Curriculum policy and instructional planning: Teachers’ autonomy across various school contexts
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionDieudé, A. & Prøitz, T. S. (2022). Curriculum policy and instructional planning: Teachers’ autonomy across various school contexts. European Educational Research Journal, 1-20. https://doi.org/10.1177/14749041221075156
International trends promoting school diversity and choice have reshaped education across Europe, leading towards a multiplicity in ownership structures and varied governance configurations. More recently, this can also be seen in European countries with a long history of state-owned and governed public schools, such as in the Nordic states. The aim of this article is to explore autonomy and curriculum control in teacher’s work in public and independent schools within a country context where there are long traditions of ‘one public school for all’. The article draws on interviews with school leaders and teachers on a Waldorf school, an IB school, and a Norwegian public school as well as analysis of local school documents. The analysis shows that varying school contexts present both different and overlapping characteristics of curriculum control and teacher autonomy. All schools have accommodated to educational outcome governed regimes, however, teacher autonomy in the school context appears to differ. Teacher autonomy is more related to teachers’ practices, not the educational outcomes required. The study shows how policies intending for the standardisation of schooling may work in conflict with policy intentions of educational diversity, provided by independent schools of different character.