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Japanese educational administration and school management

Number 1. Feb. 2006

from Editor

On the Japanese Educational Administration and School Management (Aim and abstract of the paper)

-Tetsuya Kajisa, Professor of Educational Administration

Educational administration and school management in Japan is undergoing dramatic reorganization. One aspect of the reorganization is the decentralization of educational administration and finance authorities from central government to local government. Another is the participation of the private sector in public school education, the deregulation of school management, namely autonomic school management, and the establishment of open schools to the parents and local communities, based on New Public Management (NPM). These trends are currently occurring in most advanced countries.

Our Educational Administration Course has conducted researches clarifying empirically the method of promoting the reorganization and the accompanying issues. I selected the following four papers from among these many researches.

The first paper examines the method of establishing a network integrating various educational opportunities for truant students. Truancy has attracted attention in recent years and is, in a sense, a phenomenon of dissociation from the single-track educational system. The associations and groups working on truancy vary in their educational concept, organizational form, educational method, etc. It is therefore difficult to establish a network integrating all these organizations. This study conducted research to form a network among the various educational opportunities and clarified the necessary conditions for establishing the network.

The second paper acknowledges the necessity for a "Charter School" in Japan, the like of which has been promoted in the United States, and examines a possible form of a "Japanese Charter School" based on survey researches in Japan. To be more specific, the paper proposes (1) the form of foundation (who founds and which organization approves), (2) the criteria and method of approval and revocation, (3) the content of education, (4) selecting teachers and staff, and (5) public aid.

The third paper examines the risk management of schools in the background of crimes and cases with child victims in schools. It points out that risk management should be addressed appropriately in the course of the organizational administration of schools. It also stresses that the risk management should be pursued paying full respect to the particular characteristics and concepts of each school.

The fourth paper investigates trends in the recent teacher evaluation system in Japan and identifies implications and problems of the teacher evaluation system based on the preceding researches and interviews. Taking these points into account, the author conducted an attitude survey on school managers and teachers in a certain local community, and examined the form of effective teacher evaluation systems. The paper discusses, based on the survey results, which evaluation elements are adequate for teachers, which evaluation method is appropriate for teachers, and which abilities the graders should have.

The above four papers treat practical issues such as truancy, new types of schools, risk management in schools, and teacher evaluation, and provide directions for promoting the systems and solving the issues.

The Educational Administration Course was reorganized this fiscal year to the "School Leader Course". The School Leader Course aims to foster school managers such as principals and experts on educational administration such as education supervisors, and intends to shift in the near future to a teacher-training graduate school as one type of the professional schools. In the school, practical researches will be further promoted to contribute to improving school management and educational administration and to solving various problems, and the power of school leaders necessary for the improvement and the problem solving will be explored.

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