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TAMAM IN OMAN: BOTTOM-UP EDUCATIONAL CHANGE IN ARAB SCHOOLS

A. Albulushi, A. Ambusaidi

Sultan Qaboos University (OMAN)
Schools encounter educational problems all the time regardless of their characteristics. Centrally run schools heavily depend on the directions received from the top to embark change. In such systems, change is felt by the top but executed by the school. TAMAM project is a collaborative school-based educational reform project involving schools in the Arab World that initiates bottom-up school change with top-down support. The acronym originates from the Arabic word TAMAM that stands for school-based development. TAMAM presents a new paradigm for school reform. It also aims at building a community of practice connecting schools, universities, and ministries of education.

The project started with Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and Jordan participating with three schools each. Oman has been taking part in the project since the inception of the second stage with three schools too. Qatar and Egypt took part too in this stage. However, the Sultanate is progressing more steadily in achieving the requirements of the project compared to the other countries.

This paper aims to present the experience that the Omani schools went through in this project. The goals, the different stages the schools went through, the action research projects of each school, and the status qua of each of them will be outlined. Furthermore, it qualitatively presents the reflections of the Omani teachers whilst reforming their schools using action research. The transformation of their thinking in instructional and professional practice, the lessons learnt, challenges, and the reflections of the university supervisors would be highlighted.