OECD Education Working Papers

This series is designed to make available to a wider readership selected studies drawing on the work of the OECD Directorate for Education. Authorship is usually collective, but principal writers are named. The papers are generally available only in their original language (English or French) with a short summary available in the other.

English, French

Moving towards more school autonomy in Austria

Refocusing the role of school supervision

Prepared for a CERI (Centre for Educational Research and Innovation) Strategic Education Governance Learning Seminar, this working paper analyses an ongoing reform in Austria to change the traditional sector-specific “supervision” of different school types to a system of quality management of all schools in the region and to introduce a new external school evaluation body. The paper identifies four pertinent areas for lasting success of the reform: a new focus on quality management and monitoring; a restructuring of existing sector-specific school supervision bodies; creating a shared vision of quality and educational goals; and ensuring reliable and useful knowledge. Employing a complexity perspective to governance, the paper highlights that long-term sustainability of the reform requires a compelling narrative clarifying how school supervision supports education improvement and how supervision fits into wider education policy. The analysis further underlines the principle of co-creation in developing quality frameworks and establishing the methodology for the new external school evaluation body; and also for school leaders and school supervisors to drive the development of their new professional identities. Finally, to provide useful knowledge for schools and the system, the new external evaluation body should focus on the improvement of teaching and learning.


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