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In Event: Roundtable Session (Tuesday VII)
In Refereed Round-Table Session: Education reform and privatization in diverse contexts
Within the scenario of educational public service reform, this paper is going to compare the ‘ShuangShi Service’ in Beijing and test preparation and remedial service under the school reform strategy of privatization in the U.S., and explicate on what should to be done to propel educational public service reform.
‘ShuangShi Service’ program, launched in the December 2016, was designed to provide online tutoring service to students from junior middle schools of relatively low level located in suburban area of Beijing. All the online services were free of charge and given by in-service teachers from public schools in Beijing. The teachers were selected according to few substantive rules and paid by a fund allocated by the Beijing Municipal Education Commission. The online services were performed on a web-based platform called ‘ZhihuiXueBan’, which was made to support personalized learning by matching teachers’ specialty and students’ needs, while providing learning resources in various forms. Until now, this program has been going on for nearly two years. Under NCLB, student test preparation service and remedial service were financially supported by federal fund and encouraged by allowing school districts to contract with nonprofit and for-profit providers with the aim to help students whose performance were poor on standardized tests or give test preparation service. ( Burch P, Donovan J, Steinberg M.,2006)
The framework by which the comparison in this study would be deployed was inspired by researches on public sector reform.( Bank W.,2008., Boer H F D, Enders J, Leisyte L.,2010s) The roles played by government, schools, teachers, education research center and technical companies, and the accountability mechanisms by which the service agents have been organized are aspects the comparison are going to be unfolded. The data used for comparisons are mainly from open publication literature.
The implication of this comparative study may shed light on the possible directions for the public service reform to follow. First, government should take more positive role to create resources agreeable with students’ individual learning style to promote learning as a way to address education equality. Second, government should impose specific regulation concerning the security of students and teachers’ private information when regulating the online education program. Third, schools must insist on the public value while be actively learning from other kinds of educational service providers. Schools should take account of the online courses when making the curriculum plan, so a more creative curriculum profile can be expected.
Fourth, when teachers giving lectures online, the roles of teachers extend beyond the classroom and teachers have greater professional responsibility. More resources are supposed to support and help teachers’ professional development. Also, the schools should make reasonable human resource arrangement concerning the online and offline teaching tasks. Fifth, a flexible service team consisting of government officials, school administrators, teachers and parents should be built up with the service to students as the central task. Last, an accountability system need be constructed based on the characteristics of online teaching and learning.