The New Educational Privatization: Educational Contracting and High Stakes Accountability
The institutional landscape of K–12 educational contracting is fundamentally changing. Based on industry and district data, this study identifies three distinct shifts in the content and structure of interactions between suppliers of instructional goods and local school systems. These shifts include 1) elevation of test-related services and products, 2) increasing emphases on technology-based solutions. and 3) an expanding role for the state in spurring market activity. Drawing on a case study of district practice, the study provides evidence of how broader changes are influencing local contracting activities, and the dilemmas and responses generated by these pressures. The study suggests the need for new conceptual approaches to studying educational privatization that draw on the institutional analysis of organizations and also identifies critical questions for future research.
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