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Eiles, C. (1996). Managing schools: an analytic account of how local education authorities and school governing bodies run schools. Free Associations, 6(2):192-204.

(1996). Free Associations, 6(2):192-204

Managing schools: an analytic account of how local education authorities and school governing bodies run schools

Clive Eiles

At many points in our society we rely on professionals and their professionalism. We depend on the specialised knowledge and capabilities of doctors and nurses, lawyers, teachers, and many others. This dependent relationship produces problems. For the professionals it is a problem of dual loyalties, to their profession and to their clients. For us as clients our problem is to accept this dependency, and simultaneously to retain responsibility for ourselves. This is not a new issue, but it is particularly salient now as the government pursues its policy of breaking the power of the professions and empowering the client. This article is primarily about the relationship of citizens and professionals in the management of schools, which has been part of my own working concern for some years. I hope that it may resonate with other people's experiences of other professions, and stimulate their thoughts.

Synopsis of the Argument

The Education Reform Act of 1988 has radically changed the way that schools are managed, and the ways in which each relates to the Local Education Authority (LEA) of which it forms a part.

The relationship as it existed before the changes can be explained and illuminated by the concepts of: splitting, projection, extractive introjection, and basic assumption activity, in particular dependence.

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