into council meetings and interfere with
desirable group processes.

People in power don't have to collaborate.

Council members don't have the interpersonal communica-
tion skills to be effective collaborators.

A few people tend to dominate information and decision-
making at the expense of others.

It is possible for the superintendent, sometimes an
assistant superintendent, to override a project
which the council has agreed to sponsor.

Decisions are made at another level and the council
talks them over and acts as a rubber stamp.

Most of the time, I don't know enough to put my two
cents in.

I supported that training activity because Mr. X
(a member of the district staff) said it was necessary.

Problems of Funding

To encourage a sense of partnership, the enabling

legislation mandated that centers be jointly funded by

school districts and universities. However, in most centers

school districts contributed far more toward center operation

than participating universities. The unequal contributions

of districts and universities mitigated against a sense of

partnership and favored the view that teacher centers were

owned and operated by school districts.

As mentioned earlier, school districts contributed

$5.00 per full time (equivalent) student to center operation.

Universities provided centers with one and one-half to four

faculty positions, depending on allocations from the Board

of Regents. With each faculty position valued at S20,000

for twelve months, a center could receive from a participating

university a maximum of S80,000 in faculty services.

The relative impact of the financial contribution by

a university depended on the size of the host school district.

In a small school district with a center, the financial

contribution of the district would be relatively balanced

with that of a university, helping to support the notion of

partnership. For example, in the Osceola County teacher

center, the smallest district with a center, the school

district contributed about S40,000 to the center, and the

participating university (Florida Technological University)

contributed a similar amount in faculty resources. The case

was dramatically different for a large school district,

where a district's contribution to the center's operation

would be far greater than faculty resources received from

a university. In Polk County, the district contributed over

$300,000 to the center, matched by only $21,000 in faculty

resources from the University of South Florida.

Problems of Program Development

Section 231.603 of the enabling legislation specifically

charges centers with the duty to "assess inservice training

needs as perceived by classroom teachers, school district

personnel, university personnel, and other concerned agencies"

and to "develop programs based on those identified inservice

needs." To the extent that Florida's centers developed

programs that responded to teacher identified training

needs, the inservice programs could be considered "teacher

centered." Such an accomplishment was blocked because most

centers lacked an adequate means of assessing training


Before the advent of centers, inservice training programs

were typically based on the perceptions of school district

supervisory staff, and the issue of assessing training needs

in a comprehensive way came as something new to most districts.

During the first several months of center implementation,

centers offered inservice programs planned and developed

during the previous school year (1973-74). Not until the

second part of the 1974-75 school year did most centers

develop or adopt a means to assess the training needs of


Assessment techniques differed according to the

number of teachers served. Four centers in larger districts

joined together in borrowing a technique developed in Mesa,

Arizona, a technique based on a survey of educational

personnel. This technique has been briefly described in

the section on program development in Ctapter Two. The

actual survey instruments as modified for use in one

center are published as an Appendix in the monograph,

Implementing Teacher Education Centers: The Florida Exper-

ience, by Van Fleet, Kinzer, and Lutz (1976). Centers in

smaller districts relied on a more infor-al means of needs

assessment, such as asking one teacher in each school to

gather information about what types of training programs

teachers and staff desired in that school.

Since the survey method was commonly used, and affected

the greatest number of teachers served by Florida's centers,

it warrants examination. Based on observations of its use

and interviews with teachers, two proble-s with this needs

assessment technique were evident to the author. Because

this survey technique was used in centers serving large

numbers of teachers, the results were usually tabulated by

computer. The computer print-out of the survey results

came to be perceived as the "bible" for program development

in these centers: it was even specifically referred to by

that name by certain directors. The appearance of the

computer print-out lent an authority of "bard data" to the

questionnaire. Little attention was paid to teacher

attitudes toward the survey instrument. During an interview,

one teacher who had recently completed a survey readily

admitted that teachers did not take the questionnaire

seriously. He had heard that one teacher had a student fill

out the form. Secondly, in interviews teachers expressed

a reluctance to record on the instrument what they felt were

their weaknesses. They feared that the information would

be used against them in teacher evaluations. They were

particularly fearful that the information would become known

to their principals.

Beyond the technological problem of assessing training

needs of educators, problems of established role behaviors

and institutional reward systems hindered the development

of inservice programs that were truly teacher centered.

Center directors, as school district administrators, reported

that they were rewarded in most instances for implementing

and administering policy according to fixed guidelines, and

for not causing disturbances within the system. As described

earlier, there were few fixed guidelines for center operation

during the early phases of implementation, and the new

institutional relationships and cooperative procedures

called for by center operation upset previously existing

patterns. Subsequently, as centers were started, directors

were placed in an insecure position on both counts.

College of education faculty active in teacher centers

reported that the time and energy they spent working in

teacher centers was not rewarded equally as time spent on

research or scholarly writing. These faculty members also

pointed to a division they saw among college of education

faculty; some were seen as service oriented, others

academically oriented. It was felt that the academic

faculty controlled the reward structure. In both cases,

institutional reform was called for by the implementation

of teacher centers, but traditional expectations and reward

systems were not altered. The new behaviors needed to

develop and produce inservice programs in a different way

were not supported.

Problems of Support for Center Activities

The intent of the enabling legislation was to create

a state-wide system of teacher centers, as a means to

achieve the announced new policy for teacher education. The

legislative proclamation met with two problems. The financial

incentives for starting a center made them attractive to

small and medium sized school districts and unattractive to

large, urban districts. Secondly, during their first year

of implementation, centers enjoyed little grass roots support

among classroom teachers.

School districts differed in their perceptions regarding

the attractiveness of starting a center. A key factor was

the size of the school district. The smaller the district,

the more financial incentive there was to start a center.

Two financial incentives were available to districts. Each

center was eligible to receive faculty resources from

participating universities, amounting to a maximum of

$80,000 per year. Most districts received less than that

amount. Also the State Department of Education in Tallahassee

granted up to $20,000 of research and development funds to

each of the state's ten centers. Consequently, in a small

school district the additional resources available for

starting a center could equal the previously existing budget

for inservice programs, and double the amount of resources

available for staff development. For a large urban district,

the financial advantages for starting a center were minimal.

During the 1974-75 school year, large districts in Florida's

metropolitan areas had staff development budgets that

approached or exceeded a million dollars per year. The

maximum they could gain by starting a center was S100,000,

but they were likely to receive much less. The financial

incentives for initiating a center were not compelling for

large districts.

Teacher centers were, in effect, a state-level

innovation that required local implementation. Although the

enabling legislation was supported by the leadership of the

state's teacher organization (then the Florida Education

Association), in general, grass roots support for teacher

centers was lacking among local classroom teachers during

the first year of operation. Each center involved a small

number of teachers in the center council, and such teachers

were supporters and advocates for the center. But most

teachers were not familiar with the center concept or the

particular activities of their local center. A survey taken

at the request of one center after a year of operation

showed that eighty per cent of the teachers in the sample

of one hundred teachers knew little or nothing about the

operation or programs of the local teacher center. Inter-

views with center directors and classroom teachers in other

districts with centers suggested that this was true in

other centers as well.

The following excerpts from teacher interviews

illustrate this point.

Q: How many teachers in this building know about
the teacher education center?

A: Not very many. Others may have heard about it,
but don't pay any attention to it.

Q: How did you get on the teacher center council?

A: I got a note from the district superintendent in
my mailbox at school telling me I was appointed
to the teacher center council and when the
meeting was to be. I didn't know anything about
the center at the time.

Q: What do the teachers you know think about
teacher centers?

A: Many of them think it's a sham, another gimmick in
a long line of new ideas. If they don't see it
making a difference in their classroom, many of
them are not interested. It will take time.

Q: What do you know about your school district's
teacher center?

A: Teacher center? Oh! I remember a fellow came in
and talked about it in a faculty meeting. Sounds
like a good idea, I guess.


Florida's teacher education centers were established

as a means to achieve a new state policy for teacher educa-

tion; a policy that encouraged cooperation among colleges,

school districts, and classroom teachers. New activities

and social relations were to be adopted to bring groups

together in a partnership for the education of teachers.

The circumstances and conditions that hindered the

accomplishment of prescribed organizational changes were

considered to be problems of implementation. In this

chapter a number of common problems have been identified.

The problems most centers faced included the following:

the lack of precedent in collaborative arrangements
in teacher education, particularly to the extent
required for center operation,

hurried planning, without the full participation of
all groups,

lack of specific information necessary to start and
operate a center,

job descriptions and role expectations that hindered
collaboration and partnership,

an inadequate flow of information needed for shared


an imbalance in the financial base for center operation
that facilitated a sense of ownership on the part of
host school districts,

an inadequate means of assessing teacher training nee-s,

the lack of supporting reward systems for center

differing financial incentives for starting a center.

the lack of grass-roots support for centers.


The center council is the cornerstone of center

operation. It is the forum for decision making about

program development, budget allocations, and policy formu-

lation. Although it is assigned a recommending function in

relation to the authority of the local school board, the

council's activities are the core of the teacher center

concept in Florida. The reader is reminded that Florida's

centers are more of a process than a place for teacher

training, more of a concept than a concrete building.

Because the center council is fundamental to the

overall center operation, it is worthy of detailed attention.

This chapter presents a case study of the issues that come

before a center council during its first year of operation.

These issues reflect the problems of implementation being

experienced by the center. Beginning with preliminary

meetings before the center is funded, the case study moves

through subsequent meetings in which council members

question the purpose of the center, how it should be

organized and operated, and what its relationships with

other agencies should be. Concerns shift over time, with the

more fundamental ones persisting, often unresolved. The

case study is presented in a diary format. It is based on

observations of council meetings and supplemented with

notes kept by Dr. Suzanne Kinzer.

Preliminary Meetings

The beginning of this teacher center can be traced

back to discussions between the superintendent of one of

Florida's medium-sized school districts and the dean of a

nearby college of education. Both were familiar with the

recently passed teacher center legislation and had already

discussed the possibility of starting a teacher center

with others. They agreed that the collaborative arrangements

available through a teacher center might improve teacher

education, particularly inservice programs, and they decided

to cooperate in starting a local center. The two institutions

had a history of cooperation through informal arrangements,

but the teacher center made the relationship more formal

and more structured.

A planning committee for the center was formed. The

superintendent appointed six teachers from those recommended

by the local teachers' organization and two county staff

personnel; the dean appointed two members from the college

of education faculty. The Human Rights Council, a local

community agency, was asked to select a citizen representative

for the committee. With the planning committee so formed,

the superintendent appointed an acting chairperson. The

planning committee was later to become the basis for the

teacher center council, whose composition would remain the

same until changed by actions of the local school board.

The first preliminary meeting was held in early July,

1974. The purpose of this meeting was to consider submitting

a "letter of intent" to the State Council for Teacher

Education Centers as the first step in starting a center.

Issues raised in this first meeting included the following.

What might a center look like? What would be its purpose?

Who could participate? How would the center relate to

existing programs and activities in teacher education? Who

was to plan future meetings? Who should write the letter

of intent? How should the proposal be prepared? To some

extent these issues were resolved by local policy decisions.

Certain issues were determined by requirements of the

enabling legislation or guidelines from the Florida Depart-

ment of Education.

Some members talked of a center that might be a

specific place, one which could be tied into an already

existing learning resources center. Others felt the center

should be a fluid operation of activities. To be consistent

with the enabling legislation, the members concluded that

the center would function as a clearinghouse and coordinating

agency for inservice teacher education activities within

the school district. As part of the discussion about what

a center might be and do, possible goals and objectives

for the center were listed and debated as preparation for

writing the letter of intent.

In subsequent preliminary meetings during the summer

of 1974 the following kinds of activities and discussions

took much of the committee's time:

a review of needs assessment techniques previously
used to develop inservice programs,

a review of money spent on inservice education
activities in previous years,

the examination of possible relationships between the
center and existing groups, e.g., the inservice
committee of the school district and the proposed
teacher center council,

a determination of lines of accountability and

a study of other teacher centers,

an examination of the university's relationship to
the teacher center, and

a consideration of the possible conflict between
teacher identified needs and goals and school district
identified needs and goals.

After initial discussions of the above issues, and

with the consent of the planning committee, the acting

chairman drafted a letter of intent outlining the concept

of the proposed teacher center and presented it to the

school board for approval. Upon approval the letter was

sent to the State Council for Teacher Education Centers, via

the Department of Education in Tallahassee.

Planning for the center continued. At the next meeting

the planning committee divided into task groups for the

purpose of writing a proposal for the center. Task groups

were formed around these issues: (1) needs assessment

procedures for the center; (2) activities of the center;

(3) future projections of growth; (4) organizational chart

and budget for the center; and (5) goals, objectives, measure-

ment procedures, and data collection to be used by the

center. Each task group met independently and reported

their ideas to the full committee at a later meeting. The

acting chairman then synthesized the ideas of the task groups

to write the final proposal required for state funding.

By late summer, 1974,the center was approved by the

State Council. The planning committee members began

assuming the full responsibilities of the teacher center

council. One of the first requirements was to select a

center director and staff, which would replace the acting

committee chairman appointed by the superintendent. Since

several council members had expressed interest in the full-

time positions of director and resource teacher for the

center, the council agreed to set up a selection committee

apart from the council to avoid the risk of personal conflict

among council members. The dean, the superintendent, and

the executive board of the teachers' organization were each

asked to appoint one person to serve, along with the citizen

representative on the council, as an interview committee

for staff selection. Based on their recommendations, a

center director -- a former school district administrator --

and a resource teacher -- a former classroom teacher -- were

appointed. With newly appointed staff, the original planning

group then became the official teacher center council.

Since classes were to begin in a few weeks, the

council was immediately concerned with getting information

about the center into the schools. To that end, a system

of "contact" teachers was devised. A contact teacher -as

selected for each school and asked to inform the teachers

and staff in that school about the center, as well as

inform the center about the training needs of the personnel

in their school. To orient contact teachers to the center

and its functions, a meeting was arranged during the pre-

planning days of the 1974-75 school year.*

The September Meeting

At the first official council meeting in September

it became apparent that fundamental questions about ho- the

council was to be organized and function demanded special

attention. A committee was appointed among council =e=bers

to draft a working policy for the teacher center. At the

October meeting a draft of the committee's working policy

*Preplanning days are those days that teachers are required
to work in late August or early September before students
begin their classes.

was presented to the council and became a crucial issue

for several months. Formulating and clarifying the center's

policy became a lasting concern, one often neglected in

deference to more immediate problems.

A second issue raised during the first meeting concerned

how the council was to allocate funds; particularly, how

the council was to respond to resource requests by individual

teachers. The director was already receiving requests

from many teachers for funds to attend various fall confer-

ences for educators. Working without any guidelines, the

director asked the council for assistance. The council

suggested emergency procedures to deal with the requests and"

a special meeting was called to appraise the requests for

funds. The meeting was long and tedious, and resulted not

in the generation of guidelines or priorities for processing

future requests, but in the review of the pros and cons of

individual requests currently before the council. Although

the council did decide on the pressing requests, it failed

to set long lasting policy or establish guidelines for

future efforts.

The October Meeting

At the October meeting, a draft of the working policy

was presented to the council by the previously established

committee. After reviewing the draft, it was approved with

suggested revision. However, the issue of a working policy

for the center was far from settled, as revealed in-later


During the discussion related to the approval of the

working policy, three key issues were raised. First,

confusion still existed as to the function of the center

council. Was it an advisory body or a policy making group?

Certain members felt the council should have more power.

Eventually, council members deferred to the legislative

mandate which charged the council with recommending functions.

Second, the issue of council membership was raised.

The director asked if school principals should be represented.

Some members argued that principal involvement would improve

communications with the schools; others said that teachers

would not be free to express their ideas if their principals

were present in a meeting. The council voted to add a

principal representative, and acknowledged that an additional

teacher would have to be added to the council to maintain

a majority of teachers, as required by law. Additionally,

the originally designated community representative from the

Human Relations Board asked to withdraw from the council.

The council agreed to honor this request and to invite for

membership a citizen known to several council members who

had served on similar groups.

Thirdly, procedures for screening financial requests

were again discussed. It was decided that a committee of the

council would work with the center director and staff to

propose budget categories and expenditure limits. The

council also delegated authority to the center staff to act

upon requests in approved categories up to $500 without

further council approval. The overall center budget would

be subject to school board approval.

During the October meeting the council did identify

several tentative priorities for center activities.

the involvement of teachers in decision-making regarding
inservice teacher education,

a greater concern with preservice teacher training,
especially through improving university/public school

the development and exchange of practical ideas for
use in the classroom, along with an increased use of
teacher talent in training programs,

sponsoring the development and dissemination of new
ideas and innovations,

improving center functioning through the development
of activities regarding communication with the schools
and council operation,

encourage a more thorough and continuing program
evaluation in teacher education.

Another important issue surfaced during this meeting.

Inquiries in the schools indicated that neither the council

nor the center were well known among teachers. Teachers

were either ignorant of teacher center services and


possibilities, or in some cases already skeptical about

the center as a new means for inservice education. To help

alleviate this problem, the council agreed to field test

some new materials focusing on human relations processes

and communication skills designed especially for members of

teacher center councils.

The November Meeting

At this meeting a number of special guests were

present, including the superintendent of the local school

district, the assistant superintendent for instruction, and

the dean of the college of education. Their comments

expressed several different themes and concerns, all of

which were relevant to the future role and function of the

teacher center council:

Council was spending an inappropriate amount of time
reviewing specific proposals on a project by project
basis, rather than setting directions, policies, and
making recommendations regarding staff development.
Had the council inadvertently gotten involved in
directing the center staff to implement center activities
before priorities had been set?

Activities such as designing needs assessment pro-
cedures, recommending staff development policy,
identifying criteria for project evaluation, and
monitoring the implementation of staff development
programs were suggested as examples of appropriate
council functions.

Staff development is multi-leveled, including district
wide programs, school based programs, and individual
programs. How do all of these levels fit into center
activity? Specific concerns were expressed about the
program supervisor's role in center activity.

Council was urged to identify teacher needs from a
variety of perspectives and to plan in the spring for
teacher center budgeting.

The visitors expressed concern about their lack of
information about council activities.

These remarks caused a considerable amount of reaction

among council members, some of which were openly expressed.

The following are sample responses.

the presence of people in power suggested their
commitment to teacher center activity;

there is a need to develop a means of personal
communication with teachers so they can better under-
stand center activities;

methods for more effective communication between
schools and the college of education should be developed;

attention should be paid to the lack of procedures to
assess teacher training needs;

planning should be undertaken for next year so that
carefully established priorities could provide direction
for the center;

discussion should be renewed on center policy prior
to an upcoming school board meeting, particularly in
light of the day's meeting.

Some teachers felt that a political maneuver had

occurred in which the "bosses" were trying to keep the

council from gaining too much power by taking away their

direct involvement in approving or disapproving specific

training projects.

The December Meeting

By December the debate over a working policy for the

council was not yet over. The meeting was spent reviewing

the proposed policy in relation to recent criticisms by the

superintendent and dean of the college of education. The

council considered including the recently developed list of

tentative priorities in the policy statement, but decided

against doing so since the list needed further clarification

and refinement. There was also some concern about the list

not being based on an assessment of teacher training needs,

and thus it was inconsistent with the intent of the teacher

center concept. Due to these reservations, the list was

tabled indefinitely, and the issue of a working policy

remained unresolved.

With attempts to set a direction for the center ending

again in frustration, the issue of communication was resumed.

The center staff had taken measures to improve the image of

the center by producing a slide-tape presentation that

explained the teacher center concept and showed what the

center could provide for teachers. In addition, meetings

with contact teachers were held to ensure their cooperation.

A committee of council members was formed to consider the

communication problem and suggest appropriate strategies.

Several committee members had recently returned from a

state-wide meeting for educators involved in teacher centers,

a meeting in which they developed some ideas for improving


At the end of the calendar year 1974, the teacher

center council was unsure of its purpose, and unclear about

the scope of its role. This lack of clarity was common

among Florida's centers. Other major problems that found

expression in these early council meetings, such as communi-

cation, needs assessment techniques, and proper relationships

with other agencies were also common among Florida's teacher

centers in their first year.

The January Meeting

As the center council began the new year, a number

of new issues emerged. Inservice training for principals

was discussed as the new principal representative reported

on a survey of principals he had conducted. The director

requested help in designing a procedure for assessing

teacher training needs.

The issue of preservice teacher education also emerged

in the January meeting. The council had been primarily

concerned with inservice teacher education during its early

months of operation. The issue was raised in connection

with the placement of student teachers in the district's

schools. It was noted that the college of education

traditionally thought of student teaching as its proper

domain, but that the presence of a teacher center was to

make the relationship between the school district and the

college of education more cooperative than in the past.

The discussion of preservice teacher education included the

following points:

supervision of interns by the college of education
faculty is inadequate,

interns are not well prepared,

the teacher center could play an important role in
bringing the school district and college of education
into a cooperative relationship,

the university reward system for its faculty does not
support service in the field,

defensive attitudes exist among teachers, college
faculty, and school district administrators, and

a university project on collaboration has made some
studies in improving understanding among different
role groups in teacher education. It could also serve
as a vehicle for bringing people who operate within
the center together to express concerns and share

A possible boycott of accepting student teachers by

the local teacher association added another dimension to

the issue of preservice teacher education. Traditionally,

teachers who accepted supervision of a student teacher received

a free university course. Now teachers were being asked to

pay a fee, which precipitated the threat of a boycott.

Certain council members argued that the council should side

with the teachers and support the boycott. But eventually

the council adopted a position that ultimatums should not

be issued and that the involved groups should work together

to settle their differences of opinion. A committee of the

council was established to explore what the council and

center could do in the area of preservice teacher education.

The council's chairman reported on his presentation

of the revised working policy of the council to the school

board. Although the board approved the working policy,

it expressed concern about the lack of preservice activities

in the center and criticized the council for the little

degree of citizen involvement. Based on its concern, the

school board voted to change the composition of the center's

council. The center was to include three citizens, ten

teachers, two members of the school district staff, one

principal, and two college of education faculty.

Because of the change in council composition, the entry

of new members became an immediate concern. Training by

a university project interested in building the process of

collaboration was suggested to help orient new members.

The February Meeting

The February meeting brought another crucial issue

to the council's attention, namely whether the school district

was to continue its support of the center's director and


The council's chairman reported on a meeting held with

the superintendent who planned to make major changes in

center operation. The superintendent wanted to keep the

teacher center council active as an advisory group for

inservice teacher education, but to eliminate the full time

positions of director and resource teacher because of budget

cuts. The superintendent also wanted to allocate a large

portion of staff development funds directly to individual

schools, rather than using the council to allocate funds.

A detailed discussion followed dealing with the implications

of the superintendent's plans. A letter was sent requesting

the superintendent to attend the next council meeting.

In addition to the apparent lack of support from the

superintendent, the issue of center funding was clouded

further since the legislation that established centers was

being reexamined. Members noted that with such uncertainties

the work of the council was much more difficult.

Attending the February meeting as guests were several

faculty members from the college of education. They were

invited to continue the discussion about the center's involve-

ment in preservice teacher education. Members of the council

divided into small groups with a college faculty member in

each group. Issues raised in the work groups included the

following. What is the present situation in preservice

teacher training? What should be done? What have been some

successes? What are the current needs from the college point

of view? From the center's point of view? What resources

are needed to meet these needs?

Following the discussion of preservice teacher training,

the director presented a possible strategy for assessing

teacher training needs. The director emphasized the import-

ance of developing and implementing a method for assessment,

since future program planning would be based on the results.

A careful consideration of the proposed assessment strategy

was not forthcoming due to the weight of concerns heard by

council members earlier in the meeting. The problems of

establishing a thorough and systematic means for assessing

teacher training needs persisted without apt attention.

The March Meeting

The March meeting opened with the superintendent

presenting his views directly to council members on the role

of the center council and staff for the center's operation.

He expressed concern about the amount of money being spent

on staff rather than training programs. He suggested that

the coordination of the center could be assumed by a county

staff person as part of their responsibility, and that two

full time staff members were not necessary for center

operation. Contrary to the superintendent's views, council

members argued for keeping at least a full-time director

for the center. The council agreed to develop a list of

vital staff functiorsperformed by the director, and the

superintendent consented to review the list before making

his final decision. While the superintendent was citing a

reduced budget for the next school year as a reason for

cutting staff, some council members felt that he was showing

lack of support for the current center director and resource

teacher. Later in the year, the director would be replaced,

and the position of resource teacher would be dropped from

the budget.

During the March meeting considerable time was spent

discussing training programs to be offered during the summer.

Plans had to be made early so that teachers would be aware

of training opportunities.

The April Meeting

This month's meeting provided some relief from the

bad news the council had been receiving. A letter from the

Commissioner of Education in Tallahassee was presented com-

mending the center for its programs. The superintendent

announced that after considering the council's report on

center staff functions, he agreed that a full-time director

was necessary. He was, however, dropping the resource

teacher from next year's budget.

The issue of assessing teacher training needs brought

up in previous meetings was once again considered. No

comprehensive system was identified, but center staff reported

on a variety of activities to gain information about

teacher training needs. Needs assessment interviews had

been conducted in two schools on an experimental basis.

Meetings were held with elementary school personnel about

training programs for the next year. Forms for requesting

funds from the center to participate in training programs

or attend conferences were distributed to the schools.

Meetings with middle school and secondary school personnel

were planned by staff, and letters were sent to those

schools so that training needs could be discussed among

school personnel prior to the meeting with center staff.

In an effort to facilitate future planning and to

achieve some end of the year closure, the director established

committees to deal with the following topics:

the role and selection of contact teachers for the
next school year,

priorities for center training programs and budget

revision of working policy and committee organization,

the role of the council in the selection of a new

The May Meeting

Additional planning work faced the council as the end

of the school year drew near. In response, the council

extended its normal afternoon session to include an evening


The May meeting began with council members divided into

committees as established at the April meeting. Each

committee was to focus its attention on planning for the

next school year.

The committee on the role and selection of contact

teachers reported the following recommendations:

contact teachers should be selected during preplanning

bimonthly meetings of contact teachers should be
scheduled and those attending should be paid a stipend,

a school site system of peer evaluation should be
devised to ensure that contact teachers are doing their

contact teachers should report on teacher center
activities at each school site,

more face-to-face communication among contact teachers
should take place through meetings, social gatherings,
and informal conversations.

The recommendations of the committee were accepted by the

council and implementation was urged for the next school


The committee on priorities and budget guidelines

recommended a formula for the allocation of funds in three

categories: individual requests, school-based programs,

and district level requests. The committee noted that

training priorities were needed to give meaningful direction

to the distribution of funds. The committee's report

generated considerable discussion, which was carried over

into the June meeting.

The committee of policy revision reported no recommended

changes in the center's policy as approved earlier by the

local school board. The committee did suggest ttat a

committee should be formed to help the incoming director,

especially in the area of funding review.

With the directorship of the center open for next year,

the committee on staff appointment received close attention.

Several council members were applying for the position of

director. The council agreed that it should not be the

interviewing body, although it was charged by the enabling

legislation with recommending to the school board the employ-

ment of a director. The appointment of the director sub-

sequently went through established hiring procedures of the

school district, with minimal input from two council members.

The May meeting continued with an evening session

during which the following issues were discussed.

whether teachers should receive stipends for attending
workshops held after school or on the weekends,

the questionable usefulness of problem solving
workshops for teachers,

the lack of receptivity of the survey of needs assess-
ment by teachers,

mandated district-wide inservice reading programs,

the expressed preference of teachers toward using
other teachers as workshop leaders rather than college
faculty or outside consultants.

The June Meeting

At the June meeting the new director, a former class-

room teacher, assumed staff responsibility for the council.

The council agreed that some informal meetings could take

place over the summer, especially a committee of the

council that would aid in the transition of directors.

The discussion of budget guidelines continued from the

May meeting, and was the only major item of business. The

council accepted the committee's recommendation to distribute

money according to the following categories:

50 percent for the school-based projects with approved

40 percent to district-wide projects sponsored by the
teacher center,

10 percent for individual projects not associated with
the above categories.

The funding plan that allocated 50 percent of the

center's funds for school-based staff development was con-

sistent with the wishes of the district superintendent.

However, the council felt it important that schools have a

careful plan for inservice work before they received funds

from the center. Otherwise funds for inservice education

could be misappropriated within the school. Other budget

related issues discussed at the last meeting included who

would receive and approve school plans for staff development,

and when schools would be informed about the new plan for

school-based staff development.


By following the issues faced by a center council

during its first year of operation, a more detailed expres-

sion of problems of implementation has been provided.

The problems encountered by this center shared several

themes with the problems experienced by centers across the

state. Those problems included the following: (1) an

uncertain beginning with the council unsure of its role

and function, (2) problems of communication between the

center and classroom teachers, (3) a relationship between

the center council and the host school district in which

the host district held the ultimate authority, (4) the

problems of allocating scarce university resources, and

(5) the absence of an adequate means of assessing teacher

training needs.


Several sets of factors affected center implementation

in Florida. Some factors were specific to the design and

internal operations of teacher centers while others were

external to the operations of the center. However, in the

research on organizational change in education, a model or

theoretical framework is lacking that interprets organiza-

tional change in relation to interrelated internal and

external factors that influence change.

The present chapter has two sections. The first is

an account of the current research on organizational change

in education that discussed two major weaknesses in that

research. The second section proposes an alternative to

the traditional theoretical approach to interpreting

educational change, an approach based on Malinowski's

functional theory of institutions.

An Overview of the Research

The American Educational Research Association has

published the most complete review to date of the research

on organizational change in education, done by Joseph

Giacquinta (1973). After reviewing 107 sources on that topic,

Giacquinta (1973, p. 179) concluded that "the literature is

basically theoretical in nature." That is, he found little

research designed to develop and/or test theories of organi-

zational change. According to Giacquinta (p. 178), most of

the literature on organizational change in education has

been the result of theoreticall efforts to make change, not

efforts to test theories of change." His conclusion reemphasized

an earlier review of the research done by Gross, Giacquinta,

and Bernstein (1971, p. 35). As reported by Giacquinta, his

review findings also concur with those of Sieber (1967).

To counter this lack of theory, Giacquinta offers in

his own work only "several postulates" about organizational

change, rather than a comprehensive theory of institutions

and institutional change. His three postulates are as


Organizational change, when successfully completed,
proceeds in three distinct stages: initiation,
implementation, and incorporation. Successful
completion of one stage, however, does not guarantee
successful completion of the next. (p. 200)

These stages are influenced by attributes of the
innovations that are introduced, the manner of their
introductions, characteristics of the school personnel
who must make the changes, and structural properties
of the school setting. (p. 200)

These factors do not influence initiation completely
in the same way they influence implementation or
incorporation. (p. 200)

If a student were to heed the advice of Giacquinta, studies

would focus on the stages through which an innovation is

accepted or rejected and the attributes of the innovation

and organization into which the innovation is introduced.

The question remains as to whether these postulates are

comprehensive enough for a theory or interpretive frame-

work for understanding organizational change.

Although Giacquinta's review does not lead to a satis-

factory theoretical framework, it does illustrate an addi-

tional weakness in the conceptualization of research on

organizational change in education. Giacquinta found that

the research fell into five categories.

The effects that that the attributes of an innovation
have on its acceptability, e.g., the innovations
cost, its divisibilityy," and its material form
(Miles, 1964); four studies were reported in this
category. (pp. 181-83)

The effects of various strategies used to introduce the
innovation, e.g., the role of the change agent (Bennis,
Benne, and Chin, 1969); twenty-eight studies were
reported in this category. (pp. 183-85)

The effects of participation in decision-making by
organization re-bers, e.g., the effectiveness of
introducing change using strategies of participation
as compared to introducing change from the top by super-
ordinates (Coch and French, 1948); sixteen studies
were reported in this category. (pp. 185-89)

The effects of personal characteristics of organi-
zation members on change, e.g., the resistance of
organization zezbers to change (Morris and Binstock,
1966); twenty-four studies were reported in this
category. (pp. 189-94)

The effects on change of the properties of the school
as a special type of organization, e.g., the values of
educational personnel and the diffuseness of educational
goals (Sieber, 1968); five studies were reported in this
category. (pp. 194-97)

Accordingly, most educational research studies have dealth

with the effects on organizational change of factors that

are internal* to the organization itself. The effects of

factors external to the organization are largely ignored

in the education research literature.

The education studies that do consider external factors

tend to be the exception. In their book on organizational

change in education Gross, Giacquinta and Bernstein (1971)

report on external factors, but fail to account carefully

for their influence on change in the conclusions drawn from

the study. A study of the antecedents of organizational

change by Greiner (1967) accounts for external pressures

affecting change and internal tensions promoting change.

A study by House (1974) also recognizes the importance of

external factors, as does a recent study by the Rand

Corporation (1975).

A search through the Comprehensive Dissertation Index,

1863-1972 revealed a similar pattern in dissertation research.

Of the 180 studies cited on educational innovations) and

organizational change in education in that index, only

five studies dealt with the effects of external factors on

* For the purposes of this study, internal factors are
considered to be those variables associated with the struc-
ture of the organization, its activities, the character-
istics of its members, the codes of behavior, thought, and
value shared by its members, and the properties of the
innovation itself. External factors are considered to be
those variables that operate outside the organization under
study that may influence the rate or nature of change
within the organization.


educational change (Burnham, 1972; Christe, 1970; Joyner,

1969; Peterson, 1969; Zeitlin, 1958).

As shown, there is a general, though not complete,

neglect in education research of the role of external factors

in interpreting organizational change. This neglect exists

despite the prevailing knowledge of educational sociology,

anthropology, and history, that factors external to schools

have a fundamental impact on what happens in school. For

examples of this point see Fisher (1972), Kimball (1974), and

Cremin (1955). However, the prevailing habits of education

research on organizational change would have a student seek to

understand the problems of organizational change in relation

to the internal characteristics of the organizations) and

the strategies and attributes of the innovation itself.

Giacquinta's prescribed postulates typify this approach.

.While the education literature on organizational change

tends to focus on internal variables to the exclusion of

external variables, the anthropological literature on this

topic to date has focused on the external to the exclusion

of the internal. Despite the growth of the research in

anthropology and education, the anthropological literature

on educational change is sparse. A search through the past

ten years of Abstracts in Anthropology revealed less than a

dozen studies on educational change. Those studies focused

exclusively on the influence of factors external to educa-

tional organizations undergoing change. For examples see

Kandizoti (1974), Britton (1973), Levin (1974), Rosenteil

(1971), and Lopate (1974). Of the 683 annotated sources cited

in Anthropology and Education: An Annotated Bibliographic

Guide (Burnett, et al., 1974), only seventeen dealt with

organizational change in education, examples include Brameld

(1968), Epstein (1968), Kimball (1968), Read (1955) and

Wallace (1972). With the exception of the studies by

Musgrove (1968) and Gallaher (1973), those studies also

focused on the role of external factors as they influenced the

change process in schools.

Neither the educational literature, nor the anthropologi-

cal literature on educational change, provides a theoretical

or interpretive framework that interrelates internal and

external variables in interpreting organizational change in


The preceding overview of research has established two

important points. On the authority of Joseph Giacquinta and

the American Educational Research Association, education

research on organizational change lacks a needed theoretical

or interpretive framework. Additionally, an interpretive

framework that interrelates the influence of external and

internal factors into an understanding of organizational change

is absent from the education and anthropological literature.

To gain a deeper insight into the implementation of

Florida's teacher education centers, and to explore the use

of an interpretive framework in understanding organizational

change in education, the author sought to identify a theory

of organizations or institutions that would effectively inter-

relate external and internal factors in the interpretation of

organizational change. Malinowski's functional theory of

institutions was identified as having a potential for such

an application. His theory of institutions was adopted as

a possible interpretive framework. It was applied to an

interpretation of the implementation problems experienced

by Florida teacher centers to explore its usefulness. Its

explanatory power is not tested against alternative theories

of institutions or organizations. Neither is it prescribed

as the best or only interpretive framework for understanding

organizational change. It does seem to have considerable

value, however, in developing a broad and comprehensive under-

standing of the problems of organizational change identified

in previous chapters as implementation problems.

Malinkowski's Functional Theory of Institutions

Writing in the International Encyclopedia of the Social

Sciences, Rhoda Metraux (196S), p. 541) states that the work

of Bronislaw Malinowski has played a decisive part in the

formulation of contemporary social anthropology. More

specifically Malinowski is regarded as the founder of modern

functionalism in anthropology (Metraux, 1968, p. 541;

Bohannon and Glazer, 1973, p. 274; Kardiner and Preble, 1961,

p. 156). Audrey I. Richards (1957, p. 24) credits Malinowski's

functional theory of institutions as his most enduring con-

tribution to the theory and methods of social anthropology.

Since an understanding of the tenets of Malinowski's functional

theory of institutions is basic to the objective of this

dissertation, they are discussed here.

The concept of "institution" lies at the heart of

Malinowski's analysis of culture. For Malinowski (1960,

p. 49), "the best description of any culture in terms of

concrete reality would consist in the listing and analysis

of all the institutions into which that culture is organized."

He further states:

I would challenge anyone to mention any object,
activity, or symbol, or type of organization, which
could not be placed within one institution or other
although some objects belong to several institutions,
playing specific parts in each. (1960, 161)

Malinowski views institutions as "definite groups of men

united by a charter, following rules of conduct, operating

together a shaped portion of the environment, and working

for the satisfaction of definite needs." (Malinowski, 1973,

p. 291)

Malinowski describes his functional theory of insti-

tutions in several places (e.g. Malinowski, 1931; 1939;

1941-42; 1944; 1960; 1973). Essentially, his theory includes

two propositions: institutions are derived from individual and

group needs, and institutions are interrelated within an

integral culture. According to Malinowski (1973, p. 292),

"Every institution contributes, on the one hand toward the inte-

gral working of the community as a whole, but it also satisfies

the derived and basic needs of the individual." While

Malinowski views institutions as interrelated, his emphasis

on the necessary connection of institutions to the satisfaction

of human needs separates his functional theories from those

being developed at the same time by Radcliffe-Brown. According

to Radcliffe-Brown, as reprinted in Bohannan and Glazer (1973):

The function of any recurrent activity, such as the
punishment of a crime, or a funeral ceremony, is the
part it plays in the social life as a whole and
therefore the contribution it makes to the maintenance
of the structural continuity. (p. 298)

The notion of function is different for Malinowski (1960,

p. 159):

Functionalism would not be so functional after all,
unless it could define the concept of function not
merely by such glib expressions as 'the contribution
which a partial activity makes to the total activity
of which it is a part,' but by a much more definite
and concrete reference to what actually occurs and
what can be observed. . such a definition is
provided by showing that human institutions, as well
as partial activities with these, are related to primary,

that is, biological, or derived, that is, cultural
needs. Function reans, therefore, always the satis-
faction of a need.

Malinowski's proposition that institutions are derived

from individual and group needs is described in his 1939

article, "The Group and Individual in Functional Analysis,"

reprinted in Bohannan and Glazer (1973, pp. 272-96). Therein,

Malinowski claims that can has basic needs -- food, shelter,

safety, reproduction, movement/relaxation, and bodily comforts --

that are expressed in drives, desires or emotions which move

the organism to the satisfaction of those needs (p. 278).

Moreover, a culture's institutions regulate and coordinate

human activity toward the meeting of those needs.

Culture thus appears first and foremost as a vast
instrumental reality -- the body of implements and
commodities, charters of social organizations, ideas
and customs, beliefs and values -- all of which allow
man to satisfy his biological requirements through
co-operation and within an environment refashioned
and readjusted. (p. 280)

Malinowski goes on to propose three levels of needs; basic

needs associated with fundamental biological requirements,

instrumental or derived needs associated with the necessity

to organize systems of cooperation required in meeting basic

needs and symbolic or integrative needs associated with

systems of knowledge and value that legitimatize cooperative

efforts in meeting instrumental needs. In effect, these

levels of needs build on one another, suggesting that all

institutions serve need-meeting functions and that institutions

are interrealted within and across levels.

In assessing Malinowski's contribution to anthropological

theory, Audrey I. Richards (1957, p. 24) says that Malinowski's

division of needs into three orders has not been productive

in subsequent research, either theoretically or methodologically

but that Malinowski's concept of the institution as derived

from his needs approach has "proven an exceedingly useful tool

for collecting and analyzing data." Malinowski's detractor-

have the same praise. Amidst a severe criticism of Malinowski,

Max Gluckman (1949, p. 24) claims that Malinowski's functional

theory of institutions represents a significant and lasting

contribution to social anthropology.

Functionalism has been criticized as being conservative

and teleological and that criticism holds true for certain

fundamental tenets of functionalism as a social theory.

Radcliffe-Brown, more than Malinowski, was responsible for

the proposition that every part of a society is inter-locked

and interconnected, directly or indirectly, with every other

part. The mechanistic metaphor of Radcliffe-Brown focused

the attention of anthropologists on what was perceived as

the unchanging underlay of society. The conservative aspect

of functionalism is compounded by its teleological dimension

that contends the function of a particular social activity or

institution is to perpetuate itself and society.

The criticisms of functionalism have largely been aimed

at functionalism as social theory, not as a method of investi-

gation. A severe critic of functionalist social thought,

I.C. Jarvie, makes this distinction in his article "Limits

to Functionalism and Alternatives to It in Anthropology"

(1965). Jarvie argues that there exists enough evidence

to abandon functionalism as a social theory. However, he

contends that the method of investigation associated with a

functionalist approach that seeks to examine how social

groups interrelate and the social uses of a society's material

environment is worthy of continued application. Malinowski's

functional theory of institutions provides a possible theoretical

or interpretive framework for research on educational organi-

zations. It highlights the necessity of interpreting organi-

zational change in terms of internal and external factors,

i.e., how a particular institution works to satisfy the needs

of its members and at the same time relates to other institutions.

In this study, school districts, organized teacher groups,

and colleges of education are considered to be institutions,

and the economic, political, and educational needs of these

institutions become major units of analysis. The concept of

"needs" can be ambiguous. Here needs are taken to be the

desires and interests of individuals and groups that form

institutions. For example, when a teachers' union fights

hard in negotiations with a local school board, the union

is expressing its economic and political interests in

bargaining for higher salaries and better working conditions

for its members. When a school board insists that its rules

be obeyed by school personnel and students, the board's

demands are expressions of its political interests, or need

to coordinate behavior within the institutions.

Malinowski's functional theory of institutions prescribes

two fundamental questions for any analysis of institutional

change: How does an institutional change reflect or express

changes in individual or group needs? How does a change in

one institution relate to changes in other institutions?

Clearly the answers to these questions require a consideration

of factors that are internal and external to the organizations)

under study. Answering those very questions comprises the

basic thrust of the work that follows.


The interpretive framework adopted here takes as its

major task the examination of organizational change in rela-

tion to internal and external factors that affect change.

Specifically, the requirements of this approach are to inter-

pret the problems of teacher center implementation by showing

the influence of internal and external factors on desired

organizational changes: a particularly important element in

this interpretation is the affect of institutional interests

on change.

Internal and External Factors

Internal factors that have been identified as influencing

organizational change during the implementation of Florida's

teacher centers include the following:

the distribution of authority within the center,
an imbalance in the financial base for center operation,
the effects of traditional role expectations and job
descriptions on center participants,
the relative attractiveness of centers, based on the
financial incentives for starting a center,
the lack of needed technology and social relations
for a sound assessment of teacher training needs.

External factors included the following:

the interests of state-level educational organizations,
the advent of professional teacher organizations in
the state,

a depressed state economy that affected school revenues,
a changing demography and teacher supply.

The above internal and external factors were interrelated

in their effects on change, and are discussed here in their

interrelated contexts, rather than singled out for individual


Starting a Center: New Groups and Expressions of Power

The problems of hurried planning to meet state-imposed

deadlines have already been identified. In the rush to

meet deadlines, letters of intent were prepared and center

proposals were written without the full participation of all

groups. In one case, teachers were not included at all,

and the center proposal was developed without their knowledge.

In another center, teachers were included only to read and

sign the proposal. In such cases where teachers were not

included, or included only in a limited way in planning

efforts, this amounted to the first expression that teachers

were to be junior, not full, partners in teacher centers.

In most cases, the plans to start a center were initiated

in the school district office, and the design for center

operation was to keep control of the center located in that


In addition to hurried planning, the ambiguities faced

by those managing centers led to another consequence that

affected center implementation. At a state-wide conference

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