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Educational policy analysis archives.
n Vol. 8, no. 4 (January 07, 2000).
Tempe, Ariz. :
b Arizona State University ;
Tampa, Fla. :
University of South Florida.
c January 07, 2000
Technology and school reform : a view from both sides of the tracks / Mark Warschauer.
Arizona State University.
University of South Florida.
t Education Policy Analysis Archives (EPAA)
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1 of 22 Education Policy Analysis Archives Volume 8 Number 4January 7, 2000ISSN 1068-2341 A peer-reviewed scholarly electronic journal Editor: Gene V Glass, College of Education Arizona State University Copyright 2000, the EDUCATION POLICY ANALYSIS ARCHIVES. Permission is hereby granted to copy any article if EPAA is credited and copies are not sold. Articles appearing in EPAA are abstracted in the Current Index to Journals in Education by the ERIC Clearinghouse on Assessment and Evaluation and are permanently archived in Resources in Education Technology and School Reform: A View from Both Sides of the Tracks Mark Warschauer America-Mideast Educational & Training Services Cairo, EgyptAbstractA discourse of reform claims that schools must be t ransformed to take full advantage of computers, while a competing disc ourse of inequality warns that technology-enhanced reform is taking pla ce only in wealthy schools, dooming poor and minority students to the wrong side of a digital divide. A qualitative study at an elite pri vate school and an impoverished public school explored the relationshi p between technology, reform, and equality. The reforms intro duced at the two schools appeared similar, but underlying difference s in resources and expectations served to reinforce patterns by which the two schools channel students into different social futures. As educators cope with the task of inte grating information technology into the schools, two main discourses have appeared: the dis course of reform and the discourse of inequality. The discourse of reform suggests tha t schools must transform themselves in order to make effective use of computers. As an educator in Hawai'i (Note 1) commented, The analogy that I have to give is that there is te levision and there is radio
2 of 22and there is in person. And you would never take a radio program and try to put it on television and expect it to work without modifying for the media. And what we've done is we've taken education curric ulum that is a person-to-person curriculum and tried to put it on this medium called the Internet and that doesn't work. And so one of the t hings we're doing...is trying to work with teachers and with students to s ay, "What is the appropriate use of the Internet" you know, if it's not to just recreate school as we think school is, how do you do it? The discourse of reform draws on resear ch from both education (e.g., Cuban, 1986; Sandholtz, Ringstaff, & Dwyer, 1997; Warschau er, 1998, 1999) and industry (e.g., Kling & Zmuidzinas, 1994; Zuboff, 1988) demonstrati ng that the infusion of new technologies produces little results if underlying relations do not change. The root of the problem is seen in the mismatch between industrial models of schooling and postindustrial organization of society (Cummins & Sayer s, 1990; Hodas, 1993; Lemke, 1998); the solution is seen not just in the diffusi on of technology in the schools, but rather through creating new models of interactive, autonomous, student-centered learning which allow students to use technology in a process of critical collaborative inquiry (Cummins & Sayers, 1995). As Sandholtz, Rin gstaff, and Dwyer (1997) explain, "the benefits of technology integration are best re alized when learning is not just the process of transferring facts from one person to an other, but when the teacher's goal is to empower students as thinkers and problem solvers" ( p. 176). Though the model of a learner-centered environment is not new, it is believed that technology provides the impetus which will fin ally allow this dream to be realized. According to one optimistic (but not atypical) pred iction, the introduction of more computers in the schools will help bring about eigh t major shifts in education, including changes from "whole class to small group instructio n," "from lecture and recitation to coaching", "from a competitive to a cooperative soc ial structure", and "from all students learning the same things to different students lear ning different things" (Starr, 1996, n.p.) While the discourse of reform is hopefu l, the discourse of inequality is troubling. From this perspective, increased use of technology in the schools is bound to heighten distinctions among students based on class, languag e, and race. As a teacher in Hawai'i explained, The problem that I see with this change is it's goi ng to create two classes of schools: those schools that can afford the technolo gy and those schools cannot afford the technology. And the rich schools will get richer and we're going to create a greater divergence between our be st educated students and our poorest educated students. You cannot change it now. It's out of the box, and it's just going to get bigger and bigger and bi gger. The discourse of inequality draws on it s own body of research demonstrating that low-income and minority students either have less a ccess to new technologies or are more likely to use them for rote learning activitie s rather than for cognitively demanding activity (Market Data Retrieval, 1997; Novak, Hoffm an, & Project 2000 Vanderbilt University, 1998; Wenglinsky, 1998) Inequality fall s in at least three areas: Home access : Wealthy families are seven times as likely as poo r families to own a
3 of 22home computer, and white families are more than twi ce as likely as Black families to own one. The percentage gap in both of these are as increased from 1994-1997. Black and Hispanic families trail (non-Hispanic) wh ite families in computer ownership by a substantial margin even within the s ame income groups(Novak, et al., 1998). School access : More than 78% of public schools in lowpoverty c ommunities had Internet access in 1997 compared to less than 59% o f public schools in communities with high poverty rates. And public sch ools with over 50% minority enrollments had an average of 8.4 students per comp uter, while schools with fewer than 5% minority enrollment had 6.6 computers per student (Market Data Retrieval, 1997). Use within schools: African-American students and Hispanic students ar e more likely to use computers for drill and practice, whe reas white and Asian students are more likely to use them for simulations or appl ications; the same differences appear between poor students and wealthier students (Wenglinsky, 1998). Putting the discourses of reform and in equality together, two scenarios emerge. The dream scenario is that the information age will help bring about the kinds of educational change that reformers have pushed for a ll century, with schools becoming sites of critical collaborative inquiry and autonom ous constructivist learning as individuals and groups work with new technologies t o solve authentic problems under the guidance of a facilitative teacher (see, for ex ample, Lemke, 1998). The nightmare scenario is that this type of educational transform ation will occur only in elite private schools and in some upper-middle class suburbs, wit h the urban and rural poor attending schools that either lack computers or use them in t he most traditional and ineffective ways. The truth of course will probably lie s omewhere in-between. Not all wealthy schools will use computers well, and not all poorer schools will use them badly. Nevertheless, there are a number of factors that ma ke the nightmare scenario all too likely, including the depth of already-existing ine quality in U.S. schools (Kozol, 1991), the heightening economic polarization in the U.S. i n recent years (Mishel, Bernstein, & Schmitt, 1996), and a hundred-year history in which learner-centered reforms have almost always been implemented more readily among p rivileged students than among poor ones (Cuban, 1993). But just because one master narrative m ight ring truer does not mean that it is true. As Bryson and de Castell (1998) point out, th e "normativizing" (p. 76) of any one particular account of educational technology as the account imposes premature closure on what may be accomplished, thus discounting and r estricting the human agency which can actually bring about transformative educational results. Classroom research, and particularly qualitative research which attempts to understand classroom practices from the perspective of the participants, can help bridg e the gap between story and reality. To further explore the relationship bet ween technology, reform, and equality, I carried out a qualitative study in two schools in t he state of Hawai'i from 1997-1998. The first, Leina High, is a public school in one of the poorest neighborhoods of O'ahu. The second, Kaunani, is one of the most elite colle ge preparatory schools in the nation. However, this study was not meant to be a simple co mparison of "rich good school vs. poor bad school". Both Leina and Kaunani have reput ations for excellent use of new technologies, and that is why I selected these two schools for investigation. Through the study, I was hoping to learn more about good uses o f new technology in radically
4 of 22different sociocultural circumstances as a way of d iscovering both the possibilities of reform as well as some of its limitations. I conducted the study using an interpre tive qualitative approach based on classroom observations, interviews, and analysis of texts. I chose the two schools based on interviews and informal discussions with school district administrators and teachers as to their opinions of the best schools in O'ahu i n integrating technology and instruction. From the suggestions offered, I chose these two schools based on their distinct socioeconomic populations. I then visited the two schools on approximately a weekly basis over a six-month period in the 1997-19 98 school year. During my visits, I interviewed school administrators, technology coord inators, counselors, department chairs, classroom teachers, and students on their t houghts regarding integration of technology in education. In the majority of cases I tape recorded and transcribed the interviews. In situations where spontaneous discuss ions arose that were not possible to record, I took notes during or immediately after th e discussions. From my discussions with administrators, department chairs, and teacher s, I sought the names of teachers who had a reputation for outstanding use of information technology in their teaching. I observed these teachers' classes during my visits t o the schools. During these observations, I interacted with students and spoke to them about their experiences. I sometimes helped students while they were working a t computers. I took notes during my observations, or, if I was busy helping students immediately thereafter. Finally, I was provided by teachers and administrators with sc hool reports and documents, and also had access to papers, reports, newsletters, an d World Wide Web sites produced by students. In the remainder of this article, I wil l share what I learned at these two schools, and then explore the similarities and differences o f the reform process.Leina High Leina High is a sprawling school of low bungalows in a semirural corner of O'ahu. The neighboring community of Leina is one of the few remaining areas on O'ahu with a large percentage of Native Hawaiians. It is also one of the most economically depressed areas in the state. Fewer than 10% of the adults living in the area have completed bachelor's degrees, and per capita income in the area is less than $10,000 per year. Leina High's character is shaped by tha t of the neighboring community. Half the students are Native Hawaiians and many of the rest are Samoan and Filipino immigrants. Most qualify for free or reducedcost lunch programs. Some live in homeless encampments on nearby beaches. Twice as ma ny students are performing below grade level as is the national norm, and only one-sixth as many are performing above grade level. Of those who are able to graduat e, the majority seek work, join the military, or study part-time at nearby community co lleges. Only 11% of seniors claim that they plan to enter directly into a four-year c ollege or university; no statistics are available on how many actually do. Information in t his and the preceding paragraph was provided in a personal interview with the school pr incipal (November 13, 1997) and in school documents which she provided. To better meet the challenges the schoo l faces, Leina administrators have launched an aggressive reform campaign in recent ye ars. At the centerpiece of the reform plan is a school-to-work plan to better prep are students for success in Hawaii's competitive economy. As part of the planned reforms students in the future will select a career pathway such as arts and communications, bus iness and management, health
5 of 22services, human services, or natural resources, and then take a number of related courses in that particular pathway while also participating in extracurricular activities such as visits to local workplaces. Another important goal of reform at Lei na is for better integration of technology into the school's programs. The school's technology committee has laid out an ambitious five-year plan to ensure that the school's infrastr ucture will allow teachers and students to access a wide variety of technologies, that teac hers will have the training to competently integrate technology into their curricu la, and that students will have multiple opportunities to become technology literat e for their chosen career pathways. Based on these plans, Leina High won an award for h aving the best technology vision in its school district. From my visits I could see that impleme ntation of the plan was clearly in its early stages. Though the library had assembled a fair amo unt of electronic resources, in several visits I never saw more than one or two stu dents using them. Outside the library, computers were relatively scarce, with a total of s ome 200 computers for Leina's 2200 students. And only a few buildings on campus were w ired for the Internet. Susan Bello, the school's educational technology coordinator, ex plained to me why the wiring was going slowly: Due to lack of funds, we had to get volunteers to d ig the ditches to lay the cable. So we've had teachers, parents, community me mbers out helping dig. But it's been really slow going since the buildings are spread out, and there's only a few inches of soil before you get to solid c oral. Other problems have to do with the exis ting infrastructure of the buildings. The classrooms, which were built in 1957 and have not b een rewired, are unable to handle the power and electricity requirements of modern co mputer equipment. In spite of these challenges, a number of teachers at Leina are making efforts to integrate computers into their teaching, and some h ave had great successes. When speaking to Susan and other teachers and administra tors at Leina, I was pointed to three programs which had made strides in this area: the c ommunications program, marine sciences program, and Hawaiian studies program.Communications The communications program at Leina dat es back tp 1994 when two social studies teachers teamed up to teach an introductory mass media course, focusing on both video production and computer multimedia production This single course has since expanded into an ambitious program of more than 400 students integrating video production, radio production, Web site design, comp uter animation, journalism, and yearbook production. The majority of the students i n the program take an introduction course co-taught by two teachers and a teaching ass istant; students in the course choose to specialize in either video production, radio pro duction, or Web site design. More advanced students take courses in video or multimed ia journalism and work to produce video and Web documentaries, multimedia computer an imations, and a television news program shown on a local cable station. The program has won numerous state, national, and international awards, including a top price in an international Internet fair for a student-produced World Wide Web site on the Leina C oast, providing multimedia information on the region's history and ecosystem.
6 of 22 During my own visits to the mass media class, students were working on developing Web pages for Leina sports teams and clu bs. More advanced students were working independently on more sophisticated Web sit es (including a written report and video of a recent surfing competition) and developi ng complex computer animation. Students were working in a highly independent fashi on, with the teacher providing individual or small group support and guidance.Marine sciences Another innovate program which has atte mpted to make use of new computer technologies is in marine sciences. Students in the interdisciplinary marine sciences class engage in collaborative project work related to different aspects of the subject, including growing and selling their own commercial seaweed, and preparing for and participating in sailing voyages around Hawai'i. Co mputer work centers around producing a newsletter about their projects, based on their own collaborative writing and editing as well as research they conduct on the Wor ld Wide Web. Students work in terms to discuss and select stories. They then writ e an outline and at least three drafts of their article, with it peer reviewed by a student e ditor. Students receive extra points of their work is published in the newsletter. The teacher, May Wong, explained how th e rationale behind the newsletter: My big thing is I want the students to be computer literate. Cause I really feel that's real important in today's word. So I re quire that all the students come in either before school, after school or durin g recess to get computer time. And every newsletter that's once a month. The y have to have at least three times to use the computer outside of class ti me. Now, they cannot use the computer during class time and get this. And th ey can do it for anything. They can come here during English class and say, "C an I type an English paper, and they'll still get computer time?" Cause my big thing, are they comfortable, are they literate on the computer. I d on't care if they're doing my work or not. During my own visits while students wer e working on the newsletter, they worked to make plans in groups, word process their papers, or seek information from the Web about current events. They were just beginning to use the Web, and their searches were quite cursory, reflecting a quick desire to gr ab a likely story for the newsletter rather than an informed search, analysis, or critiq ue of online information. Hawaiian Studies A third program that is starting to mak e use of new technologies is Hawaiian Studies, an interdisciplinary program incorporating Hawaiian language and culture, anthropology and history, and physical agriscience. Students in the program also engage in fieldwork, including a weekly visit to a Hawaiia n cultural center where they help plant traditional Hawaiian crops such as taro. Use of new technologies in the program has been mostly dedicated to student documentation of t he program and its projects. This includes a studentproduced newsletter using desktop publishing and student-produced videos and Web pages on the Hawaiian studies progra m. The teacher is planning on getting the students involved in an international e nvironmental data-sharing Internet
7 of 22project, but students had not yet begun the project during the time of my visits. Unlike the Marine sciences program, whi ch has a dozen computers, the Hawaiian studies classroom only has two, one of which is in disrepair. From my visits it appeared that work on the computer was largely controlled by a small group of students who were most comfortable with it. These students help produ ce the newsletter and Web page and will enter the data in the future Internet project. Overall, relatively few students were u sing computers at Leina. Though the library had a new computer laboratory available for classes or individuals, the computers were rarely in use during my visits there. There we re no other drop-in laboratories for students at the school, and there were relatively f ew computers in classroom. A few teachers, as reported above, are starting to integr ate computers into the classroom for production of newsletters and informational Web sit es, and some of the students in the media program are learning sophisticated multimedia production techniques.Kaunani School Many people would consider Kaunani (K-1 2) School to be the polar opposite of Leina. Kaunani is one of the most expensive private schools in Hawai'i and one of the top-ranked college preparatory schools in the Unite d States. Approximately 97% of its graduates go on directly to four-year colleges and universities, with many going to elite private colleges on the U.S. mainland. Kaunani has strict admissions policies, requiring a battery of tests for all applicants. In addition to paying some $10,000 per year, potential Kaunani students (even applicants to kindergarten) must test two ful l years above grade level. The ethnic mix is also quite different at Kaunani than Leina; most Kaunani students are of European, Japanese, or Chinese ancestry, with relat ively few Hawaiians, Samoans, or Filipinos. Though Kaunani already has the reputati on as the best school in the state, it is working to improve in a number of areas. According to a recent five-year plan, Kaunani seeks to strengthen its emphasis on critical thinki ng skills; collaborative and autonomous learning; global education; and ethics, spiritualit y, and community service. Like Leina, Kaunani is placing great em phasis on technology, but Kaunani has much greater financial means to implement its plans While Leina has a technology coordinator for the school, working in the back of the library, Kaunani has an entire department devoted to this effort, with a coordinat or, a large staff, and its own multi-room building. Kaunani has been able to wire the entire school (using union labor, not volunteers) and has some 1000 computers availab le for its 3,700 students (a ration of 3.7 students to computer as compared to 11.0 studen ts to computer at Leina). Most impressive of all though are plans for a new $64 mi llion science and technology center, the construction of which is currently underway. Th e center will include a large lecture hall with multimedia presentation capacity and one Internet connection for every two seats; numerous laboratory and classrooms fully equ ipped with networked computers and other technological equipment; a math science r esource center for students; a science workshop for hands-on interactive demonstra tions and themed exhibits; and high-tech faculty conference rooms and work rooms t o promote interdisciplinary teacher collaboration. Use of computer technologies for teachi ng, though also at a relatively early stage, is more common at Kaunani. I will examine briefly f our programs in which computers are being used: high school English and social stud ies, high school foreign language, high school science, and elementary school science.
8 of 22English and Social Studies English and social studies teachers are trying to use computers to help their students develop literacies in new media as well as to use the online world for academic collaboration and research. One English teacher tau ght a special online writing course during summer. Students in participated in the cour se while also engaging in summer travel (one student was on holiday in the Netherlan ds). Activities included computer-mediated discussions of readings, the post ing of student essays on the Web, and the development of an online writing center wit h links to and reviews of sites related to writing and technology. The same teacher is plan ning a new regular course which will integrate global education and ethics by having Kau nani students connect with students in other countries to analyze and reflect on ethica l themes in world literature. A social studies and literature teacher are jointly teaching an interdisciplinary course on American studies in which all students ha ve been assigned laptop computers for the school year. Students use the laptops to ta ke notes in class, to write their papers, to discuss topics via e-mail, and to develop and sh ow multimedia presentations on their research.Foreign Language Foreign language teachers at Kaunani ha ve been at the forefront of using new technologies for global interaction and education. For example, several of the Japanese teachers at the school have integrated e-mail and t he Internet into their teaching. One Japanese teacher is having her students produce a J apanese-language radio program for a local station. To help prepare the program, the stu dents are working in teams to survey Japanese correspondents via e-mail. They then, usin g both e-mail and live video-conferencing, further discuss with their Japa nese correspondents the topics and content of their radio scripts. The teacher is plan ning a project next year where students will select several Japanese characters on display at a local cultural center. They will then research the historical meaning of characters and combine that with current interpretations based on e-mail interviews with stu dents in Japan. The goal is to compare the language and culture of contemporary Japanese s ociety with that of the Japanese who came to Hawai'i 100 years ago.Science Computers are being used extensively in honors physics and advanced placement (A.P.) biology programs. (Approximately half of Kau nani students take honors and/or A.P. classes). In physics class, students perform c omputer-based simulations of motion experiments one day, and then the next day they per form the actual experiments in laboratories of sophisticated equipment (e.g., fric tionless air tubes). The computer-based simulations allow them to try out a broader range o f hypotheses related to motion and collision of multiple objects traveling in multiple directions at multiple velocities. In biology class, the students use special hand-held d evices for probing the temperature, acidity, absorption spectra and other features of p lant life in the classroom and in nearby ponds. Students then download data from these devic es to personal computers, where special software allows them to graph and compare d ata in order in order to interpret it.
9 of 22Elementary School Science Use of computers for science begins at elementary school at Kaunani. Fifth grade students learn to write computer programs for a Log o-Lego system. Unlike earlier Logo systems, in which these programs were used to manip ulate a drawing of a turtle on the screen, this new Logo-Lego system can be physically connected by wires to the students' own constructions made up of plastic Lego building blocks. Students thus first build small cars and traffic lights, and the use the comp uter programs they write to make the cars go and stop per the change of traffic signal. Overall, there was a substantial presen ce of computers and computing at Kaunani. There were several large wired computer la boratories available to classes or individual students on a drop-in basis, and the use of these labs was quite heavy. In the labs and on their home computers, students frequent ly searched the Internet to get information for school papers. Several teachers had begun to integrate computers into their academic programs in areas related to writing foreign language collaboration, and scientific research and analysis.Common Elements of Reform As seen from these above examples, ther e are many common elements of successful classroom use of technology which are ev ident at both Leina and Kaunani. These elements, which I will briefly discuss, inclu de interdisciplinary and team teaching, collaborative/apprenticeship learning, flexible sch eduling, and support for teacher initiative and involvement.Interdisciplinary and Team Teaching Almost all the cases of excellent techn ology use that I observed in these classes are attempting in some way to break out of traditio nal classroom disciplines. In some cases this involves an individual teacher designing a project with many disciplines in mind, such as the elementary school teacher plannin g a Logo-Lego project which incorporates math, physics, computer programming, a nd engineering concepts for elementary school students; or a Japanese teacher p lanning a lesson which incorporates language, culture, and history. In other cases, the courses themselves are interdisciplinary by design, such as the marine sci ences course at Kaunani. And in many cases, teachers have found ways to form partnership or team teaching relationships with those from other disciplines. For example, the comp uter component of A.P. biology was set up through cooperation with a mathematics teach er; in the future, the two teachers plan to establish a paired A.P. biology and A.P. ca lculus course. The video production and computer production teachers at Leina have join ed for a combined Mass Media course, and they coordinate together with the teach ers in business, journalism, and yearbook production. Similarly, these interdiscipli nary programs coordinate with each other at a meta level, with students from the Hawai ian studies or Marine sciences programs who are also in the mass media program wor king on projects which combine their interests (e.g., a Web site or video about ma rine sciences). Collaborative Apprenticeship Learning
10 of 22 In addition to breaking down traditiona l boundaries among disciplines and among teachers, successful technology-enhanced prog rams at both Leina and Kaunani are also breaking down traditional teacherstudent roles. Virtually all the computer projects I saw at either school were based on socia l constructivist principles of learning, with students working in groups to define and carry out projects. For example, in the Web production program at Kaunani was organized mor e like a semesterlong workshop than a traditional teacher-centered class. Students came and went immediately to their computers, which were spread out in cluste rs around the class. The teacher occasionally offered explicit instruction to the wh ole class, but students paid (or didn't pay) attention based on their own particular intere st in the topic of discussion. Students worked in teams and were encouraged to pursue areas of their own interest, with some students focusing on researching and writing texts, others focused on advanced Web production techniques, and others focused on artist ic areas such as multimedia animation. Students sought help as they needed it f rom each other or the teacher. Grades in the course were based either on the students' or on occasional performance assessments, in which students were required to cre ate Web pages with certain features. The teacher acted as a coach and guide, bringing in new instructional videos and books for students to use, giving them individual or smal l group guidance on their work, letting them know (and helping them prepare for) upcoming c ompetitions, inviting students to accompany him to either attend advanced workshops o r give basic and intermediate workshops to others, and providing students moral s upport and encouragement. For example, he would frequently remind them of the suc cessful national awards won by previous students, and would also tell them that Le ina High is "the Kaunani of Web design," just like people might say that their city is the Paris of Asia, or Africa, or the Middle East. In essence the teacher is a master Web page designer who is working hard to continuously upgrade his knowledge of the most s ophisticated new technologies, ranging from "VRML" (Virtual Reality Modeling Langu age) to "Claymation" (clay animation). Students are his apprentices; they begi n by working under his guidance on simple projects such as the design of a Web page ab out a sports team at Kaunani. Those who show a serious interest continue to more substa ntial efforts, such as the previously mentioned virtual tour of the Leina coast. The biology course at Kaunani indicated a similar collaborative apprenticeship approach. In this course, students were apprenticin g to be biologists rather than Web designers. Though portions of the course were devot ed to lecture, other portions were devoted to engagement in the practice of biological research using computer technology as a tool in the same way a scientist might. Studen ts worked in groups to carry out and interpret their experiences, achieving results, whi ch according to the teacher, were potentially publishable in scientific journals. The teacher wandered around the classroom and guided the students in everything fro m the gathering of data to its interpretation to the formation of overall conclusi ons. Flexible Scheduling At both schools, an interdisciplinary a pproach and collaborative apprenticeship learning were facilitated by flexible schedulingÂ—of a somewhat simple form at Leina, and a more complex form at Kaunani. At Leina, Mondays, Tuesdays, and Friday s were organized according to a traditional six-period high school program. However Wednesdays and Thursdays were based on double periods, with students having three two-hour classes on Wednesday (first, third, and fifth periods) and three two-hou r classes on Thursday (second, fourth,
11 of 22and sixth periods). These double-periods were essen tial for carrying out the kind of in-depth project that apprenticeship learning often involves. Students in video production wandered campus to carry out filming and interviewing. Students in marine sciences tended to their seaweed. Students in Hawai ian Studies combined two two-hour slots and worked at the nearby Hawaiian cultural ce nter. At Kaunani, the reorganization of sched uling has been more dramatic. School is organized according to six-day cycles, rather than five-day weeks (e.g., cycle 1 is M-T-W-Th-F-M, cycle 2 is T-W-Th-F-M-T). Teachers ar e assigned a certain number of contact hours per day, which they can divide up how ever they please. For example, English teachers are assigned 85 student-contact ho urs a day. They can teach, if they want, five one-hour classes of 17 students, or one one-hour lecture of 85 students, or some combination. Most teachers put together a sche dule which includes a combination of larger lectures, smaller discussion groups, and possibly small but lengthier laboratory sessions. This approach, while obviously much more complex and difficult to set up, is even more advantageous than the Leina setting for i mplementing technology-enhanced project work, as teachers can create the combinatio n of laboratory, discussion, lecture, or other sessions that are most appropriate for the ty pe of course they are teaching. For example, the American Studies course met twice per cycle for one-hour classes of 27 students, twice per cycle in one-hour discussion se minars of 13 or 14 students, and once per cycle for a two-hour sessions of 60 students fo r lectures or films. The biology and physics classes both combine longer sessions of sma ller groups in the labs and computer rooms, with larger shorter lectures.Teacher Initiative and Involvement As Larry Cuban (1986) has documented, n ew and supposedly revolutionary technologies have been imposed from above for a cen tury, with poor results. Central district and school administrators have a history o f urging or demanding use of radio, television, film, and now computers, with little in volvement from classroom teachers in making school-wide decisions about technological im plementation. Both Leina High and Kaunani School have avoided this problem. On the contrary, both schools seem to be exemplary in invo lving teachers in shaping the direction of the school, and in particular encourag ing their initiatives regarding technology. Leina High is a designated School Commu nity Based Management (SCBM) site and thus receives extra support from the Hawai'i De partment of Education for teacher and community involvement in decision-making, inclu ding the potential of receiving special waiver days (in which students are dismisse d from school for teacher planning). Leina has used these days to the maximum over the l ast three years to involve teachers in developing the five-year plan for the school. Te achers I spoke with were quite familiar with the details of the plan, and couched their own teaching goals and visions in accord with the plan's language. Teachers at Leina have also been quite involved in shaping policies regarding technology. The technology plan has arisen through grassroots teacher involvement, and teachers have been given release time to work out i ts implementation. In addition, grassroots teacher initiatives are respected and ap preciated, especially when they involve crossing disciplinary boundaries. As the principal told me, We've been encouraging teachers to informally hook up with each other. Do interdisciplinary projects. Do things together. Get out of your own four
12 of 22walls or your own content area and try doing someth ing different with a teacher from another department. So we've been enco uraging this kind of behavior among the staff...And so technology, with [the media] program, they've been deliberately expanding and trying to e ncompass more areas into what they do. And with the Hawaiian Studies pr ogram the technology really just supports what they're doing in terms of having the kids learn about agriculture. From agriculture all the way to architecture and archaeology. And then with the marine sciences prog ram also they're doing a they're now integrating what they're doing in m arine sciences with social studies. History as well as modern day Hawaii. So t hat's the direction. The direction is toward integration and towards creatin g career pathways and so we expect to see more people jumping in and doing t hat kind of thing. Recently the teachers in the communicat ions program were pulled out of their classes for four straight days to plan the future o f their program, and the role of technology within it, while substitute teachers tau ght their classes. The media teacher complimented the role of the principal: I credit her the most as far as our successes. She is real action oriented. She's visionary. And she's very, very supportive of what we do. She's been very supportive. She's given us the leeway. And I t hink as a result of her support we've been successful. We've been able to t ry and move things. Cause without a principal that says, sure, try a re cording studio, or, sure, try a radio station, sure, you want a digital camera; I needed money to get a digital camera she doesn't really understand what it is but she understands that we want to stay on top of the new technology. The support for teacher involvement and initiative at Kaunani is equally impressive. The school just thoroughly reviewed its policies and goals as part of a review by the Western Association of Schools and Co lleges. All faculty and staff participated in meetings to help clarify the school 's purpose, as well as hundreds of students, parents, and alumni. Teachers are also gi ven substantial support to integrate new technologies, including release time from the c ollege for innovative practices, special funds for purchase of equipment, and suppor t for taking of classes. The social studies teacher making use of laptop computers is d oing so with a school grant (both for equipment and release time) and is also taking a co urse on distance education with funding from the school. And a special interdiscipl inary committee of the faculty is meeting on a regular basis to discuss uses of the I nternet and distance education, again with release time from the school for these purpose s. Teachers who engage in such projects are also expected to produce reports for t he rest of the faculty based on their experiences.Different Resources, Different Expectations As seen above, there were many substant ial areas of overlap between the reform process in these two diverse schools. At the same t ime, though, there are also important areas of difference. I will group them into two gen eral areas, related to resources and expectations.
13 of 22Resources When looking at resources at the two sc hools, it is important to start from the differential access to technology that students hav e at home. At Kaunani, in one social studies class I surveyed every single student had a home computer, and the majority had 2, 3 or 4 computers at home with one or more Intern et accounts. My informal polling of students indicated that it was rare of find a stude nt at Leina who had home access to a modern computerÂ—most either lacked a computer or ha d part-time access to a very old machine. As a librarian at Leina explained to me, We have to provide technology because they don't ha ve it at home. The only exposure to technology they have is at school. Most don't even have push-button phones, or indeed any workable phone li ne at all. Often when we call their phones are out of order or disconnect ed. People are struggling at home to pay their phone bills. Unfortunately, this differential access between Kaunani and Leina students is further multiplied at school. Classes at Leina are held in dilapidated bungalows with poor infrastructure to support modern technologies. The Hawaiian Studies class, for example, has a dial-up connection to the Internet a s the building lacks the electrical facilities to support a hard-wired connection. Lein a's Web production teacherÂ—one of the most honored teachers in the state, with awards of recognition from the Mayor, Governor, House of Representatives, and State Senat eÂ—has only eight computers in his classroom, so students must double or triple up on a machine. In contrast, Kaunani already has a fully wired school and a high compute r-student ratio, and it is in the midst of building one of the most modern and well-equippe d school science and technology centers in the country. Dozens of high-paid constru ction workers labor away day-byday at Kaunani, while technological improvements Leina depends in part on the sweat of unpaid volunteers. Differences extend to the support given for teachers as well. Leina High does its best with limited resources, but it has only so muc h to offer. Teachers who want extra funding have to write grant proposals on their own time. Kaunani has its own financial support staff on campus which seeks grants for the school; the money is then made available to teachers for the asking. And while tea chers at Leina teach six classes a day of up to 35 students, Kaunani teachers face an aver age of 85-100 students a day (based on 17-20 students per period for five periods) in a schedule totally at their own control. Smaller class sizes and fewer classes mean that tea chers can spend more time preparing for their classes, including thinking about how to integrate technology, and can devote more personal attention to individual students as t hey uses computers in the classroom. Expectations The second major difference has to do w ith the goals, visions, and expectations of the schools. While the processes of reform are i n many ways similar in the two schoolsÂ—include interdisciplinary and team teaching collaborative/apprenticeship learning, flexible scheduling, and high levels of t eacher initiative and involvementÂ—the goals toward which the reform is geared differ dram atically in the two schools. Leina High's reform process, including the uses of technology, is geared toward
14 of 22better preparing students for the workforce. Teache rs work to help students develop the types of technological literacy and human relations skills that might be needed in the workplace, without great emphasis on academic conte nt. To illustrate how this takes place, I will briefly examine two programs, the com munications program and the marine sciences program. The strong majority of students i n the communications program take either radio production or video production. In bot h of these classes, most students focus principally on learning technical skills, such as h ow to videotape or how to edit a radio program. Likewise, for the minority of students who take Web production, most of the work is focused on the technical aspects of Web pag e production. (In contrast, at Kaunani, students also are involved in producing th e school's Web pages, but they do this as part-time paid work, rather than as part of their academic course load). In the marine sciences program, much of the work the students do has little relationship to science. The teacher spends a good deal of time with the students discussing the meaning of inspirational quotations, or reading stories from the popular book, Chicken Soup for the Soul and even had students write their own stories for a classroom version of the book (Portuguese Soup for the Soul). Work at the computers serves a similar communitarian purpose; the newslet ter the students produce has little hard scientific information in it and instead focus es on the students personal experiences (e.g., "Students sail on the voyage of a lifetime," "Dear Journal". (The Hawaiian studies newsletter also featured similar personal stories, introducing the teachers and students, discussing attendance policy, and announcing a cale ndar of upcoming events.) Both the communications teacher and the marine sciences teacher both explained to me their hidden curriculumÂ—the purpose behind wh at they do in the classroom. Carla, the communications teacher explained that: We have to make it relevant, because when they leav e us, we want to be able to say that they not only, you know maybe as w e're teaching teamwork, cooperation, respect for themselves and others. We just so happen to be teaching that through video production. Through com puters. Through radio. And when they leave that, when they leave us we wan t them to learn how important it is to have teamwork, cooperation, and respect for themselves and others and property. Because no matter what the y do, right, whether it's in a job or a relationship, they have to have that. And hopefully at least that they're taking with them. And they have some kind o f a skill that's going to be able to get them a job. Whether it be media or a nything, you never know what they're going to grab on. The marine sciences teacher explained t o me her very similar approach, also stressing respect and cooperation:. There's four things that I expect the students to l earn.... Number one I expect them to learn respect. How to be respectful. Number two, responsibility. Number three, to work cooperatively in a team situa tion. And number four is to be seekers of information. If I can teach you those four things by the time you graduate I will feel like I've done my job And I said, you notice, there's nothing to do with science. Â‘Cause to me th e science portion will come as a part of being responsible and useful seek ers of information....As far as I'm concerned they cannot learn the science and they cannot learn the material if they're doing all of the above.
15 of 22 She later explained to me why she didn' t feel it was important to emphasize scientific concepts in her marine sciences program: I've been doing this for about six, seven years now seven years of so. And the really interesting thing is about two or three years ago this whole school-to-work thing came out. And they went to big companies, and they asked these employers, they said, when our students graduate from high school what do you want them to know? And the emplo yers all came up and said, We don't care what they studied, we want a st udent who's respectful, who's responsible, who can work together with other people and want to learn and want to learn, we can train them. We don' t care. We don't need them to be honors students and all that. We can tra in them on the job. Give us kids who know how to be respectful, responsible, team players. And so it's right in line with what we've been doing and I feel really good about that...cause this is what employers want. For both teachers, the central element is not the content, but the attitudes that students learn from the class. And the attitudes wh ich are most important are the respect and cooperationÂ—how to be a good team memberÂ—which employers value. Both of these teachers are trying to fu rther strengthen the school-towork component of the program in another way too, by int egrating a strong business component into their teaching. The marine sciences teacher is seeking to develop a team-teaching relationship with a business teacher, so that the students can better market their seaweed. She also hopes to have students trac k the progress of local stocks on the World Wide Web as part of their education for futur e marketing, sales, and investment. The communications program has already brought a business teacher to help teach sales, marketing, and accounting. As she expl ained: We want to be looked at as a production company. So say, when you come into this class you're not coming to class, you're coming to work. Each of you have a job to do. And we want to start, because this type of class takes so much money to, repair and maintenance, and, you know we want to get air conditioners and this and that. We need to star t raising our own money. So we want to start selling our services. For the l ast four years we've been doing it for free. And we still want to do it for f ree to a certain extent. Especially to the community as community service. B ut, we also need to start generating our own income. So we want to star t selling videos. If somebody wants, let's say, a wedding video, we want to be able to do that. Somebody wants a little documentary on their projec t, or, for the radio people want, they want a little 15 second radio, co mmercial on their business, or you know if they want to come and reco rd themselves we want to be able to generate funding through that. Our ki ds have done numerous Web sites. And you know that costs money if you go on the outside. But we've been doing it for free. And we can make money doing them. We won't charge them an arm and a leg, but we'll charg e them something. And the kids need to know how do you go about doing tha t. How do you market? How do you sell your product? What do you s ell. What do you charge? You know, business fundamentals.
16 of 22 I did not have a chance to interview or observe all the teachers in the school. Yet these teachers have been identified by colleagues, students, and the administration as the most exemplary that Leina has to offer. And from my observations of their classes and interviews with students in their classes, that is not surprising. They are both highly engaged, committed professionals who devote untold hours and boundless energy to providing new opportunities for their students. And their energy is devoted to reshaping students' attitudes, and providing the skills and a cumen, to better compete in the job market, with the use of new technologies serving th ese purposes as well. In some cases, the Leina teachers thems elves are anxious to raise standards but find the challenge overwhelming. Last semester, for example, May was teaching a combined beginning-advanced class with some 45 stud ents. Her original plan was to have the 30 beginning students work on introductory projects, while the 15 advanced students (all in their second or third year of vide o production) worked on more challenging news programs and documentaries. But co ordinating different levels of so many students in the same semester became overwhelm ing, especially with limited amounts of video equipment. Most of her time and en ergy thus was devoted to the beginning students, and she was not able to get the advanced students working on the projects until much later in the school year. At Kaunani, expectations, policies, and teaching and learning conditions differ dramatically. The school is designed to produce the academic and professional leaders of tomorrow. Discussions of school reform are framed b y the goal of helping students meet the requirements and expectations of the most prest igious universities. As for technology, teachers seek to use it for academic ra ther than communitarian purposes (for an interesting discussion of the differential impac t of a communitarian climate and an academic climate, see Phillips, 1997) This is seen, for example, in the Japanese classrooms, where students' use long-distance excha nge for analysis of complex cultural and linguistic issues. Or in the biology classes, w here students use computers to perform the same types of analysis and research that a univ ersity research might perform, rather than to produce a newsletter (and where the teacher is teaming with a calculus teacher, not a business teacher). The biology teacher at Kau nani explained his own rationale for using computers, which is quite different from the perspective of the science teacher at Leina: We've been working over the years on our biology pr ogram, particularly our advanced biology program, to give students the type of experience that they need to prepare them for college work...I had been a research scientist at Berkeley and Stanford as a graduate student. So I h ave a very strong background in research, which I loved. And I try to share that love of research with my students. And since I was pretty m uch lab oriented and biochemistry oriented I did what I knew and tried t o implement those kinds of experiments. When the advanced placement biology program became formalized they gave us a lab. And at first that wa s very frustrating but we gradually were able to do all the labs they asked u s to do and still implement our own program and add to it and to the best of ou r ability we maintained a strong program that we feel prepares students for c ollege level work. And it became obvious as we, over the last ten years, the computers were becoming one of the most important scientific tools available. And, so we wanted to implement the computers into the program. And the way we did this was we brought two computers of own, our own p ersonal computers
17 of 22from home, we purchased the software ourselves and we demonstrated to the administration of this school that we could use the computers in the classroom in a productive and effective way. Once w e'd proved that we could use them they were willing to fund it. And so we had cooperation from the parent/faculty association and the adminis tration. And they funded our computer program. And we realized that this was an important scientific direction for our students to go. Perhaps most interesting to me was my o bservation of the fifth-grade students work on the Logo-Lego project and my discussions wi th the teacher of that project. Similarly to the teachers at Leina, this teacher to ld me his own "hidden curriculum" behind the teaching. I'm teaching a lot of other things besides math and science. Probably the most important think is project management, making complex things happen in a certain amount of time. I'll say, O.K., based on these commands that we know how they control the machines, now do this in the next hour. And they have to work in teams. Or, I'll make an ex tension based on what they know, and then there are multiple solutions, s o there's all different ways to do it. But they have to do it within an hou r. Getting to operate under those conditions I think that's important. It was noteworthy that both Leina and K aunani teachers stressed the importance of participating in teams. But whereas Leina studen ts were expected to learn things such as responsibility to the group and respect for othe r, Kaunani studentsÂ—even those as young as in the fifth gradeÂ—were expected to learn how to manage complex systems.Conclusions This study examined the process of scho ol reform and technology implementation in two diverse schools, an elite pri vate school and a school in a low socio-economic status neighborhood. Interestingly, the process of reform in the two schools showed a good deal of similarity. Both scho ols encourage interdisciplinary and team teaching, collaborative/apprenticeship learnin g, flexible scheduling, and active teacher initiative and involvement in shaping the u se of new technologies. In some ways, Kaunani's reforms in these areas were more dramatic as seen in the total modular scheduling at Kaunani as compared to the double-per iod days at Leina. But Leina nevertheless implemented similar reforms within the school's more limited means. The study thus provides a positive example of how a low -SES school can engage in the types of reform that are seen as necessary to make effect ive use of technology (see for example Sandholtz, et al., 1997; Means, 1998) and which are believed to rarely occur outside of elite private schools or public schools in well-todo suburbs (Cuban, 1993). But in spite of the above, it is also t he case that Kaunani continues to socialize students into academia, and Leina socializes studen ts into the workforce, a difference made explicit by the emphasis on school-to-work at Leina. And the students from Leina, who enter high school far behind their Kaunani coun terparts in technological literacy due in part to limited access to home computers, ar e likely to fall much further behind from the respective high school education students receive in the two schools. Kaunani
18 of 22students have more school computers at their access and are more likely to use them for scholarly experimentation and research than are stu dents at Leina. Studies have shown that students in low SES neighborhood schools frequently used computers for exercises and drills in basic sk ills (e.g., Wenglinsky, 1998). That is not what I observed here. Perhaps the era of "drill and kill" may fade away, at least in secondary schools, to be replaced in low -SES schoo ls by the development of attractive but limitedcontent Web pages or newsletters. Leina's best-regarded teachers are buil ding award-winning programs which are inspiring students and actively engaging them in th e learning process. They are turning many lives around, and their best students are winn ing national and international awards for their media projects. These teachers' hard work has indeed made Leina "the Kaunani of Web page design". The types of collaborative app renticeship project-based teaching they are engaged in, together with other reforms su ch as team teaching and flexible scheduling, have contributed to these positive resu lts, and are worthy of emulation by other schools. But Kaunani school itself remains "the Kaunani" of mathematics, physics, biology, history, literature, and foreign languages And that in the end has a profound effect on the differing life opportunities for Lein a and Kaunani students. To seriously diminish that difference, it will take more than te am teaching or flexible scheduling or collaborative learning, but rather a challenge to t he unequal allocation of resources and expectations to Leina High and Kaunani School and t o the thousands of other Leinas and Kaunanis across the country. In analyzing integration of technology into instruction, Cuban (1993) proclaimed that "Computer meets classroom: Classroom wins" (p. 185). The implication was that the traditional patterns of classroom organization are proving impermeable to change, even with the introduction of large numbers of comp uters into schools. This study suggests that even in those cases where the compute r "beats" the classroom, it doesn't necessarily beat the system. Computers, Internet us e, re-arranged classrooms, flexible schedules, and interactive instruction can all leav e intact or even reinforce patterns by which schools channels students into different soci al futures. This study thus provides support for bo th the discourse of reform and the discourse of inequality. Schools of diverse socio-e conomic circumstances can carry out the types of technology-enhanced reform that make e ducation more interactive. But these reforms take place in a social context that w ill likely make education more unequal.NoteThe names of schools, administrators, teachers and students have all been either changed or deleted in this study.ReferencesBryson, M., & Castell, d. S. (1998). Telling tales out of school: Modernist, critical, and postmodern "true stories" about educational computi ng. In H. Bromley & M. W. Apple (Eds.), Education/technology/power Albany: State University of New York Press. Cuban, L. (1986). Teachers and machines: The classroom use of technol ogy since 1920 New York: Teachers College Press.
19 of 22Cuban, L. (1993). Computer meets classroom: Classro om wins. Teachers College Record 95 (2), 185-210. Cuban, L. (1993). How teachers taught: Constancy and change in Americ an classrooms 1890-1980 (2nd ed.). New York: Longman. Cummins, J., & Sayers, D. (1990). Education 2001: L earning networks and educational reform. Computers in the Schools, 7 (1/2), 1-29. Cummins, J., & Sayers, D. (1995). Brave new schools: Challenging cultural illiteracy through global learning networks New York: St. Martin's Press. Erickson, F. (1986). Qualitative methods in researc h on teaching. In M. Wittrock (Ed.), Handbook of research on teaching (pp. 119161). New York: Macmillan. Hodas, S. (1993). Technology refusal and the organi zational culture of schools Education Policy Analysis Archives, 1 (10). Retrieved November 29, 1997 from the World Wide Web: http://olam.ed.asu.edu/epaa/v1n10.h tml Kling, R., & Zmuidzinas, M. (1994). Technology, ideology and social transformation: The case of computerization and work organization Revue International de Sociologie, 2, 28-56.Kozol, J. (1991). Savage inequalities New York: Harper Collins. Lemke, J. L. (1998). Metamedia literacy: Transforming meanings and media In D. Reinking, M. McKenna, L. Labbo, & R. D. Kieffer (Ed s.), Handbook of Literacy and Technology: Transformations in a Post-Typographic W orld (pp. 283-301). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.Market Data Retrieval (1997). Technology in education 1997: A comprehensive repor t on the state of technology in the K-12 market Shelton, CT: Market Data Retrieval, Inc. Means, B. (1998, April). Models and prospects for bringing technology-suport ed education reform to scale Paper presented at American Educational Research Association Annual Conference, San Diego.Mishel, L., Bernstein, J., & Schmitt, J. (1996). The State of Working America, 1996-97 Washington, DC: Economic Policy Institute.Novak, T. P., Hoffman, D. L., & Project 2000 Vander built University (1998). Bridging the digital divide: The impact of race on computer access and Internet use [Online Article]. Retrieved September 27, 1998 from the Wor ld Wide Web: http://www2000.ogsm.vanderbilt.edu/papers/race/scie nce.html Phillips, M. (1997). What makes schools effective? A comparison of the relationships of communitarian climate and academic climate to mathe matics achievement and attendance during middle school. American Educational Research Journal, 34 (4), 633-662.Sandholtz, J. H., Ringstaff, C., & Dwyer, D. C. (19 97 ). Teaching with technology:
20 of 22 Creating student-centered classrooms New York: Teachers College Press. Starr, P. (1996). Computing our way to educational reform. The American Prospect (27), 50-60. Retrieved December 10, 1999 from the World W ide Web: http://epn.org/prospect/27/27star.htmlWarschauer, M. (1998). Online learning in sociocult ural context Anthropology & Education Quarterly, 29 (1), 68-88. Warschauer, M. (1999 ). Electronic literacies: Language, culture, and po wer in online education Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Wenglinsky, H. (1998). Does it compute?: The relationship between educatio nal technology and student achievement in mathematics Princeton, New Jersey: Educational Testing Service.Zuboff, S. (1988). In the age of the smart machine: The future of work and power New York: Basic Books.About the AuthorMark WarschauerMark Warschauer (http://www.lll.hawaii.edu/markw) formerly a faculty researcher at the University of Hawai'i, is currently director of educational technology on a large US-funded development project in Egypt. He is the e ditor of Language Learning & Technology journal and the author of numerous works on techno logy in education, including, most recently, Electronic Literacies: Language, Culture, and Power in Online Education (Lawrence Erlbaum, 1999).Copyright 2000 by the Education Policy Analysis ArchivesThe World Wide Web address for the Education Policy Analysis Archives is epaa.asu.edu General questions about appropriateness of topics o r particular articles may be addressed to the Editor, Gene V Glass, firstname.lastname@example.org or reach him at College of Education, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 8 5287-0211. (602-965-9644). The Commentary Editor is Casey D. C obb: email@example.com .EPAA Editorial Board Michael W. Apple University of Wisconsin Greg Camilli Rutgers University John Covaleskie Northern Michigan University Alan Davis University of Colorado, Denver Sherman Dorn University of South Florida Mark E. Fetler California Commission on Teacher Credentialing
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