Implementing state standards for science education: What district policy makers make of the Hoopla

James P Spillane*, Karen A. Callahan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

60 Scopus citations

Abstract

Premised on the assumption that school districts play an important role in the implementation of state and federal policy, this article explores the districts' response to state science standards. Adopting a cognitive perspective on the implementation process, the authors examine the ideas about science education that district policy makers construct from science standards. Our analysis illuminates how the ideas about reforming science education that district policy makers come to understand from new science standards contribute to these standards being adapted at the district level in ways that miss or misrepresent their core intent. The article identifies prominent patterns in district policy makers' understandings of the science reforms. Based on this analysis, the authors argue that a cause of implementation failure, rarely examined in the literature, concerns the ways in which local implementers miss or misconstrue the intent of policy proposals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)401-425
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Research in Science Teaching
Volume37
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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