23 SES 11 A, Exploring Diversity of Accountability Policies Across Education Areas
Adopting a general theoretical framework based on cognitive and neo-institutionalist approaches of education policies, this paper compares the trajectories of accountability policies in education in France and in Quebec. Empirical data is drawn from an on-going international research project (NewAGE) comparing accountability policies in France and Quebec. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with national policy makers. Legal documents, Parliamentary debates, press releases, scientific, professional and institutional literatures were also analysed. The paper argues that the progressive implementation of these policies over time led to a new growing and extended State power on policy instruments and education systems. These growth and extension take various forms in the two countries. In France, the “outcomes-based steering’ was mainly supported by high civil servants and State professionals who used it to reassert their central and dominant position in the policy process and it is mainly thought as a government-based and oriented accountability. In Quebec, the “results-based management” progressively followed a neostatist variant mainly because of a tacit and silent agreement among key policy actors to avoid a neoliberal approach of the New public management. In both cases, accountability measures led to a renewed vertical bureaucratisation of the education system.
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