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Learning the other : the evolving identity of a merged school

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Item Summary

Title: Learning the other : the evolving identity of a merged school
Authors: Hussey, Edna Lardizabal
Keywords: school culture
Issue Date: Aug 2014
Publisher: [Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [August 2014]
Abstract: The consolidation and merger of schools has been occurring at an alarming rate across the U.S. Public and private schools are confronted with yearly budget shortfalls, reductions in student enrollment, threats of closure due to enrollment or poor academic performance, tuition increases in private schools to offset operational costs. For some schools, the only option to survive in the educational market is consolidation with another school.
The autoethnography looks at the the merger of two Hawaiʻi independent schools and the identity crisis encountered by both schools from 2004-2014, the impact and challenges of the merger on the school community, and the ways in which the school's identity is evolving. Assuming a school's identity is shaped by many factors--its historical and cultural context, its sense of place, the community's values, and the individuals who comprise the community, the study analyzes two schools' unique experience of survival, merger, assimilation, adaptation, and transformation. The questions framing this study are: What happens when two schools merge? How is school identity affected?; In the merger of schools, how is school identity negotiated? ; Of what consequence is institutional identity?
Through semi-structured interviews with participants representing school constituencies from the acquired and acquiring schools, data was analyzed for broad categories or themes based on their retrospective accounts. The autoethenographer, a key participant in the merger process and ten-year period following the merger, also provides an insiderʻs perspective that lends credibility and authenticity to the autoethnography.
Among the key findings are the critical importance of the articulation of the school's assumptions, beliefs, and values about learning and teaching in creating school culture; the impact of authentic leadership; an understanding that organizational change must be systemic, sustained over time, and supported through a commitment of school resources; a recognition of the importance of sustained professional development led by teachers across all grade levels; and the acknowledgement that the impact of the loss of school identity cannot be overestimated.
Description: D.Ed. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2014.
Includes bibliographical references.
Rights: All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
Appears in Collections:Ed.D. - Professional Practice

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