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Change Forces in the Educational Settings Essay

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Updated: Jul 6th, 2020

The knowledge of change should be the core competence of any other person related to the change implementation. In their article, Fullan, Cuttress, and Kilcher (2005) claim that “the presence of change knowledge does not guarantee success, but its absence ensures failure” (p. 54). I could not agree more. In this paper, four forces (out of eight described in the article) are summarized and applied to the educational environment I exist in.

A Moral Purpose

The first and probably the most significant force discussed in the article is a moral purpose, which would inspire people to fight for the common cause. As Fullan, Cuttress, and Kilcher (2005) say, a “moral purpose is front and center”, and the remaining seven are only “additional forces” (p. 55). They define a moral purpose as an improvement of society through better educational techniques. I agree. In my university, a moral purpose should be considered as the reducing of the gap in student achievement. There are always students who are successful and those who are not. Sometimes the reason lies in the level of students’ family income or the color of their skin (Haycock, 2001). Regardless of the cause, we should take measures to get rid of this differentiation.

Developing Cultures for Learning and Evaluation

In this paragraph, two forces described in the article are presented. The first one is the creation of the learning cultures. Although many people believe that changes should be fundamental, individual changes are always more efficient. Winerman (2011) states that even a 15-minute intervention can make a difference. But what those interventions are? The best way to reduce the gap between the students with different level of achievement is to implement the strategies encouraging people to learn from each other. At this stage of organizational change, teachers are probably the most important figures. They can contribute to the common cause by giving the tasks for teams, not individuals, and by focusing on the process, not right answers (Collaborative Learning Builds Deeper Understanding, 2012, par. 3).

Creating a team of both strong and weak students, teachers can achieve impressive results. Additionally, teachers or even a principal should apply various reward systems, for example, if a strong student takes over the training of a weak one, and that weak one shows progress on a particular subject, then a strong student as his mentor gets bonus points on the same subject. Finally, to make sure that students (as well as a university in general) make some progress, cultures of evaluation are necessary. To track the success, we need to collect the baseline data and then consistently do the same, comparing the results with the previous ones (How to Measure the Impact of Change, 2006, par. 2). That will help to draw conclusions regarding the effectiveness of the change and make better decisions in the future.

Leadership for Change

Finally, the last but not the least force is leadership for change. Strong and influential leaders are imperative during the organizational change; however, it is even more important to realize what kind of leaders are needed. Fullan, Cuttress, and Kilcher (2005) state that charismatic and high-flying ones can be not as effective as stable and reliable leaders (p. 57). Still, the innovativeness remains one of the most important qualities, and that is where students can do even more than teachers or managers. As Henry Mintzberg said, “successful managing is not about one’s own success but about fostering success in others” (Fullan, Cuttress, & Kilcher, 2005, p. 57). Therefore, another important goal is to keep the student involved. To encourage potential leaders, teachers should listen to students’ ideas and allow them to participate in the decision-making process concerning curriculum (Svitak, 2012, par. 3). If they feel needed, they will do their best to contribute to the common cause.

To conclude, all forces mentioned in the article by Fullan, Cuttress, and Kilcher (2005) are necessary for the successful implementation of the organizational change. However, those four that I have discussed above seem to be the backbone for the others.

References

(2012). Web.

Fullan, M., Cuttress, C., & Kilcher, A. (2005). 8 Forces for Leaders of Change. Journal of Sustainable Development, 26(4), 54-64.

Haycock, K. (2001). Closing the Achievement Gap. Educational Leadership, 58(6), 6-11.

How to Measure the Impact of Change. (2006). Web.

Svitak, A. (2012). . Web.

Winerman, L. (2011). Closing the achievement gap: Could a 15-minute intervention boost ethnic-minority student achievement? Monitor on Psychology, 42(8), 36.

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