Management of Schools

  1. What do you see as the pros and cons of site-based management?

PROS of site based management

  • The administrative staff can tailor fit their budget to meet the dynamic needs of their specific community.  They can implement changes that transform teaching and learning to fit their population. The power over their budget, staffing, and curriculum are in the hands of site-based decision-makers.
  • The principal is able to simultaneously lead and share power and responsibility with site based staff who are better able to make decisions with local needs in mind.
  • Decision making moves quickly instead of waiting for it to pass through the bureaucratic decision making process in a centralized school system. 
  • In a centralized school system employees and students may feel  “part of the machine” rather than a valued individual in the organization with a one size fits all approach to teaching and learning. 
  • The administrative staff can select employment candidates that ‘fit’ their building culture.
  • Stake holders feel more empowered in the decision making process as far as the unique needs of their academic environment.

CONS of site based management

  • De-centralizing school management leaves much open to interpretation of policy and procedure which leaves the school system vulnerable in management.  Interpretation for following policy and procedure can differ from site to site causing discrepancy in services for students across the county.
  • A more centralized structure can help organizations control costs, quality, efficiency, messaging, and overall operations.  In particular, budget effectiveness can vary from site to site causing equity issues across a county. 
  • Administrators can be held accountable to their staff and the community for the way they allocate funds which can create conflicts between the teachers and the administrator if they have differences in views of how money should be spent. Centralizing the budget system will remove the conflict between these parties.
  • There are school based sites that have a lot of community involvement as part of the site based management; there are others that lack parental and/or staff involvement so are all the stake holders REALLY involved? How does site-based management create a sense of community in schools that draw from a large geographic area, as do most secondary schools; and in schools in districts with choice? Parents and staff at such schools may not have access to transportation or time to participate in school decision making.

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