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Empowerment or prescription? Workforce remodelling at the national and school level

Hammersley-Fletcher, Linda and Adnett, Nick (2009) Empowerment or prescription? Workforce remodelling at the national and school level. Educational Management Administration & Leadership, 37 (2). pp. 180-197. ISSN 1741-1432

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Abstract

Workforce Remodelling in England implemented between 2003 and 2005 has been presented by the `New Labour' government as a means of enhancing the development of teachers and promoting rising educational attainments. While the processes that schools were to follow to achieve the desired `fundamental alteration in mindset' were prescribed, the outcomes of this process were less so. Conceptually therefore this initiative could potentially be viewed as having more in common with policies seeking to empower schools, rather than the performance management ethos of the dominant market-based approach to reforming English state schooling. This tension created within national policy is reflected in the research reported below which demonstrates that while in some schools Workforce Remodelling has largely taken the form of a centralized reallocation of tasks along lines favoured by the government, in others a more delegated style of leadership has encouraged and enabled redefinitions of roles and opened up fundamental debates about current practice. We find that both intended and unintended outcomes were shaped by the processes adopted in schools to respond to the remodelling agenda.

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