Balance central guidance and local autonomy

The implementation of national standards and assessment systems must fit the country’s specific governance context. In countries where decentralized education systems allow greater autonomy for individual schools and teachers, it may be counterproductive to introduce national standards and standards-based assessment systems. For example, Finland does not have national standards or a teacher assessment system. Instead, head teachers are seen as leaders in quality management; principals and teachers have annual ‘development conversations’, and most teachers have individual development plans aligned with the school development plan. Some countries have national standards, but incorporate considerable flexibility at implementation stages. Countries need to consider the best balance between central guidance and local flexibility to fit the national context, ensuring consistency and accountability (OECD, 2013b).

Dangers of managerialism

3.8 Teacher accountability