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International Review of Education

, Volume 35, Issue 2, pp 179–195 | Cite as

Why educational reforms fail: A comparative analysis

  • George Psacharopoulos
Articles

Abstract

The paper reviews a number of educational policy statements of East African countries ranging from combining education with production at the primary level, to the financing of higher education. An assessment is made of how successful the policies have been in achieving their original intention. The paper's conclusion is that policy outcomes are far from matching expectations, mainly because of insufficient or no implementation. The reason most educational policies are not implemented is that they are vaguely stated and the financing implications are not always worked out. Another reason for failure is that the content of a policy is based on an empirically unsustained theoretical relationship between instruments and outcomes. The paper makes a plea for the formulation of more concrete, feasible and implementable policies based on documented cause-effect relationships.

Keywords

High Education African Country Policy Statement Educational Policy Educational Reform 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Zusammenfassung

In dem Artikel werden eine Reihe von erziehungspolitischen Aussagen ostafrikanischer Länder untersucht. Sie reichen von der Verbindung der Erziehung mit der Produktion auf der Grundstufe bis hin zur Finanzierung der Hochschulausbildung. Es wird eine Bestandsaufnahme gemacht hinsichtlich des Erfolgs, der den erziehungspolitischen Programmen beim Erreichen ihrer ursprünglichen Ziele beschieden war, wobei man zu dem Schluß kommt, daß die Resultate der Programme hauptsächlich dadurch, daß diese nicht oder nur unzureichend durchgeführt wurden, weit davon entfernt sind, die Erwartungen zu erfüllen. Der Grund dafür, daß die meisten erziehungspolitischen Programme nicht durchgeführt werden, liegt darin, daß sie nur vage umrissen und die finanziellen Auswirkungen nicht immer ausgearbeitet sind. Ein weiterer Grund für ihr Fehlschlagen liegt darin, daß der Inhalt eines Programms auf einer empirisch unhaltbaren theoretischen Beziehung zwischen Mitteln und Resultaten basiert. In dem Artikel wird daher für die Formulierung konkreterer, geeigneterer und durchführbarerer Programme plädiert, die auf bereits belegten Beziehungen von Ursache und Wirkung beruhen.

Résumé

Le présent article examine quelques déclarations de pays de l'Afrique orientale relatives à la politique éducative, allant d'un système combiné d'éducation et de travail productif dans l'enseignement primaire, au financement de l'enseignement supérieur. Une analyse est effectuée pour savoir combien ces politiques ont réussi à mettre en oeuvre leur objectif premier. Cet article conclut que les résultats de ces politiques sont loin de répondre aux exigences, en raison essentiellement d'une mise en oeuvre insuffisante, voire nulle. La raison pour laquelle la plupart des politiques éducatives ne sont pas appliquées est due au fait qu'elles sont vaguement formulées et les implications financières rarement élaborées. La seconde raison de cet échec est que le contenu d'une politique se fonde sur une relation théorique entre instruments et résultats qui n'a pas été vérifiée empiriquement. Cet article plaide en faveur de politiques concrètes, réalisables et applicables fondées sur un rapport de cause à effet bien documenté.

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • George Psacharopoulos

There are no affiliations available

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