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The effects of policy marginalization on the implementation of a curriculum innovation: a case study of the implementation of education with production in Zimbabwe

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This paper reports the findings of a case study of the implementation of the education with production ewp curriculum reform 13years after it was first introduced in eight pilot schools in Zimbabwe. The findings of the study show that education with production was introduced as top-down curriculum reform and that a nongovernmental organization, set up to experiment with the innovation and spread the idea to other schools using a stepwise approach, lacked decisional power over personnel matters. The study also found that erratic in-service training, periodic staff transfers, lack of equipment and incentives, and lack of autonomy and independent power for the implementing organization further inhibited effective implementation. In addition, the policy of education with production became marginalized at the national education planning level because of changing socio-political priorities combined with negative dispositions of education planners. Finally, ewp found itself in unfair competition with the traditional academic curriculum because the economic rewards, societal values and attitudes and the examination system did not promote the implementation of education with production. The paper concludes by making several suggestions on the implementation of education with production in Zimbabwe.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 1997

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