SCHOOLS TODAY AND IN THE FUTURE – TEACHERS’ AND SCHOOL ADMINISTRATIVE PERSONNEL’S VIEWS OF MUNICIPAL SCHOOLS
The changing society sets learning environments, schools and teachers challenges which require transforming the operational culture and broadening the way that learning environment is seen and understood. Change in the operational culture requires, above all, the teachers to function and network in a new way, but it also requires the school administrative personnel a new kind of understanding and internalization of learning environments and pedagogy, so that people promoting the development of teaching will develop the school in the same direction, from the point of view of skills of the 21st century.
This study is part of the three-year (2012-2014) one national K-opeGo education study which with the help of a long lasting in-service teacher training program concentrates on developing teachers' pedagogical skills and working methods based on transformational pedagogy and learning environments. The study is a commissioned research for one Finnish medium size city, which is intended to be utilized in renovating the new schools. The aim is to involve teachers as effectively and as appropriately as possible in the planning and introduction of the new learning environment.
The framework for the study is created by the Q.E.D –model (Transformational change model for schools) which expresses the change in the school from the traditional model towards the transformational model together with the skills of the 21st Century. The Contextual – pedagogical model which was created alongside the education study is presented in the article in the way that the context of the surrounding society for the learning is clearly expressed. The data reported in this article encompasses teachers and municipal officials as well as councilmen, whose views of the function of the municipal school system are being compared.
The research result shows that the responses of teachers and administrative personnel are mainly in line with each other, with no great differences between respondent groups. This shows that views about the state of municipal schools are rather similar within large groups. However, according to results, there was also dispersion in each group so that in almost every question there were responses in both extremities of the scale. This shows that within a municipality, there are divergent views, which should be discussed in order to find joint guidelines.