Handbook of Schooling in Urban America

By Stanley William Rothstein | Go to book overview

7
The Organizational Structure of Urban Educational Systems: Bureaucratic Practices in Mass Societies

Joseph G. Weeres

This chapter traces the evolution of the organizational structure of urban education over the past seventy-five years. During this period, urban school systems possessed two different forms of organizational structure: a unitary one that arose at the turn of the century and lasted until approximately the mid-1960s and an institutionalized form that still exists in most urban school districts today.

Each of these structures emerged from changes in the political economy of urban school districts. At the turn of the century, industrialization gave rise to a rapidly expanding, largely insular, city economy and a political system dominated by pro-growth urban elites. The demands of these elites for organizational practices and procedures that emphasized uniformity, standardization, and efficiency resulted in the establishment of the unitary form of organizational structure. This form closely resembled Max Weber's description of bureaucracy and was characterized by a functional division of labor, tightly integrated pyramidal structure, and strong unity of command. It was a structure that required strong, central control at the apex of the organization and that, in turn, depended on a governance system capable of identifying and legitimating a unitary school system interest.

By the end of World War II, however, the insularity of the city economy was being challenged by competition arising from suburbanization and a national economy. Most big cities fared poorly in this competitive arena and consequently became increasingly dependent on fiscal resources from state and federal governments. The resulting fiscal and political interdependencies fragmented school governance, making it necessary for school administrators to respond to the demands of many different interests. The institutionalized form of structure emerged out of these political and fiscal conditions. It is a form characterized by more loosely coupled subunits, accommodation to diverse centers of organizational power, and authority dependent on multiple, often contradictory, external sources of legitimation.

-113-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Handbook of Schooling in Urban America
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 421

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.