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Medium 9781475816457

The Essence of Education in a Secular Islamic Land: One Is as Free as Is Responsible

International Journal of Educational Ref Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Kemal Duruhan and Süleyman Nihat Şad

To connect, even if in your mind’s eye, today and when everything about Islam started, this article follows a chronological order of the educational aspect of the Islamic lifestyle, ending up with the most recent happenings, such as global terrorism, September 11, Turkey’s participation in the European Union as an Islamic nation, so-called democratic maneuvers in the Middle East, and so forth. The article deals with and emphasizes education in Islam and, especially, humanistic tenets of Islamic education in Turkish history, starting from long before the foundation of the young Turkish Republic by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.

Because most of the divine religions promise to offer what we human beings seek to have in this world and the other, it is inevitable for them to soak into the thinnest nerve of an individual and the smallest cells of society. That is why all such religions imply some certain doctrines for the individual and the society. These, of course, include rights and obligations, dos and don’ts, all for structuring an orderly and comfortable life in this world, thereby pledging one a turnkey for the other world. With Christianity and the Jewish religion, Islam has been the leading divine religion, accepted and obeyed by millions over a large geography since its declaration in the early 7th century. This article sheds light on some milestones in Islamic civilization, such as the golden age, the Abbasids, the Ottomans, and the rise of Western civilization from the viewpoint of education. This makes for more than 14 centuries full of myths and truths, de factos and de jures, wars and peaces, policies and politics.

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Medium 9781475811469

A Critical Review of Strategic Planning: Panacea for Public Education?

JOURNAL OF SCHOOL LEADERSHIP Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub


ABSTRACT: Many states, accrediting agencies, and the Interstate School Leaders Licensure Consortium have policies and standards mandating strategic planning for public schools. Planning in schools has become synonymous with strategic planning. However, alternative approaches to change exist that offer more effective solutions to school improvement. School processes are significantly different from those in the business environment from which strategic planning evolved. The coalescence of policy around a single planning form may not be in public education’s best interests. This article explores the limitations of the strategic model and the potential contributions of other planning models and lessons from contemporary “best practice.”

It would be difficult to find a K–12 public school that does not formally engage in some form of a planning process—at least in the United States. Planning in schools has become synonymous with what is commonly referred to as “strategic planning.” Many states and accrediting agencies have established policies that mandate a strategic planning process for public schools, thereby conveying the message that such a process is essential if a school is to be effective and efficient. In the absence of such external policy mandates, many districts create their own policies requiring strategic planning in their schools.

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Medium 9781475816440

Teaching for Democracy in Ukraine: Activity-Based Developmental and Dialogical Education

International Journal of Educational Ref Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Tetyana Koshmanova

The article addresses the issues of how cultural historical theory of activity can help design democratic teacher education classrooms aimed at developmental learning and dialogical, humanitarian thinking of students and prospective teachers. On the basis of retrospective analysis, I begin by summarizing activity-based approaches to educating teachers in Ukraine. Then I describe efforts to implement best practices of developmental and dialogical teaching. Finally, I provide implications of analyzed approaches for democratic teacher education practices.

Democratizing postcommunist educational systems within unstable economic and social contexts became an issue of stability in the Ukraine region. Recent events connected with the 2004 presidential elections in Ukraine sent a message to the world about people’s will for a future committed to democracy, freedom, and the rule of law. Recent educational reforms included structural reorganization of secondary schools and universities. During the complex transition to sovereignty, democracy, and market economy, Ukraine has taken steps to be compatible with European education systems. New courses, programs and projects, models and techniques of teaching and learning, and information technologies were introduced to make education flexible and open to student needs and multicultural society. Both public and private secondary, vocational, and higher educational institutions—colleges, lyceums, gymnasiums, and alternative schools of different levels—have appeared.

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Medium 9781475816389

The Organization and Administration of Special Services: Variations, Tensions, and Possibilities

International Journal of Educational Ref Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Lynn H. Doyle

Educational administrators are spending considerably more time and effort on issues involving special services for disadvantaged and special needs students than they have in the past (Burrello, 2003). In light of current school improvement initiatives to improve the academic success for all students, it is likely that this will even increase. Passage of No Child Left Behind and changes in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) indicate Congress’s commitment to reform teaching and learning. These laws now mandate that at-risk students and students with disabilities be included in high-stakes testing. Mandates such as these provide not only challenges, but also opportunities for local school districts to look at past practices differently and create new possibilities to restructure teaching and learning. If ever there was a time for administrators to be visionaries who can see new ways to use special services, it is now.

The array of special services is vast, and the manner in which these services are organized differs from district to district and from school to school (Zepeda & Langenbach, 1999). When discussing special services, educators typically mean those services that fall under three umbrella categories: (a) special education, (b) related services, and (c) pupil services (also called pupil personnel services or student services). Although special education typically refers to the 13 disability areas identified in IDEA, related services and pupil services are less clear. Related services are defined as:

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Medium 9781475819373

Book Review

Teacher Education and Practice Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

(Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2008), 350 pp., $36.95 (paper)


Issues of classroom management rank as one of the most significant topics in teacher preparation programs, and novice teachers often express concern about successfully managing the complex issues of the classroom (Browers & Tomic, 2000). In The Teacher’s Survival Guide: Real Classroom Dilemmas and Practical Solutions, Marc R. Major combines ideas about the creation of a positive classroom climate based on practical management strategies from classroom teachers. The purpose of The Teacher’s Survival Guide, according to Major, is to provide ideas and case studies about classroom management that save teachers “work and frustration” (p. ix), thus providing more time for teaching. This review evaluates The Teacher’s Survival Guide for use by novice and experienced teachers as well as teacher preparation programs.

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