Democratization of decision-making processes and increased local involvement are mentioned regularly as desirable ways to proceed in education policy reform. Nevertheless, the limited publications examining reforms for more democratic organization of school districts have tended to focus on isolated examples and very specific aspects of that reform; and while, more recently, scholars have argued for the democratization of education generally in response to global trends, what is missing from the debate is a comparison of specific reforms in education designed to allow for system-wide democratization and authentic participation. This article reviews the existing literature investigating democratic school system reform in Porto Alegre, Brazil and Chicago, USA - both chosen because they were uniquely able to achieve system-wide reform for more democratic involvement. The article discusses the reforms in terms of their context, specific policy mechanisms, successes, and limitations.
|Number of pages
|Research in Comparative and International Education
|Published - 2010
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