Improving policy processes; advancing the development of the teacher feedback loop

Year: 2000


Type of paper: Abstract refereed

The need for policy actors to work collaboratively during the policy process receives increasing attention in the literature. A more interactive and iterative approach throughout the policy process involving a broader spectrum of policy actors is indicated. Merely working better to enact policies is insufficient; the processes through which policy is developed are in need of review and improvement. While the values and goals of policy actors typically differ, often there is a shared recognition that action is required to address a problem. It is essential to recognise and act upon this common ground in order to strengthen policy actors' commitment to positive policy outcomes.

This paper draws on a case study of policy implementation in the Tasmanian government school system. While the data were gathered chiefly during the enactment of the policy, it became increasingly evident that the influence of the values and goals of those policy actors assigned responsibility for policy implementation should be considered before implementation officially commences. The study's findings support an expansion of teachers' policy roles. Indeed, failure to accord teachers with more influential policy roles may first, contribute to their increased feelings of alienation in the policy process and second, decrease policy effectiveness.