15 SES 07, School Networks, Knowledge Circulation and Educational Change. Insights from current school networks across Europe
Decentralization and autonomy policies have been stimulating reconfigurations in the organization and management of schools in most education systems in the last three decades. Those changes favor the emergence of new forms of regulation from different scales and multiple actors (Barroso, 2005), including interorganizational networks between schools and between schools and other organizations, like universities and municipalities. Such networks are being conceptualized as a new voluntary mode of regulation (Justino & Batista, 2013), based on horizontal and intended relationships and joint actions in order to achieve common goals, which ultimately condition or influence schools’ practices and results.
School networks can bring changes in education and in schools because they provide the perfect conditions for the creation of knowledge and shared practices by and among schools, other organizations and educational professionals (Veugelers & O’Hair, 2005). Discussions between actors within networks allow for new ideas, tools and practices to be created and disseminated through the transformation of the initial knowledge and the combination of different sources and types of knowledge (Delvaux, 2009). All of this “new knowledge” created and shared within school networks is likely to influence educational practices. Consequently and as observed in other fields, networks in education are gathering not only researchers’ interests, but also the one of political stakeholders. International organizations, like the OECD or the European Commission, are mindful to this reality and conducted recent studies on it, emphasizing their governance purposes (EU, 2017) or their potential in innovative pedagogies (OECD, 2018).
However, as argued by Ávila (2016), the promotion of educational networks as a solution to some long-lasting problems should not ignore that there is a belief embedded in current thinking about schools networks which states that they are in fact educational communities that produce effective changes and improvements. As actors may be mobilizing knowledge diversely within different schools and in schools, it is relevant to explore its appropriation process and if it leads to real changes in educational practices or results.
In this symposium, the discussion will focus on the practices of professionals involved in school networks of three European countries, and about the differences between those networks with diverse goals, protagonists and contexts. The discussion will take into account the different national perspectives to address tensions and challenges deriving from the national background to get or to disengage actors from several institutions to organize themselves to create school networks. This session seeks to provide insights from school networks considering the impact of school networks in school organization. These are some of the questions we are interested in sharing and debating: Whether and how the work and knowledge produced in the scope of school networks lead to effective changes in educational practices? In what areas? What are the main challenges? Do school networks capacitate school actors to build local know-how and improve practices and/ or school’s results?
Barroso, J. (2005). O Estado, a educação e a regulação das políticas públicas. Educação & Sociedade, 26(92), 725-751. Delvaux, B. (2009). Qual é o papel do conhecimento na ação pública? Educação & Sociedade, 30(109), 959-985. EU (2017). Study on governance and management policies in school education systems. Luxembourg, Publications Office of the European Union. Justino, D.; Batista, S. (2013). Redes de escolas e modos de regulação do sistema educativo. Educação, Temas e Problemas. A escola em análise: olhares sociopolíticos e organizacionais, 6 (12-13), 41-60. Lima, J. Á. (2016). Action and Structure in School Networks. In Gonçalves, E., & Batista, S. (Eds.) (2016). Networks, Communities and Partnerships in Education: actors, goals and results. Proceedings of the First International Conference of the ESCXEL Project (55-66). Lisbon, ESCXEL Project - School Network for Excellence. OECD (2018). Innovative Pedagogies for Powerful Learning – Networks. http://www.oecd.org/edu/ceri/innovative-pedagogies-for-powerful-learning-networks.htm Veugelers, W. & O’Hair, M. J. (2005). Networking Learning for Educational Change. Maidenhead, Open University Press.
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
Network 8. Research on Health Education
Network 9. Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Network 10. Teacher Education Research
Network 11. Educational Effectiveness and Quality Assurance
Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
Network 13. Philosophy of Education
Network 14. Communities, Families and Schooling in Educational Research
Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
Network 16. ICT in Education and Training
Network 17. Histories of Education
Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
Network 19. Ethnography
Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
Network 22. Research in Higher Education
Network 23. Policy Studies and Politics of Education
Network 24. Mathematics Education Research
Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
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