what are the challenges of curriculum implementation

The third year supported teachers’ flexible enactment of the adopted curricula. Furthermore, leaders’ inconsistent messaging about the goals of previous waves of SBR led to unintended consequences: Teachers either found ways to fit new curricula into their traditional teaching paradigms or focused too much on the messaging of the accountability system and narrowed the curriculum to target tested content (Coburn et al., 2016). Exacerbating this issue is the second adaptive challenge of competing messaging around the instructional values promoted by the district. However, measures were suggested to limit the challenges towards curriculum implementation in order for the SMTs and teachers It also helps to adaptively uncover some of the root causes behind teachers’ issues with these technical resources, as some of these root causes address teachers’ mindsets about student ability and cultural interests (i.e., the adaptive challenge of speaking the unspeakable) and the labor of differentiation (i.e., the adaptive challenge of oversimplifying complex problems). For example, Chingos and Whitehurst (2012) argue that designing high-quality instructional materials is easy, quick, and inexpensive; changing instructional practice, however, requires far more than getting high-quality materials in the hands of teachers. Relatedly, leaders and teachers alike described differentiation as providing students with technical intervention programs and resources, with little mention of teachers taking the time to individually understand students’ interests and needs and leveraging this knowledge when designing the learning environment (Salend, 2015; Tomlinson & Moon, 2013). Teacher implementation of college- and career-readiness standards: Links among policy, instruction, challenges, and resources, Mind the gaps: Differences in how teachers, principals, and districts experience college- and career-readiness policies, Responding to the challenge of new standards, Varying teacher expectations and standards: Curriculum differentiation in the age of standards-based reform, Policy is not enough: Language and the interpretation of state standards, Mathematics curriculum effects on student achievement in California, Alignment of the intended, planned, and enacted curriculum in general and special education and its relation to student achievement, Access, activation, and influence: How brokers mediate social capital among professional development providers, Classroom experiences with new curriculum materials during the implementation of performance standards in mathematics: A case study of teachers coping with change, The substantive and symbolic consequences of a District’s standards-based curriculum, How do states implement college-and career-readiness standards? However, most of the district and school leadership strategies documented in the educational reform literature tend exclusively toward technical approaches to change (Theoharis, 2007; Trujillo, 2013), which have limited impact on issues that require adaptive attention. Adaptive leadership is a theoretical framework that is embraced in many leadership sectors, though with little empirical evidence to solidify its claims (Dugan, 2017). We triangulated leaders’ perspectives of the adaptive challenges with those of their teachers, whose perceptions shed light on the underlying reasons behind these implementation challenges, and areas of curriculum implementation that seemed promising or successful. Orrington leaders have recently started to promote and support co-teaching teams to better provide differentiated instruction to their special needs students. If leaders leverage adaptive strategies that include experiments with new coaching and co-teaching structures, then their curriculum culture will also start to incorporate adaptive behaviors, where leaders and educators work together to continuously improve standards-aligned instruction in service of enhancing student achievement. First of all, Mr. Simpson realizes that he will have to do some careful mapping, or determining how the curriculum will fit within the calendar of the school year. . 94 lessons Many of the barriers to SBR represent adaptive challenges, given that the task of making “major adjustments to the content teachers teach and the rigor by which they teach it is uncharted territory for classroom instructors and for school and district leaders to support” (Supovitz, 2015, p. 8). Each interview was recorded and transcribed verbatim. Other adaptive leadership challenges were particularly salient in the context of educators’ overreliance on the technical curricular resources as the primary vehicles for engaging instruction and differentiation. This role is important given that educational leaders are often teachers’ main sources of knowledge on standards-based instruction (Supovitz et al., 2016) and set the tone for the type of culture around curriculum use (Ylimaki, 2012). and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you. The last feature, work avoidance, reflects adaptive challenges that seem so threatening to the process of change, that the response is to deliberately avoid addressing the challenge. We then read through the descriptive codes and applied the framework of the four features of adaptive leadership challenges to understand the adaptive barriers to implementing curricula. Most of the district and school leaders across the four districts touted the rigors of their curriculum, the engaging nature of the materials, and the built-in intervention components of their curriculum as characteristics that would support changes to teachers’ practice. that [drove staff] nuts because our kids are not getting the whole story behind it . credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level. In sum, adaptive curricular challenges frequently manifest for leaders seeking to develop a curricular infrastructure to support teachers’ implementation of the standards due to the difficulties inherent in creating, adopting, and enacting new curricula on a large scale (Koedel et al., 2017; Polikoff, 2018; Remillard & Taton, 2015). These concerns represent adaptive challenges facing educational leaders, who need to help teachers be “creative with the standards” if they feel that their curriculum is not “always exciting or unengaging to the kids” (teacher interview, Palisades) rather than faulting the curriculum for their own unengaging instruction. ORCID iDsKatie Pak https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2264-9420, Erica Saldívar García https://orcid.org/0000-0002-6559-1695. Within each domain, we also looked for variability of patterns based on district context. Teaching and learning resources 4. As with any curriculum developed for schools, there are several challenges facing the implementation of the ACCC in all of Australia’s 9,450 primary and secondary schools. Many challenges were linked to the need to refine or acquire of curriculum fidelity to a new phonics program, which created a need to identify barriers preventing full curriculum implementation. It is a policy and technical agreement with the people as it consists of the expectations of the society (IBE, 2013). Another teacher in Orrington also stated that because “this generation of kids” is more prone to “ADHD [attention deficit hyperactivity disorder],” with a lot more “that are a little bit on the spectrum,” they are “not ready” for the rigors of their curriculum. Mr. Simpson takes care to try to end units before vacations as well. Find out about Lean Library here, If you have access to journal via a society or associations, read the instructions below. We collected qualitative case study data as part of a larger research study conducted by the Center on Standards, Alignment, Instruction, and Learning (C-SAIL), a federally funded center that investigated how policymakers and practitioners approached the implementation of their state’s ELA and math standards. In this study, we analyze case studies of four districts where new English Language Arts and math curricula were recently adopted to help align teachers’ practice with their state’s English Language Arts and math standards. Addressing the challenges. Geographic limitations: Geography influences a number of factors that can challenge program implementation and operations, such as isolation and weather. LAURA M. DESIMONE is director of research in the College of Education and Human Development at the University of Delaware and a professor in the School of Education in Educational Statistics and Research Methods and in the Joseph R. Biden, Jr. School of Public Policy & Administration. (, Floden, R. E., Richmond, G., Andrews, D. C. (, Heifetz, R. A., Grashow, A., Linsky, M. (, Koedel, C., Li, D., Polikoff, M. S., Hardaway, T., Wrabel, S. L. (, Kurz, A., Elliott, S. N., Wehby, J. H., Smithson, J. L. (, Leithwood, K., Louis, K. S., Anderson, S., Wahlstom, K. (, Miles, M. B., Huberman, A. M., Saldaña, J. We also showcased some of the adaptive leadership interventions found in two districts, where leaders worked with their instructional coaches and teachers to learn how to better support teachers’ enactment of the written and intended curriculum for all learners. In one network, teachers are not allowed to construct their own resources and have to “sneak stuff in” (teacher interview, Palisades) due to their regional leader’s mandate to follow the adopted curriculum with fidelity. Table 1 contains the number of study participants across the four case study sites. Challenges in Curriculum Implementation Curriculum is a political agreement; it outlines the government’s national agenda (IBE, 2013). To unlock this lesson you must be a Study.com Member. While there were teachers across all districts who appreciated the rigor of the provided curriculum for exposing them to the demands of the standards, there were also teachers who expressed that their students did not have the “prerequisite skills, prior knowledge, or background experience to keep up with the pacing” in the curricula (teacher interview, Orrington). Mr. Simpson heartily agrees. Last year we had a walkthrough in February and May, and what we were looking for, the indicators really went up. This improvement journey requires a blend of technical and adaptive leadership, given the technical and adaptive aspects of the challenges that educators experience when learning to implement the standards. When analyzing data for this study, we first conducted an unstructured read through of each of the district leaders’, principals’, and coaches’ transcripts to get a sense of the leadership contexts, vision, and strategies. There was an acknowledgement that teachers had not received PD to identify when students master the standards and what mastery looks like (teacher focus group, Maple Town). Brief Introduction about the Current Curriculum in China Education and care for children between the ages of 3 and 6 are primarily provided in kindergartens So when you give teachers this workbook, you kind of give them this wheelchair and all of a sudden you’re not teaching them actually how to walk, you’re just kind of scooting around in this wheelchair and their muscles are atrophying. To ensure efficiency of the school system and the development of 21stcentury skills, our schools need state of the art teachers and classrooms as … CHALLENGES TO CURRICULUM IMPLEMENTATION: REDUCING THE GAP BETWEEN THE ASPIRED AND ITS IMPLEMENTATION THROUGH CHANGE MANAGEMENT NG SOO BOON, PHD CURRICULUM DEVELOPMENT DIVISION [email protected]-between-the-aspired-and-its-implementation-through-change-management Abstract The development of school curriculum … . All of the resources listed under Benchmarking and Design and Implementation Help provide inspiration, information and tools to assist in overcoming these challenges. However, they can be found in Hefeitz et al. Part of this challenge is that when implementing new curriculum, education leaders may too easily overemphasize the importance of implementing curriculum with fidelity and omit the importance of building relationships with students, understanding the impacts of trauma, and fostering student engagement through socioemotional learning (teacher focus group, Orrington). Challenges in Curriculum Implementation Curriculum is a political agreement; it outlines the government’s national agenda (IBE, 2013). there are major curriculum challenges facing SMTs and teachers in managing the curriculum implementation in their schools. In Orrington, where blended learning was a priority for the district, all principals referred to the intervention programs available on their students’ one-to-one devices as mechanisms for differentiation: “We were using a program for a while where you could take the same article and it looks identical but it’s at different Lexile levels” (principal interview, Orrington). In Orrington, two teachers in a focus group engaged in conversation about their students “not [being] as smart as they used to be,” as they have “gotten dumber in math” because the curriculum failed to provide sufficient practice opportunities for mathematical skills. It needs the … The purpose of the embedded multiple case study was to gain an in-depth understanding of the challenges and innovations related to standards implementation from the perspective of school-based professionals as they pertained to our Center’s key focus areas. Create a link to share a read only version of this article with your colleagues and friends. Factor 1: Curriculum implementation must be done the way it was designed to be done (i.e., with fidelity); in a consistent manner; and with challenges to students to … It often helps to consult with learning specialists or guidance counselors to find out what adjustments you might make. Quiz & Worksheet - Curriculum Implementation Steps & Issues, Over 83,000 lessons in all major subjects, {{courseNav.course.mDynamicIntFields.lessonCount}}, Curriculum Planning Process & Development, Multicultural Curriculum & Instruction Development, Refining Curriculum To Promote Student Learning, GACE Curriculum & Instruction (300): Practice & Study Guide, Biological and Biomedical (Teacher interview, Palisades). These included lack of resources, inadequate training and heavy workloads. If you have the appropriate software installed, you can download article citation data to the citation manager of your choice. The curriculum challenged teachers to raise the rigor of their instruction. These adaptive leadership examples might in turn cultivate a curriculum culture that is adaptive in nature. This type of adaptive work should be more widespread, ongoing, and directly tied to the root causes of the challenges that cause teachers to rely too much on technical resources for differentiation. But it’s like we’re scared to do certain things. Thus, our conversations with leaders and teachers mostly focused on training on the technical resources (i.e., materials and PD) themselves, with a nascent focus on adaptive approaches to cultivating the professional skills that teachers needed to effectively (or selectively) utilize the curriculum. Some global and emerging issues, such as family life education. As he begins to implement his curriculum, he sees that some students will require modifications, or altered goals that are either more or less advanced than those of their average peers. In view of the different system in Nigeria, there is need to put things straight. Create your account, Already registered? One of Mr. Simpson's colleagues points out that it is hard to implement a curriculum properly without knowing the specific students you will be teaching! In response to this dissatisfaction, and with the enhanced flexibility of the Every Student Succeeds Act (Edgerton, 2019), educational leaders, foundations, and researchers have recently returned to focus on curriculum as a major lever for standards implementation (Polikoff, 2018). This theory of change has been the cornerstone of state and federal policy since at least 2001 when No Child Left Behind was passed. While these technical considerations are necessary, curriculum implementation requires a blend of technical and adaptive approaches that come with learning to lead complex curricular reform efforts. Access to society journal content varies across our titles. To tackle these challenges adaptively, educational leaders need to surface some of the root causes behind educators’ mindsets around student ability levels and differentiation; invite conversation around the “nondiscussables” such as implicit biases; collaborate with their educators on designing new systems, structures, and beliefs that better support rigorous and differentiated instruction; and stay focused on this adaptive learning instead of turning the work over to technical programs. You’re the ESL teacher, I trust you. The curriculum in Cahill received some criticism from teachers in at least two schools who found the reading passages to be “extremely long and kind of dry,” or for only showcasing short excerpts from longer novels where students had “no idea where the character was coming from” because they had not read the whole novel. Through the reliance on standards-aligned curriculum and PD provided by these curriculum publishers, educational leaders sought to shape teachers as technical users of the curriculum. The content is solely the responsibility of the author and does not necessarily represent the official views of the Institute of Education Sciences or the U.S. Department of Education. View or download all content the institution has subscribed to. . Leave a Comment In recent years, many states have dispatched new versions of curriculum documents and a lot of work has been done to clean up and more clearly articulate standards. 10. He strives to remain flexible and make adjustments in his map over time. Given our qualitative design and the small number of districts in our sample, we are unable to draw causal links among leadership activities, teachers’ instruction, and student learning. Finally, while our data suggest the importance of adaptive leadership behaviors in these districts, the districts—and the leaders in them—of course vary along many dimensions that might also explain differences in outcomes. Even though district administrators believed that the messaging was, “Here are our grade level expectations, here are the resources, but if you want to use other resources, make sure those are best for your kids and you,” this messaging had become convoluted across the six schools in the study. Culture is the shared pattern of espoused beliefs, underlying assumptions, and artifacts found across an organization (Schein, 2010), and it dictates the ways in which individuals behave with regard to reform initiatives. If you have access to a journal via a society or association membership, please browse to your society journal, select an article to view, and follow the instructions in this box. At the start of the co-teaching relationships, teachers questioned “when to insert myself” when planning differentiated instruction, and it “took a couple years” to forge teamwork norms and adapt to each other’s collaboration styles (teacher interview, Orrington). that was where my standards knowledge was coming from.” When this coach identified curriculum misalignments due to recent revisions to the Ohio state standards, she realized that the staff did not have the skill set to “critique the curriculum and make the appropriate adjustments so that it’s fitting the current standards.” Observations of misaligned curriculum were frequent in Palisades as well, where one principal remarked that even if teachers implement the math curriculum with fidelity, they will still be teaching only 50% of the standards. 1. C-SAIL examined standards implementation with a focus on curricular reform, PD, assessment and accountability, and supports for students with disabilities (SWDs) and ELs from 2015 to 2020 (see Desimone et al., 2019). As one principal in Maple Town acknowledged, their previous reading curriculum was intentionally unscripted to allow the integration of student engagement strategies. Our embedded multiple case study reflects Yin’s (2017) design, where our interviews with district officials in each state provided the context for the study, each school was a case, and our embedded unit of analysis was school-level actors (principals, teachers, and instructional coaches). As teachers, we are sometimes tasked with implementing a curriculum that has already been developed. A new strategic initiative will never get off the ground without the proper training … It needs the support of both the Instead, we are showing one example of how to apply adaptive leadership theory, which is widely used in sectors outside of education, to a lingering problem of practice in education—how to effectively support teachers’ practice using externally adopted curricula as their framework for teaching and learning. If leaders act in primarily technical ways, the curriculum culture of their district or school will mostly espouse technical behaviors while adaptive challenges simmer under the surface. . This district also hired part-time curriculum specialists to learn how to provide the instruction that filled these gaps, with one principal calling the teachers the “doctors” while these curriculum specialists collaborated with them as the “nurses.” By revamping the district infrastructure to incorporate new coaching practices that iterated over time based on what they learned to be teachers’ curriculum needs, Cahill leaders demonstrated an adaptive mindset. Curriculum implementation often requires access to robust materials, and not every school has this access. 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