Professional Development for Curriculum Change

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Although various developed curriculum considers key standards during formulation, different assumptions within the developed curriculum are made despite the fact that they are fundamental factors of facilitating teaching and learning process. The curriculum is regarded as the center of all learning institutions. Consequently, all schools and institutions of higher learning cannot efficiently operate without carefully formulated curriculum (Glatthorn & Glatthorn, 2015). The curriculum is an integral part of formal education in that it identifies the needs of society and carefully outlines the means of accomplishing these needs. Consequently, in a broad sense, the curriculum is the total of all learning experiences of an individual both in school and in the society. Primarily, comprehensive requirements and key objectives ought to be considered during formulation of any teaching curriculum (Crawford, 2012). The two standards that will be discussed in this essay are standard two and standard five. This study seeks to identify curricular issue based on two standards and describe these issues. Moreover, the analysis will outline the steps to improve the established issues based upon the characteristics of two of the five standards. 

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Among the issues for standard two indicators is the fact that the aspect of the standard measurability is more emphasized than the processes, details, and means of accomplishing the desired standards. Although the standards indicators are specific, they are designed to achieve the outcome of the curriculum without considering the process and the details that lead to the achievement of the desired outcome (Glatthorn & Glatthorn, 2015). When the standards are formulated in a way that the interest is to achieve the desired outcome, they leave the curriculum implementer especially teachers out of the process. As such, the teacher plays a passive role in the process of curriculum implementation yet they are supposed to be fully involved. The teacher has no direct role in creating the activities that they find significant for the teaching and learning process (Crawford, 2012). For instance, the fifth indicator emphasizes that the system should be contextually responsive to state, national and other related expectation. However, the indicator does not provide the role of the teacher in the implementation and the mechanism that is to be put in place to accomplish such standards. 

According to the audit standard based on control, both teachers and learners should be accountable through playing relevant roles and responsibilities to facilitate a learning process (Frase et al., 2013). Correspondingly, the established curriculum ought to be tested, taught and aligned in a way that all the stakeholders in the teaching and learning process are involved.  For efficient productivity, the resource allocated to the teaching and learning process should not only be aligned with the curriculum but must be maximally utilized. Another example is the fact that the indicators number seven specifies that there should be an explicit direction for the both professional and superintendent staff (Wiles, 2014). Accordingly, the teams are left with no room for formulating any interventions or improvising any input into the learning process. The reason is that the standard indicator is clear that explicit directions are definite and ought to be provided. Besides, the indicators are set in that they do not identify the specific piecemeal changes that are to be conducted but instead are set in a way that they are addressed to the needs of the entire system. Accordingly, the indicators though measurable may not be valid and reliable pointers that teacher as a facilitator of teaching and learning process can accomplish with ease (Crawford, 2012).

These indicators can be improved in various steps. Firstly, they should be stated in not only measurable terms but should outline the details of the entire process that is to be accomplished (Frase et al., 2013). The role of the teacher and that of the learners should be illustrated because the valid and reliable outcomes may not be achieved without allowing the teacher and the learners to participate in the teaching and learning process (Glatthorn & Glatthorn, 2015). Although the indicator number three indicates that students’ effectiveness is addressed, it may not be easily achievable without the illustrated role of the students being established in measurable terms. Secondly, there should be equitable access to the curriculum through teacher and learner involvement. Correspondingly, there should be effective ways of curriculum delivery by developing models that not only involve teachers but allows them to be innovative and develop their ways of fulfilling the standards of the curriculum (Crawford, 2012). That way, the teachers, and learners will own up the established standards and fully participate in achieving its intended outcome. Thirdly, the established standard indicators should be based on the local and homegrown initiative such that the outcomes of the learning process will enable the learner to solve the local issues and challenges that the society faces (Frase et al., 2013). These initiatives will enable the local community to be more cohesive and united toward achieving the goals that they are set to accomplish.

Among the curriculum issue identified for the indicator for standard five is the fact standard indicators do not comprehensively advocate for social reconstruction. According to the audit standard of connectivity and equity, the curriculum is supposed not only to be predictable from one level to the other but should coordinate vertically and horizontally (Glatthorn & Glatthorn, 2015). Unless the standard indicators identify and recognize the school as an institution that facilitates societal reconstruction, the education system will be seen as a new and neutral institution that is not linked to the community at all. The influence of the local institutions, state and the national government in education should be felt in any educations system because schools do not exist in isolation (Crawford, 2012). Simultaneously, sufficient school reforms may not be attained unless the established curriculum if planned in a way that it addresses the existing inequitable social, political and economic relationship. According to the audit standard that predicts that nature of curriculum connectivity, the standards of the curriculum should evaluate equitable access to the curriculum. Learners irrespective of their social, political or economic status, they should be unified and equalized by the established curriculum (Frase et al., 2013). The argument is that schools, as well as all the institutions of high learning, cannot be neutral to the challenges that are facing the community. 

One of the common standard indicators states that there are a series of interventions that are to be maintained because they have worked for a long time. However, such a move may limit the ability of the curriculum to address the contemporary needs of the community as well as the emerging issues that affect the teaching learning process (Wiles, 2014). Likewise, another common indicator insists on maintaining school facilities and placing necessary measures to track school cost and the results that have been attained. While these standards are significant for accountability as required by control audit standards, they are systemic and compliance oriented and may not be fully achieved without sufficient school society integration through social reconstruction (Frase et al., 2013). The standard indicators also maintain that systems should be supported, adequate financial planning applied to mitigate cost, continued improvement, and attainment of better results. These measures fulfill audit standard that values productivity through efficient resource allocation. Conversely, they do not adequately state the actual piecemeal measurable parameters that should be put in place to ensure the success of such controls (Crawford, 2012). Similarly, there are gaps regarding the role of the surrounding community and the involvement of the entire community in the attainment of these curriculum standards as a way of promoting school and community integration.  

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Various steps may be adapted to improve such curriculum issues so as to enhance inclusiveness of the curriculum standards. Firstly, the curriculum standards should indicate specific measures that are to be taken to enhance the cost and results relationship (Glatthorn & Glatthorn, 2015). The standard indicators have already indicated that there are existing planned series of interventions that are working and which ought to be promoted. These working series of interventions aimed at enhances students performances ought to be improved through maintaining viable data and tracking performances through enacting specific and measurable controls (Frase et al., 2013). Secondly, the curriculum should be designed in a way that it is inclusive and can address the needs of the learners and the needs of the entire society. Such improvements may be achieved through placing the measure that identifying the existing inequitable social, political and economic relationship and setting social reconstruction measures that bring the school and community together (Glatthorn & Glatthorn, 2015). Although such improvements may be costly and demanding for the curriculum developers, the outcome of these improvements measures will have the positive impact on the school and the surrounding community. Thirdly, the systemic and compliance oriented standard indicators should be improved by adequately stating them in original piecemeal and measurable terms form that would ensure the success of such controls. That way, the curriculum standards specified through carefully selected standard indicators will evaluate whether the needs of the learners all the stakeholders at community, state, and national level have been satisfied.                 

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  1. Crawford, J. (2012). Aligning your curriculum to the common core state standards. Thousand Oaks, Calif: Corwin Press.   
  2. Frase, L. E., English, F. W., & Poston, W. K. (2013). The curriculum management audit: Improving school quality. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield Education. 
  3. Glatthorn, A. A., & Glatthorn, A. A. (2015). Curriculum leadership: Strategies for development and implementation. Thousand Oaks: SAGE Publications, Inc.
  4. Wiles, J. (2014). Leading curriculum development. Thousand Oaks, Calif: Corwin Press.
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