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Educational management for an educational activity?: about the municipal pre-school management and leadership structure in Sweden
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Institution of education.
2012 (English)Conference paper, Presentation (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis is a total coverage survey of the municipal preschool management structure. In the late 90's the preschool in Sweden became the first step in the overall educational system. It became a pedagogical activity similar to school with respect to form and content. Although the focus was on education, political voices reclaimed the unique nature of preschool i.e. educare. It became a preschool in transition between its own tradition and modernization. The idea is that the educational management structure should support a pedagogical leadership that directs the pedagogical activity towards preschool objectives. The local authority sets the structure for management in pre-school; a municipality that in itself is an institution with its own goals and objectives. These objectives can place the municipalities in the cross pressure between their own objectives and the ones for preschool. The question in this respect is; How is the management structure formed and why? Is it a structure formed with the intention of creating educational management for the local preschool or are there other factors that guide the design? A framework based on the historical background of the preschools and theoretical terms such as steering, leading, management, pedagogical leadership, educational activity, etc. was constructed. Results are based on an online questionnaire survey. 180 municipalities out of 290 answered the questionnaire, which gives a response rate at 62 %. The response rate is evenly distributed across municipal categories, categories that the municipalities were aggregated into, formed by The Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions. The categories were handled as survey units, to support a part of the analysis and to allow a comparison between the municipalities by municipality size, both demographic and geographic. The material was analysed using the SPSS statistical program and compiled and reported with descriptive statistics. Descriptive statistics were used to demonstrate the material's characteristics and the central tendency.The results show that the municipalities’ structure of management is varied. Different municipal categories do not change this varied picture of the management landscape significantly. Although the management structure varies regarding how many levels with formal titles and which positions and functions they should have, there is a consistency in which title that the formal leader for the preschool have. The municipalities primarily utilise a principalship with mixed responsibility for both preschool and school. In light of these results, do municipalities mould a structure for the educational management for the pedagogical activities in preschool? Yes and no: the municipalities do not form a structure for preschool alone. Results show that the municipalities' main purpose is not to create a line of management specifically for the preschool. The municipalities form a management structure for educational purposes dealing with an educational activity from preschool to elementary school. The new Education Act (2010:800), is a step toward distinguishing preschool leadership from school leadership and turns the leadership of preschools into a title solely for the position and function of preschool educational activities.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
National Category
Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-19730OAI: diva2:641504
European Conference on Educational Research (ECER), University of Cadiz, September 2012
Available from: 2013-08-17 Created: 2013-08-17 Last updated: 2013-08-19Bibliographically approved

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Ecer 2012 paper Styf(2714 kB)147 downloads
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