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School board-public conflict in British Columbia Cameron, Ian Julian 1981

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SCHOOL BOARD - PUBLIC CONFLICT IN BRITISH COLUMBIA by IAN JULIAN CAMERON B.Ed.., University of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1968 M.Ed., University of V i c t o r i a , 1977 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF EDUCATION in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (CENTRE FOR THE STUDY OF ADMINISTRATION IN EDUCATION) We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA May, 1981 Ian Julian Cameron, 1981 In presenting t h i s thesis i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree that the Library s h a l l make i t f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of t h i s thesis for s c h o l a r l y purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. I t i s understood that copying or pub l i c a t i o n of t h i s thesis for f i n a n c i a l gain s h a l l not be allowed without my written permission. Department of EDUCATIONAL ADMINISTRATION The University of B r i t i s h Columbia 2075 Wesbrook Place Vancouver, Canada V6T 1W5 nr.fi (l / 7 Q ^  A B S T R A C T The study examined various aspects of school board-public c o n f l i c t i n B r i t i s h Columbia, including the r e l a -tionships among board operating procedures, the demographic nature of communities, and c o n f l i c t ; issues that lead to con-f l i c t ; and the intensity of c o n f l i c t . The study also exam-ined the relationships between community demography and board operating procedures. Board operating procedures were determined by exam-ining the public minutes of a l l B r i t i s h Columbia school board meetings held during a one year period. Twenty-seven boards, representing a range of procedures, were selected as a sample. Community demographic ch a r a c t e r i s t i c s were described i n terms of heterogeneity, property assessments, and d i s t r i c t s i z e . C o n f l i c t was measured by means of a questionnaire to board members and d i s t r i c t o f f i c i a l s . It was found that B r i t i s h Columbia school boards exhibit a wide range of operating procedures, with boards in large d i s t r i c t s tending to have less formal contact with the public during board meetings than do boards in smaller d i s -t r i c t s . The amount of board-public c o n f l i c t increases as d i s t r i c t size increases and i s greater i n more heterogeneous d i s t r i c t s . C o n f l i c t s concerning pupil welfare are apt to be intense. Large urban d i s t r i c t s experience greater c o n f l i c t over matters concerning physical plant and instruction than do smaller rural d i s t r i c t s . Boards in heterogeneous commun-i t i e s tend to have less c o n f l i c t with the public i f they increase direct contact with the public through public board meetings. Heterogeneity i s more closely related to c o n f l i c t than i s d i s t r i c t s i z e . V TABLE OF CONTENTS Page LIST OF TABLES x LIST OF FIGURES . x i i ACKNOWLEDGEMENT x i i i Chapter 1. BASIS OF THE STUDY 1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY 1 THE PURPOSE OF THE STUDY 2 THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY 5 2. SCHOOL BOARDS, COMMUNITIES, AND CONFLICT: A REVIEW 7 SCHOOL BOARDS AND EDUCATIONAL GOVERNANCE 7 Educational Governance in the United States and Canada: 1800 - 1960 8 Representation 11 The admi n i s t r a t i v e - l e g i s l a t i v e model .... 13 The participatory-democratic model 14 School Board Operating Styles 17 Trustee-delegate conception 18 Boards as e l i t e or arena councils 19 Boards as closed or open 20 DEMOGRAPHIC CHARACTERISTICS OF COMMUNITIES 20 BOARD-PUBLIC CONFLICT 24 SUMMARY 34 iv Chapter Page 3. CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK AND DEFINITION OF TERMS 37 CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK 37 Board Operating Procedure 40 Community Demographic Characteristics .... 44 Co n f l i c t 46 ASSUMPTIONS OF THE CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK 50 DEFINITION OF TERMS 50 Board Operating Procedures 50 Co n f l i c t 51 Demand 51 Heterogeneous Community 51 High External Demand Board 51 Homogeneous Community 52 Low External Demand Board 52 DELIMINATIONS AND LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY 53 4. THE RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODOLOGY 54 THE PROBLEM 55 EXAMINATION OF THE PROBLEMS 58 School Board Operating Procedures 58 Selection of the Sample 63 External demand index 64 Demographic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of communities 69 EDI and heterogeneity 72 v Chapter Page 4. (Continued) C o n f l i c t Measurement 77 Amount of c o n f l i c t 80 Intensity of c o n f l i c t 81 Subject of c o n f l i c t 81 ANALYSIS OF DATA 82 EDI Relationships 84 Amount-of-Conflict Relationships 86 Subject-of-Conflict Relationships 88 Intensity-of-Conflict Relationships 89 Dependent Relationships 90 Contributions to Significance 92 5. FINDINGS OF THE STUDY 94 INTRODUCTION 94 PROBLEM 1: EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX 95 Findings 95 Discussion 96 Boards as e l i t i s t or populist 96 Relationship between operating procedures and d i s t r i c t 97 PROBLEM 2: AMOUNT OF CONFLICT 98 Findings 98 Discussion 99 PROBLEM 3: SUBJECT OF CONFLICT 101 Con f l i c t Concerning Physical Plant 102 Findings 102 v i Chapter Page 5. (Continued) Discussion 103 Co n f l i c t Concerning Pupils 105 Findings 105 Discussion 106 Co n f l i c t Involving Staff 107 Findings 107 Discussion 108 C o n f l i c t Involving Instruction 109 Findings 109 Discussion 110 Summary 112 PROBLEM 4: INTENSITY OF CONFLICT 112 Findings 112 Discussion 113 PROBLEM 5: INTERACTIVE RELATIONSHIPS 115 Problem 5.1: Are there s i g n i f i c a n t relationships among the variables of EDI, heterogeneity, and amount of c o n f l i c t ? 115 Findings 115 Contributions to significance 117 Low heterogeneity 119 Medium heterogeneity 119 High heterogeneity 119 Problem 5.2: Are there s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationships among EDI, d i s t r i c t size and amount of c o n f l i c t ? .. 119 v i i Chapter Page 5. (Continued) Findings 120 Discussion 120 Low heterogeneity 121 Medium heterogeneity 122 High heterogeneity 123 SUMMARY 125 6. SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS .... 126 NATURE OF THE STUDY 126 Background 126 Literature Review 126 Methodology 128 Findings 128 CONCLUSIONS 130 RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FURTHER STUDY 132 Methodological 132 School board operating procedure 132 Relative heterogeneity 133 Co n f l i c t 133 Correlations 133 Theoretical 134 Operating procedure 134 Co n f l i c t 135 Further Recommedations 137 LITERATURE CITED 139 v i i i APPENDICES Page A. QUESTIONNAIRE 151 B. COVER LETTER TO DISTRICT ADMINISTRATION 156 COVER LETTER TO TRUSTEES 156 FOLLOW-UP LETTER 156 C. CALCULATION OF INDICES OF HETEROGENEITY 162 D. QUESTIONNAIRE TABULATION 168 E. CONFLICT INCIDENTS AS REPORTED BY BOARD MEMBERS AND DISTRICT OFFICIALS 174 VITA ix LIST OF TABLES Table Page I CALCULATED EDI COMPARED TO PROCEDURES AS STATED BY BOARD OFFICES 67 11(a) RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN EDI AND BOARD REGULATIONS REGARDING REQUESTS FROM THE PUBLIC 68 11(b) RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN EDI AND REGULATIONS REGARDING QUESTION PERIODS 68 III HETEROGENEITY INDICES BASED ON DEMOGRAPHIC CHARACTERISTICS OF SAMPLE SCHOOL DISTRICTS 75 IV EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX AND HETEROGENEITY BY RANK OF THE 27 BRITISH COLUMBIA SCHOOL DISTRICTS STUDIED 76 V RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN EDI AND DEMOGRAPHIC VARIABLES IN 27 BRITISH COLUMBIA SCHOOL DISTRICTS STUDIED 77 VI STATISTICAL TESTS FOR PROBLEMS AND SUB-PROBLEMS 83 VII RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN EDI AND SELECTED VARIABLES 95 VIII RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN AMOUNT OF CONFLICT AND SELECTED VARIABLES 99 IX(a) RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN CONFLICTS CONCERNING PHYSICAL PLANT AND SELECTED VARIABLES 103 IX(b) RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN CONFLICTS CONCERNING PUPILS AND SELECTED VARIABLES 106 IX(c) RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN CONFLICTS CONCERNING STAFF AND SELECTED VARIABLES 108 IX(d) RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN CONFLICTS CONCERNING INSTRUCTION AND SELECTED VARIABLES 110 X RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN INTENSITY OF CONFLICT AND SELECTED VARIABLES 113 x Table Page XI INTERACTIVE CORRELATIONS AMONG THE AMOUNT OF CONFLICT, EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX, AND DISTRICT HETEROGENEITY IN 23 BRITISH COLUMBIA SCHOOL DISTRICTS 116 XII ANALYSIS OF VARIANCE OF THE AMOUNT OF CONFLICT IN 23 BRITISH COLUMBIA SCHOOL DISTRICTS, CLASSIFIED BY EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX AND DISTRICT HETEROGENEITY 117 XIII ANALYSIS OF VARIANCE OF THE AMOUNT OF CONFLICT IN 23 BRITISH COLUMBIA SCHOOL DISTRICTS, CLASSIFIED BY EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX AND DISTRICT SIZE 120 XIV TABULATION OF QUESTIONNAIRE RESPONSES 171 xi I LIST OF FIGURES Figure Page 1. COMPARISON OF CHARACTERISTICS OF BOARD STYLE CONCEPTS 33 2. THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN BOARD OPERATING STYLE, COMMUNITY DEMOGRAPHIC STRUCTURE, AND CONFLICT 40 3. RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX, VARIABLES OF COMMUNITY HETEROGENEITY, AND AMOUNT OR INTENSITY OF CONFLICT 49 4. CONTRIBUTION OF INTERACTION BETWEEN LEVELS OF EDI AND HETEROGENEITY TO BOARD-PUBLIC CONFLICT IN 23 BRITISH COLUMBIA SCHOOL DISTRICTS 118 5. INTERACTION BETWEEN COMMUNITY HETEROGENEITY, EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX, AND AMOUNT OF CONFLICT 129 x i i ACKNOWLEDGEMENT I would l i k e to thank the people who assisted me in this study, in order of appearance. Er i c Lewis, D i s t r i c t Superintendent of Schools, Saanich School D i s t r i c t (Retired), who started me off on the study; Wendy and Samantha, who saw very l i t t l e of a husband and father while the study was taking place; Elmer Froese, Walt Hartrick, and Graham Kelsey, my advisory committee, who provided suggestions that made the study doable; Jamie Walling who went far out of his way to be helpful, and who became a good friend; Mary MacLaurin, who corrected my errors and typed, and typed and typed. My thanks to you a l l . x i i i Chapter 1 BASIS OF THE STUDY BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY As i s the case with most studies, this study was prompted by a number of incidents, experiences, and observa-tions. This study grew out of experiences as a d i s t r i c t administrator in one of the seventy-five school d i s t r i c t s in B r i t i s h Columbia. The d i s t r i c t was a reasonably affluent suburban d i s t r i c t , with well-trained teachers and administra-tors and conscientious school trustees. The socio-economic l e v e l of most of the residents was above the provincial aver-age. In spite of these seeming advantages, the school board experienced a considerable amount of c o n f l i c t with the public. Curiosity about c o n f l i c t became heightened when, during an informal discussion with a group of superintendents concerning board meetings, one of the superintendents remarked that although his board set aside f i f t e e n minute for public questions at each meeting, not one question had been asked during the two years he had been in the d i s t r i c t . In fa c t , no member of the public had attended a board meeting i n that time. This superintendent also stated that a l l the 1 2 trustees had been elected by acclamation for the past six years. He was concerned that the board was 'out of touch' with the public. One of the other participants informed him that he did not know how lucky he was. This second superintendent stated that his d i s t r i c t was in a continual ferment, that the board did l i t t l e more than respond to the public pressure, and most p o l i c i e s were formulated as a result of public pres-sure rather than as a result of educational planning. After the other participants had outlined how their d i s t r i c t s fared with regard to board-public relations, the question was asked why there was such a d i s p a r i t y . There seemed to be no p a r t i c u l a r or obvious pattern between the demographic nature of the d i s t r i c t s and the amount of con-f l i c t they experienced. After further discussion, one of the superintendents said "Obviously, we don't know. Why don't you find out and t e l l us?" The present investigation arose from that remark. THE PURPOSE OF THE STUDY > C o n f l i c t between school boards and the publics they serve i s not uncommon. Stories on items such as c i t i z e n pro-tests about school closure, disquiet regarding French Immer-sion programs] complaints about decreased bus service for pupils, and other complaints have appeared in newspspers and p e r i o d i c a l s across Canada. [In one typ i c a l month (March, 3 1978), Canada's five major newspapers (Montreal Star, Toronto Star, Toronto Globe and Mail, Winnipeg Free Press, Vancouver Sun) carried a t o t a l of two hundred stories on board-public c o n f l i c t . ] 1 While most of these c o n f l i c t s were undoubtedly settled quickly and e a s i l y , i t i s possible for unresolved c o n f l i c t s to have far-reaching consequences. For instance, Walker (1977) studied the effect on a small town when the board closed the lo c a l secondary school. The c o n f l i c t was sparked by the closing of the school, but Walker makes i t clear that the effects of the c o n f l i c t , as seen in the disen-chantment of the townspeople with their board and with the democratic process, in the early retirement of the p r i n c i p a l , and i n the i l l - w i l l and bad feeling engendered by the con-f l i c t , were far more important than the o r i g i n a l disagreement over whether the school should have been closed. Lee and Lapointe (1977) examined the effects of a c o n f l i c t that arose as a result of a debate over whether a new French language school should be b u i l t in Sturgeon F a l l s , Ontario. They found that the community was polarized, that ostracism occurred, and in some cases, separations and divor-ces resulted from the c o n f l i c t . Again, the effects of the c o n f l i c t transcended the o r i g i n a l cause. Considering the damage which may result from c o n f l i c t 1-See especially Toronto Star, March 3, 14, 20, 21; Vancouver Sun, March 8, 11, 18, 22; Montreal Star, March 1, 6, 7, 16, 23. 4 between school boards and the public, i t i s surprising how l i t t l e research has been conducted into the ways in which school boards operate, and s p e c i f i c a l l y into the interactions between school boards and the publics they represent and serve. This i s not to suggest that there i s a lack of l i t e r -ature on the subject. For example, a number of writers have urged school boards to 'deal' with the public i n certain ways, but few of those writers have based their work on research, while those empirical studies that have been conducted have resulted i n contradictory findings, and some have used methodology that i s open to c r i t i c i s m . The main purpose of the present study was to ascer-t a i n i f there are differences between B r i t i s h Columbia school boards that experience l i t t l e or no c o n f l i c t with the public and boards that experience greater c o n f l i c t with the public. In order to decide which of the many possible variables might account for varying levels of c o n f l i c t , the l i t e r a t u r e on educational governance was reviewed. As w i l l be discussed i n Chapter Two, the l i t e r a t u r e indicated that the topic of board-public c o n f l i c t has received increasing attention i n recent years, but that no d e f i n i t i v e conclusions have been reached regarding the relationships between possible variables and the amount of c o n f l i c t . The l i t e r a t u r e did suggest, however, that certain variables seem to have a closer relationship with board-public c o n f l i c t than do other variables. Of the many 5 variables that might be considered, two have been indentified by various authorities (Boyd, 1975; Browder", 1970; Callahan, 1975; Lutz and Iannaccone, 1978) as being p a r t i c u l a r l y worthy of attention. These variables are the operating style of school boards, and the demographic nature of the communities served by school boards. The main focus of the present study, therefore, became an examination of the relationships among school board operating procedures, certain community demographic variables, and the amount of board-public con-f l i c t . A second topic of the study was an examination of community demography related to board operating procedures. A third topic concerned issues over which there was c o n f l i c t . Are some matters such as s t a f f , i n struction, and pupil wel-fare more frequently associated with c o n f l i c t than are others? The fourth topic concerned the intensity of c o n f l i c t between boards and the public. THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY It was thought that the study would contribute to knowledge primarily in methodological and theoretical areas, and that certain findings might be useful to school boards and administrators. As w i l l be shown in Chapters Three and Four, prev-ious studies in the areas of board-public c o n f l i c t have used rather brief questionnaires or observation. It seemed that 6 the operating s t y l e of school boards could be measured by less obtrusive means, such as content analysis of school board records. Secondly, previous studies have described communities in terms of size or wealth, but many sociolo-g i s t s have suggested that the demographic structure of a community i s more important for many soc i o l o g i c a l purposes. Consequently, the study used an e a s i l y applied method of des-crib i n g communities in terms of demographic structure, as well as using more common measures such as wealth and si z e . T h i r d l y , c o n f l i c t has usually been measured by means of a simple questionnaire item. The present study measured c o n f l i c t with a questionnaire that gave respondents a high degree of freedom in answering, but provided a structure to a s s i s t them. It also seemed that the study could make a contribu-tion to the theory of educational governance. The study provided answers to questions concerning school board i n t e r -action with the public with reference to the relationships between types of communities and the operating procedures adopted by boards. With regard to c o n f l i c t , the study sug-gested what subjects are associated with c o n f l i c t ; what c o n f l i c t s are l i k e l y to be most intense; and what types of communities are most l i k e l y to experience c o n f l i c t . The study also indicated which variables of demographic factors such as mother tongue, education, age, occupation and income are associated with c o n f l i c t between publics and school boards. Chapter 2 SCHOOL BOARDS, COMMUNITIES, AND CONFLICT: A REVIEW In order to provide a sound theoretical basis for the present study, i t seemed necessary to review the l i t e r a t u r e i n two areas; educational governance and c o n f l i c t theory. The review of the l i t e r a t u r e of eduational governance focussed primarily on school board operating styles and community demography. Accordingly, this chapter has three major sections: the ways in which school boards operate, demographic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of communities, and relationships concerning board operating styles, communities, and c o n f l i c t . SCHOOL BOARDS AND EDUCATIONAL GOVERNANCE School boards are l e g i s l a t i v e bodies, whose members are chosen (usually by election) to represent the residents of the school d i s t r i c t served by the board. The way in which the board operates, or i t s st y l e , w i l l be determined partly by the way in which school boards and education governance have developed in North America, and partly by the way in which board members view their role as representatives. This section of the chapter w i l l f i r s t examine the history of school boards and educational governance i n North America, then the l i t e r a t u r e r e l a t i n g to theories of representation, 7 8 and f i n a l l y the effect these factors have had on the opera-ting styles of North American school boards. Educational Governance i n the United  States and Canada: 1800 - 1960 During the f i r s t half of the nineteenth century Amer-ican schools were administered by trustees. Schultz (1973) found that manuals and reports of the period instructed board members how to hire teachers, inspect classrooms, examine pupils, and in fact do the sort of thing administrators now do. The wave of immigrants of the 1830's led to a population explosion that taxed the a b i l i t i e s and time of the board members to the breaking point. For instance, Tyack (1967) rela t e s that some board members were expected to examine hundreds of pupils o r a l l y each year. As a result of such necessities, the need for professional full-time adminis-t r a t i o n became obvious, and by 1876, according to Cubberley (1916), one hundred and forty-two c i t i e s in the United States (out of one hundred and seventy-five with a population of more than 8,000) had a superintendent. With the coming of professional educational administrators came a tremendous increase in l i t e r a t u r e on educational governance, primarily concerned with who should run the schools. The administrators f e l t that they were more competent than lay people, and should have primary control. School boards were unwilling to reli n q u i s h their r e s p o n s i b i l i t y , and a battle for control ensued. 9 According to Hays (1959) the battle ended around 1900, with the school boards s t i l l in charge. The reform movement in American p o l i t i c s , combined with the urgent pleadings of superintendents \ saw many board members defeated in elections, but the school boards were s t i l l in control of the school systems. Canadian educators of the nineteenth century were less concerned about who should govern education than about the problems of outside influences on Canadian youth: Ameri-can texts, B r i t i s h colonialism, the church, r a c i a l groups, and minority language rights a l l influenced Canadian school development in the late 1800's, according to Hodgetts (1968). By 1900, most Canadian towns and c i t i e s had school boards, but their tasks consisted mostly of supplying schools and teachers, who then carried out the orders of the central p r o v i n c i a l authority. Nevertheless, these boards, because they controlled budgets, wielded considerable power, and would soon wield more (Tomkins, 1977). At the end of the nineteenth century, school boards were well established i n Canada and the United States, and t h e i r duties were reasonably clear. Educational writers of the time devoted much of their attention to how school boards should carry out their duties. Of the advice given to American school board members during the early part of this period, a large portion came from Elwood Cubberley. Cubberley's text on educational administration, published in 10 1916, carried the following advice regarding school boards. They should be small, fiv e to seven members, as small boards are more e f f e c t i v e than large. Large boards were "public debating s o c i e t i e s " , he said, "where members play to the public or the press". Cubberley suggested that business be conducted i n a business-like manner around a table. He also advocated that boards be elected at large; that board members be "businessmen" and "professionals with large practices", as these men are "more used to handling business e f f i c i e n t l y " ; and that boards "decide matters once and for a l l and then move on" (Cubberley, 1916:16). Cubberley was also in favour of boards appointing experts and then l e t t i n g the experts run the system. The "real work of the board", he said, was "to determine p o l i c i e s , select professional experts, and gener-a l l y control the system". Cubberley was very i n f l u e n t i a l , and many boards tended to operate as he suggested. It i s d i f f i c u l t to say whether school boards followed the advice of writers such as Cubberley or developed their procedures by t r i a l and error, but by the time so c i o l o g i s t s and p o l i t i c a l s c i e n t i s t s began to study school boards in the early 1960's, writers were able to make certain generali-zations about school boards and their operating s t y l e s . Various writers ( C a h i l l and Hencley, 1964; Kimbrough, 1964; Agger, 1964) concluded from their studies of community power structures that school boards were e l i t i s t in style because 11 they responded to informal power linkages. Such boards saw no need to provide for formal input from the public. For instance, Callahan (1962) claimed that the education system had been dominated by business ideology for years, and that these forces had kept the public out of the decision proces-ses, thus making boards 'closed' from public view. This notion of the school board as an e l i t e group governing l o c a l education with l i t t l e or no input from the general public was reinforced by administrators themselves (Conant, 1964; Morris, 1957; Rader, 1954; Wood, 1958) who advocated a philosophy similar to that advanced by Cubberley forty years before: education should be a p o l i t i c a l ; school boards should l e g i s l a t e , professional educators should admin-i s t e r ; and formal channels of input to boards from teachers and the public were not needed because teachers had input through administrators and the public had input through their elected representatives. In addition to these h i s t o r i c a l influences, school board operating style has been influenced by community b e l i e f s concerning the duties of elected o f f i c i a l s . Representation In a small society, i t i s possible for a l l members to have a direct say in the government of the society. As s o c i e t i e s become larger and more complex, however, i t becomes necessary for the duties of government to be entrusted to a 12 small number drawn from the t o t a l population. In a democ-racy, this i s most commonly done by having the members of the society elect representatives, who then meet and decide on laws and p o l i c i e s . It i s possible for representatives to carry out their duties in a variety of ways. In the simplest terms, there are two extreme choices: the 'delegate' or the 1 free-agent'. Considering the question of what position a represen-ta t i v e should assume, Belloc and Chesterton (1911) said: Either the representative must vote as his constit-uents would vote i f consulted, or he must vote in the opposite sense. In the l a t t e r case, he i s not a representative at a l l , but merely an oligarch; for i t i s surely r i d i c u l o u s to say that a man represents Bethnal Green i f he i s in the habit of saying "Aye" when the people of Bethnal Green would say "no" (1911:17). That seems to be a f a i r summation of the 'delegate' p o s i t i o n . The 'trustee' or 'free-agent' position i s set fort h by Lord Brougham (1930): The essence of Representation i s that the power of the people should be parted with, and given over, for a limited period, to the deputy chosen by the people, and that he should perform that part of the government which, but for this transfer, would have been performed by the people themselves. It i s not representation i f the constituents so far retain a control as to act for themselves. They may communi-cate with their delegate, but he i s to act - not they; he i s to act for them - not they for them-selves (1930:442). U n t i l f a i r l y recently, school board members were advised that only the l a t t e r stance was appropriate. That advice came largely from educational administrators, who 13 advocated a position that might be termed the administrative- l e g i s l a t i v e model. Recently, advocates of the delegate, or participatory-democratic, position have come forward. The a d m i n i s t r a t i v e - l e g i s l a t i v e model. Writers who favour the adm i n i s t r a t i v e - l e g i s l a t i v e model follow a long t r a d i t i o n i n American education, dating back to Cubberley (1916). These writers (Boyd, 1975; Blau and Scott, 1960; K i r s t , 1970; and Walton, 1959, among others) claim that the public i s best served by an e f f i c i e n t government that w i l l provide the best educational system at the lowest pr i c e . In order to do that, they claim, school boards should employ able administrators, l i s t e n to their advice, make policy based on that advice, and then allow the administrators to run the schools. The main task of the school board, as far as these writers are con-cerned, i s to ensure that the administration can do the job i t i s hired to do. To a large extent, this rather t r a d i -t i o n a l model of educational governance i s out of favour at the present time, although there are many educators, p a r t i c -u l a r l y senior administrators, who s t i l l favour i t . The main c r i t i c i s m of the admi n i s t r a t i v e - l e g i s l a t i v e model i s that i t i s undemocratic. One of i t s strongest opponents, Harmon Zeigler, claims that school boards that follow this model are simply "legitimating the professionals' expertise" (Zeigler and Jennings, 1974). These writers would prefer to see a more populist or participatory form of government i n education. 14 The participatory-democratic model. The proponents of this model fe e l that the separation of l e g i s l a t i o n and administra-tion i s a r t i f i c i a l and unworkable. Such writers (Bowers, 1970; Campbell and others, 1965; E l i o t , 1959; Eulau and Prewitt, 1973; Gross, 1958; among others) argue that since school boards are the elected representatives of the people there w i l l be times when they w i l l have to make administra-t i v e decisions. Eulau and Prewitt (1973), for instance, claim that schools are commonweal organizations, in direct, intimate contact with their c l i e n t s , and should be governed by the wishes of those c l i e n t s . Some authorities (Cooper, 1973; Kerr, 1964; Stelzer, 1974) take the view that most educators are e l i t i s t s who w i l l invariably design a system geared to middle and upper class pupils, and ignore the needs of disadvantaged and minority p u p i l s . Therefore, they argue, the public must have complete access to school boards, and boards must consider the emer-gent needs of the public when governing the system. Writers who favour the a d m i n i s t r a t i v e - l e g i s l a t i v e model respond to these c r i t i c i s m s by pointing out that participatory-democratic school boards, which they term 'po p u l i s t 1 , ignore long-range educational planning in order to deal with emergent issues. Goldhammer (1964) found that i n one area of the United States eighty percent of the time spent by school board members on board business was taken up by administrative matters, and that l i t t l e i f any long-range 15 planning took place. Goldharamer c i t e s several possible reasons for the amount of time spent on administrative matters, the chief one being public pressure. Carter (1960) notes that the public knows very l i t t l e about the substance of education, and i s concerned primarily with minor detai l s or emotional issues such as dress codes, sex education, and the l i k e . Since school boards often react to public demand, i t i s these issues that receive attention from trustees. Many board meetings are spent in endless discussion over the length of pupils' hair, while the major issues of education, such as the d e s i r a b i l i t y of adopting mastery learning tech-niques, are l e f t to the p r i n c i p a l s and teachers (Carter, 1960). A study by Marten (1962) showed i t was not just ave-rage c i t i z e n s who were not knowledgeable about educational a f f a i r s . Martin's survey of c i t i z e n s , mayors, and lo c a l governmental o f f i c i a l s showed that none of them evinced par-t i c u l a r i n t e r e s t i n general educational matters. Martin states that these general matters provide a reservoir for what we have called episodic issues - issues which emerge under unusual or special conditions and shortly subside. Thus, i t i s not textbooks which cause concern, but a par-t i c u l a r textbook under a special set of circum-stances (1962:55). Cunningham and Nystrand (1969) analyzed the 1969 Gallup p o l l on education and noted that the public does not understand educational issues, a finding that they suggest indicates that school boards who allow the public to run the 16 system may be allowing the system to be led by the b l i n d . Boyd (1975) and K i r s t (1970) present a further argument against 'populist' school boards by pointing out that attempting to follow the dictates of the public i s apt to mean giving de facto recognition to pressure groups that may not be at a l l representative of the general public. While the participatory-democratic model i s seen as desirable by some authorities, and undesirable by others, some see i t as inevitable. Housego (1980) refers to the 1960's as a decade of " p a r t i c i p a t i o n " on the part of students, teachers, parents and c i t i z e n s . These elements of society "became much more involved i n the governance of education through well-organized interest groups" (Housego, 1980:383). Although "the auth o r i t i e s " (to use Housego's term) had directed and shaped the course of education u n t i l 1960, they could no longer do so. "In other words", says Housego, "the prerogatives of the governors were in no way to be pre-empted by the planners" (1980:384). Williams and Powell (1980) see the pluralism of modern Canadian society as having forced a participatory model on school boards, a trend that they view as increasing. To summarize, most school boards do not arrive at their method or style of operation solely [or, according to Blanchard and K l e i n ( 1 9 7 7 ) e v e n primarily] because board members desire to represent their constituents in a certain 17 way. Board operating styles usually develop over a consid-erable period of time^ and are affected by circumstances, precedent, and the desires and personalities of administra-tors and board members as well as the public. School Board Operating Styles Just as individual representatives w i l l carry out the i r roles in various ways, the governing bodies they form w i l l behave in certain ways. The way in which governing bodies (in the case of the present study, school boards) carry out their mandate has been described as their operating  st y l e (Blanchard and Klein, 1977; Boyd, 1976a; Eulau, 1972). According to Eulau (1972) the operating style of small gover-ning bodies w i l l range from councils whose members agree that special interests have no place in their deliberations at any time, and the members therefore act as free-agents at a l l times, to councils whose members a l l represent a set constit-uency and act as delegates at a l l times. Eulau suggests that councils can be characterized by examining their degree of responsiveness to public pressures. He found that of eighty-two c i t y councils studied, twenty were responsive to the wishes of the public, twenty-six were responsive to ad hoc pressure groups, and t h i r t y - s i x did not act in response to any organized public views (1972:113). One of Eulau's findings was that while individual council members often a l t e r their attitude, depending on the issue at hand~ councils seldom do so. Councils that act as a 18 unif i e d body do so most of the time regardless of the issues, while delegate bodies rarely abandon their c h a r a c t e r i s t i c adversarial s t y l e . Writers who have studied school boards suggest that school boards can also be characterized i n various ways according to their operating s t y l e . As in many other areas of s o c i a l science, more than one model has been advanced. Some writers ( E l i o t , 1959; Eulau and Prewitt, 1973; Minar, 1966a; Zeigler and Jennings, 1974) offer a model that may be characterized as the 'trustee-delegate' model, while others (Iannaccone, 1977; Lutz and Iannaccone, 1978) put forth a model they term the 'elite-arena' model. Trustee-delegate conception. The trustee-delegate school of thought can be summed up as follows: trustee boards see themselves as responsible for the common good. Decisions are made in private (James, 1961) and public discussions are amicable and present a united front to the public. Trustee boards see their role primarily as l e g i s l a t i v e in style, and therefore allow the administration to operate the system. Delegate boards, termed 'populist' by some writers (Zeigler and Jennings, 1974; Wirt and Kirst," 1972), tend to see themselves as being composed of people who each represent a single constituency (geographical ethnic, socio-economic, i d e o l o g i c a l , or any combination). Decisions are thrashed out i n public. Such boards tend to make administrative as well as l e g i s l a t i v e decisions. 19 Zeigler and Jennings (1974) and Boyd (1976a) suggest that trustee boards are l i k e l y to operate best i n large metropolitan a r e a s w h i l e delegate boards w i l l be most s a t i s -factory in rural areas. This opinion has been challenged by various other authorities, as w i l l be discussed l a t e r in the chapter. Boards as e l i t e or arena councils. Some researchers follow the lead of Frank Lutz (1974) in seeing school boards as f a l l i n g on a continuum with e l i t e councils at one extreme and arena councils at the other. This conception was proposed by F. W. Bailey, an English anthropologist, who based his work on v i l l a g e councils in India (Bailey, 1965). Lutz (1974) applied Bailey's conception to school boards and drew up patterns of action that he saw as typifying North American school boards. Lutz t y p i f i e s one end of the continuum, the e l i t e council school board, in the following terms: members see themselves as guardians of the public but separate from the people; decisions are made in private; members st r i v e for consensus and act unanimously in public; and such boards tend to be administrative as well as l e g i s l a t i v e . Arena  councils, according to Lutz, are not concerned about consen-sus. They reach decisions in public meetings, and tend to act as l e g i s l a t o r s , leaving administration to administrators. While there are obvious s i m i l a r i t i e s between trustee and e l i t e models on the one hand and delegate and arena models on the other, there are also some important 20 differences. These s i m i l a r i t i e s and differences w i l l be dis-cussed further in a later section on causes of board-public c o n f l i c t . Boards as closed or open. There i s one other model that has been used in an attempt to describe school board operating procedures. Brayne (1979) characterizes boards as operating i n a closed or open fashion, according to the number of demands (or requests for action) that come to the board from the public as compared to the to t a l number of demands. The board studied at length by Brayne, who based his study largely on the work of Zeigler and Jennings (1974), received only twenty percent of such demands from the public, the other eighty percent coming from the administration. Brayne characterizes that board as closed. Brayne's study i s impor-tant because i t demonstrates how a board can be categorized as closed or open r e l a t i v e l y e a s i l y , by inspecting board minutes and ascertaining the o r i g i n of requests for action. This section has considered the attitudes or stances that school board members may adopt in governing their school systems. The next section w i l l examine the natures of com-munities served by school boards. DEMOGRAPHIC CHARACTERISTICS OF COMMUNITIES The l i t e r a t u r e dealing with communities i s large and varied. However, some researchers in the area of school board-community c o n f l i c t (Zeigler and Jennings, 1974; Minar, 21 1967; Lutz and Iannaccone, 1978) have established that the degree of homogeneity or heterogeneity i s an important variable affecting the relationship between a board and i t s community. To what extent communities can be defined as homogeneous or heterogeneous and how these concepts can be measured i s next discussed. Tonnies ( f i r s t published in 1887, 1963 edition cited) was one of the f i r s t modern authors to study communities. Tonnies' notion of the polar types of Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft i s s t i l l widely quoted a century after f i r s t p u b l i c a t i o n . Although Tonnies' primary interest was social relationships, much of what he said i s relevant to the study of communities, p a r t i c u l a r l y with reference to homogeneity and heterogeneity. He sees Gemeinschaft, or culture of the i n d i v i d u a l or family, leading to a Gemeinschaft of l o c a l i t y , or communities of physical l i f e . By the same token, Tonnies sees Gesellschaft relationships, or relationships based on mutual benefit, as leading to communities based on conven-t i o n , l e g i s l a t i o n and public opinion (Tonnies, 1963:65). Tonnies draws a p a r a l l e l between Gemeinschaft relationships and v i l l a g e s and towns, and between Gesellschaft r e l a t i o n -ships and metropolitan areas. Zimmerman (1938) used Tonnies' typology as a basis for his empirical study of community types. He terms his poles the ' l o c a l i s t i c ' and 'cosmopolitan' communities. Zimmerman's studies led him to observe that l o c a l i s t i c 22 communities have the following features: their members have a strong sense of belonging to the community, people care about one another, mistrust outsiders and big government, and are suspicious of change. Members of cosmopolitan communi-t i e s , on the other hand, emphasize individual needs and wants, are not 'neighbourly', pay l i t t l e attention to time-honoured t r a d i t i o n s , and accept change as i t comes. More recent work along s i m i l a r l i n e s has been carried out (Buckley, 1967; Firey, 1947; Laslett, 1967), but as Poplin (1972) points out, this more recent work has largely been a refinement of Tonnies' and Zimmerman's seminal e f f o r t s . Parsons (1953) used Tonnies' typology to construct four p a r a l l e l dichotomies that he terms "pattern variables". Parsons suggests that when soc i a l action i s called for the actor must decide which orientation i s appropriate. His categories of a f f e c t i v i t y , particularism" ascription and diffuseness equate to Tonnies' view of Gemeinschaft, or homogeneous community, while his categories of a f f e c t i v e n e u t r a l i t y , universalism, achievement and s p e c i f i c i t y equate to Gesellschaft or heterogeneous community. Applied to local government, Parsons' theory indicates that c i t i z e n s of a homogeneous community act (and expect their representative to act) in an informal, f r i e n d l y , p a t e r n a l i s t i c fashion, while inhabitants of a heterogeneous community act (and expect the i r representatives to act) on a formal] business-like basis with accountability b u i l t into the system (Parsons, 1953). 23 According to Parsons, therefore, in a small town, or a homogeneous community, the public i s l i k e l y to have f a i t h i n the l o c a l government, and may not demand the openness and accountability that the public in large heterogeneous areas i s l i k e l y to demand. Recently, some sociol o g i s t s have suggested that com-munities may be categorized according to their demographic structure. These socio l o g i s t s follow the lead of Lieberson (1969) who devised a method of using census data to calculate an index of d i v e r s i t y based on variables such as education, age, mother tongue, income, and occupation. Lieberson's con-struct has the advantage, to the researcher, of being easily operationalized, and has been used in many studies i n the past decade. As Poplin (1972) points out, this use of constructed types in the study.of sociology should not delude the resear-cher into thinking that the idealized types exist as dichoto-mous e n t i t i e s . There w i l l exist a continuum ranging from one extreme to the other, and, i f the continuum i s well thought out, a l l examples of the subject being studied w i l l f i t on the continuum. Poplin also points out that one can set an a r b i t r a r y l i m i t at some point on such a continuum and say " a l l communities ( i f communities are the subject of the study) to the l e f t of this point are homogeneous, while a l l to the right are heterogeneous". Such an a r t i f i c i a l dichot-omy, however, leaves one open to c r i t i c i s m as to the v a l i d i t y 24 of a r b i t r a r i l y deciding that two communities that are very si m i l a r s h a l l be treated as d i s s i m i l a r simply because they f a l l on either side of the midpoint on the continuum. When studying the homogeneity or heterogeneity of communities, therefore, i t i s more accurate to place the communities on a continuum rather than to dichotomize them. F i n a l l y , (and perhaps most importantly), i t i s essen-t i a l to r e a l i z e that 'homogeneous' and 'heterogeneous' 'are r e l a t i v e terms. While there are undoubtedly communities in the world that are quite homogeneous, there are not many such communites in western Canada. BOARD-PUBLIC CONFLICT The l i t e r a t u r e on educational governance contains a considerable number of references to c o n f l i c t between school boards and the public. Usually, there i s a t a c i t assumption that such c o n f l i c t i s dysfunctional; that i t should be mini-mized or eliminated. There are other views that should be considered, however. In 1973, the Speech Communication Association spon-sored a conference on communications and c o n f l i c t . In the Prologue to a c o l l e c t i o n of papers on the topic, most of them presented to the conference, Herbert Simons ( M i l l e r and Simons, 1974) notes that participants at the conference were divided into two schools of thought regarding the subject of c o n f l i c t . 25 Those s o c i a l s c i e n t i s t s who are 'actor-oriented' view c o n f l i c t s as necessary and inevitable, because they help the actor r e a l i z e his individual i n t e r e s t s . Those theorists who are 'systems-oriented' view c o n f l i c t as bad, because i t prevents the system (a government, a business, or any other c o l l e c t i v i t y ) from r e a l i z i n g i t s goals. The view of the 'actor-oriented' theorists i s presen-ted by Coser who suggests that Far from being only a "negative" factor which "tears apart", s o c i a l c o n f l i c t may f u l f i l l a number of deter-minate functions i n groups and other interpersonal r e l a t i o n s (1956:8). The 'actor-oriented' view i s commonly held by psych-o l o g i s t s who tend to value individuals more than systems. The psychological point of view i s expounded by various writers (Alger, 1970; Asrael, 1969; Barkman, 1965; Bosmajian, 1972; Ephron, 1961; Snyder, 1961; Williams, 1967) who hold that c o n f l i c t can be useful to individuals and in some ins-tances, to organizations. To the 'systems-oriented' s o c i a l s c i e n t i s t , c o n f l i c t i s an i l l n e s s of the system that should be treated as soon as possible. That view does not indicate that c o n f l i c t should be covered up or ignored; just as a b o i l cannot be cured with a bandage, c o n f l i c t cannot be cured by hoping i t w i l l go away. On the other hand, a b o i l cannot be allowed to grow larger and larger u n t i l i t poisons the body, nor (according to the systems-oriented so c i a l s c i e n t i s t s ) can c o n f l i c t be 26 allowed to increase u n t i l i t ruins the system. According to various writers (Deutsch, 1969; Gamson1966; Handy, 1976; H e l l r i e g e l and Slocum, 1976; March, 1965; Mintzberg, 1973; Scott, 1974; Selznick; 1957; Sherif, 1966) the ideal s o c i a l system w i l l not have any c o n f l i c t . Since there i s no such thing as an ideal s o c i a l system, when c o n f l i c t does occur the system should deal with i t in appropriate ways and eliminate i t . Success in accommodating differences of opinion over goals or the d i s t r i b u t i o n of scarce resources i s seen by var-ious writers (Boulding, 1962; Coleman, 1957; Deutsch, 1969; Oberschall, 1973; Sherif, 1966) as being less a function of substance than of process. One of the most important questions l e f t unanswered i n the l i t e r a t u r e i s the relationship between c o n f l i c t and s a t i s f a c t i o n on the part of the public. Various writers ( M i l l a r and Simons, 1974) suggest that c o n f l i c t represents d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n . That view i s cer t a i n l y held by various writers on board-public c o n f l i c t (Boyd, 1976a; Faber, 1973; Lutz and Iannaccone, 1978), but l i t t l e evidence i s offered. If c o n f l i c t leads to increased s a t i s f a c t i o n , perhaps i t should be encouraged. On the other hand, i f these writers are correct] and c o n f l i c t i s partly a symptom of d i s s a t i s -f a c t i o n , then boards should attempt to s a t i s f y their publics by a l t e r i n g their management of their educational system. 27 While some c o n f l i c t between school boards and the public i s undoubtedly inevitable, i t i s also a fact that some boards seem to experience much greater amounts of c o n f l i c t than do other boards operating under similar circumstances. One school of writers, primarily interested in the rela t i o n s h i p between school boards and administrators, has looked at the relationship between boards and the public as i t affects the way in which school systems are run. E l i o t (1959) and Blau and Scott (1960) suggest that the primary task of school boards i s to follow the advice of experts ( i . e . , administrators) and s e l l the experts' advice to the public, thus legitimating the professionals' expertise. Eulau and Prewitt (1973) and Zeigler and Jennings (1974) agree that many (Zeigler and Jennings say "most") school boards operate as legitimators, but feel that such practice i s undemocratic and improper, and leads to c o n f l i c t between board and public. Zeigler and Jennings (1974) found that most boards seldom oppose the superintendent's recommendations with regard to educational programs. They believe that i n any c o n f l i c t s i t u a t i o n the superintendent would probably be the v i c t o r . However, they point out that in many United States systems, the superintendent sets the agenda and when this i s done, the l i k e l i h o o d of c o n f l i c t i s diminished. They conclude (1974:254) that "school boards should govern or be abolished" 28 and they suggest very strongly that most boards have r e l i n -quished control to the pr o f e s s i o n a l s . 2 Zeigler and Jennings conclude that large urban di s -t r i c t s have a self-governing bureaucracy that i s responsive to the demands of the public only when an upheaval occurs, while administrators in small rural d i s t r i c t s are more res-ponsive to public pressure. It i s also suggested that boards and administrators of small d i s t r i c t s anticipate community wants more e f f e c t i v e l y , and therefore avoid c o n f l i c t both between board and administrators and between board and public (Iannaccone and Lutz, 1970). Some writers examining the matter of board versus administrator control have looked at the type of board that i s more l i k e l y to allow the administration to control the system, and have suggested that i t depends to a large extent on whether board members see themselves as trustees or dele-gates, as defined previously. Zeigler and Jennings (1974) suggest that there i s no great difference between types of boards, but Cistone (1975) makes a convincing case for viewing the two as di f f e r e n t , especially as they are viewed by the elected o f f i c i a l s . The trustee role results in decis-ions being made "for the good of the entire school d i s t r i c t " . 2 I t should be pointed out that i n the experience of the researcher, board agendae in B r i t i s h Columbia are often set by an agenda committee, over which the superintendent has minimal cont r o l . 29 The delegate role suggests that the board member w i l l "repre-sent a constituency". And there i s no point suggesting, as Tyack (1972) did, that at-large elections w i l l completely do away with constituency representation. It seems l i k e l y that many board members elected at-large are quite sure what part of the community voted for them (the 'East Side', the 'conservatives 1^ the 'old-age pensioners') and keep their constituency in mind when s i t t i n g at the board table. While much of the research did not s p e c i f i c a l l y address the question of relationships among board operating s t y l e s , community demographic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , and c o n f l i c t , some conclusions may be drawn. Most relevant to the present study i s the conclusion of some writers (Zeigler and Jennings, 1974) that trustee boards appear to operate without great amounts of c o n f l i c t in large communities, while dele-gate boards seem to operate without extensive c o n f l i c t i n small communities. Other studies have addressed more s p e c i f i c a l l y the question of the relationships among board st y l e , community demographic structure and c o n f l i c t . These writers have attempted to discover why some school boards can operate without much c o n f l i c t for many yearsj and then suddenly begin to experience considerable c o n f l i c t , sometimes enough con-f l i c t to cause board members to be defeated at the p o l l s . These studies, as was outlined e a r l i e r i n the chapter, are patterned after the work of Lutz (1975) and view boards as 30 f a l l i n g on some point on a continuum between e l i t e and arena. E l i t e boards appear to operate most s a t i s f a c t o r i l y i n homogeneous communities, while arena boards w i l l be most sa t i s f a c t o r y in heterogeneous communities. Various studies supporting t h i s viewpoint include those by Blanchard and Klein (1977), Faber (1973), Gresson (1978), Iannaccone and Lutz (1970), Johns and Kimbrough (1968), Lutz (1974), Lutz (1975), Snow (1967), Williams (1977) and Witmer (1978). There i s , therefore, considerable evidence to i n d i -cate the existence of some relationship among board style, community nature and c o n f l i c t . The precise nature of the rela t i o n s h i p i s not clear. Writers using the term "trustee boards", as t y p i f i e d by Zeigler and Jennings (1974), and writers using the term " e l i t e boards"," as t y p i f i e d by Lutz and Iannaccone (1978), agree that such boards operate schools for the good of the public at large, make decisions i n private, and believe in cabinet s o l i d a r i t y . Both schools of thought claim that such boards allow administrators to run the system, or at least, according to Lutz and Iannaccone, have considerable influence. However, Zeigler and Jennings state that trustee boards operate best in large ( i . e . , heter-ogeneous) communities, whereas Lutz and Iannaccone feel that they operate best in homogeneous ( i . e . , small) communities. Boards at the opposite end of the continuum exhibit s i m i l a r differences. "Delegate boards" (Zeigler and Jennings, 1974) and "arena boards" (Lutz and Iannaccone, 1978) have members who represent constituencies, make decis-ions in open meetings, and are w i l l i n g to debate matters in public. However, Zeigler and Jennings say that these boards allow administrators considerable power, while Lutz and Iannaccone say administrators have l i t t l e power. Moreover, Zeigler and Jennings say that delegate boards operate with l i t t l e c o n f l i c t in rural (homogeneous) communities, while Lutz and Iannaccone say they operate best in heterogeneous (urban) communities.3 There seems to be no very satisfactory answer to explain these differences of opinion. While various writers agree that boards may lessen c o n f l i c t i f they match their operating styles to the nature of their communities, these writers offer c o n f l i c t i n g views as to which style i s approp-r i a t e . Although Brayne (1979) was not concerned with board-public c o n f l i c t , his idea of open and closed operating styles c l o s e l y p a r a l l e l s the concept of trustee-delegate boards, and ^I t should be noted that a further difference between researchers using the terms "trustee and delegate boards" and those using the terms " e l i t e and arena boards" i s that the former speak of communities in terms of size, while the l a t t e r refer to 'homogeneous' and 'heterogeneous' communities. While large communities are usually quite heterogeneous, and small communities are usually less so, the rela t i o n s h i p i s not perfect. The effect of this difference i n conceptual lenses w i l l provide the basis for one of the problems to be examined in Chapter Four. 32 i n the implications he drew from this finding he suggests that Zeigler and Jennings (1974) are correct in their notion that closed (or trustee) boards operate s a t i s f a c t o r i l y in an urban se t t i n g . Brayne drew this conclusion from the fact that the subject of his study, P a c i f i c School Board, operated i n a closed fashion and had not experienced c o n f l i c t with i t s com-munity for some years. It i s interesting to note, however, that shortly after Brayne concluded his study, P a c i f i c School Board did experience c o n f l i c t with the public, and various public groups complained about the lack of board response to the i r requests for action on certain matters. To show more c l e a r l y the s i m i l a r i t i e s and differences between the three concepts of board style and their r e l a t i o n -ship to community nature, the concepts have been compared in Figure 1 following. 33 TRUSTEE ELITE CLOSED 1. Member Orientation Members act for good of entire d i s t r i c t 2. Decisions Usually made in committee, or Group s t r i v e s for consensus. in caucus. 3. Administration Has consider-able influence - leads board. Has consider-able influence & makes admin-i s t r a t i v e decisions. . I n i t i a t e s or verbal-izes large proportion of requests or demands. 4. Interaction with Public L i t t l e . Administration acts as 1 gate keeper'. Some, but only with special interest groups. 5. Operate best in Urban areas Homogeneous communities Urban areas DELEGATE ARENA OPEN 1. Member Orientation Members represent constituenc ies 2. Decisions Made in open meetings, often with s p l i t votes. * 3. Administration Has consider-able power. Often makes administrative decisions Has less power Board often makes adminis-t r a t i v e decisions * 4. Interaction with Public Considerable. d i r e c t access Public has to board. * 5. Operate best in Rural areas Heterogeneous communities * Zeigler & Jen-nings (1974) Lutz & Ianna-ccone (1978) Brayne (1979) FIGURE 1 COMPARISON OF CHARACTERISTICS OF BOARD STYLE CONCEPTS * Brayne's study was a case study. He did not examine "open" boards. SUMMARY 34 The search of l i t e r a t u r e reported in Chapter Two suggests the following points: 1.0 School Board Operating Style 1.1 School board operating styles are the result of a combination of h i s t o r i c a l forces and community values concerning representation; 1.2 School boards may be characterized according to t h e i r operating s t y l e , and placed on a continuum ranging from extremes of trustee, e l i t e , or closed to delegate, arena, or open; 1.3 Members of trustee, e l i t e or closed boards view t h e i r role as acting with unanimity for the public good, often making decisions in private; 1.4 Members of delegate, arena, or open boards view th e i r role as representing s p e c i f i c constituencies, making decisions in public meeting, and attempting to maintain open communication with their constit-uents ; 1.5 Boards seldom abandon their operating s t y l e . 2.0 Community Demography 2.1 It i s possible to characterize communities in var-ious ways: by social attitudes, by roles, by size, and by demographic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s ; 35 2.2 By using census data, communities may be placed on a continuum ranging from homogeneous, where inhab-i t a n t s are similar to one another with regard to to demographic variables such as mother tongue, income, age, education and occupation, to heterogeneous, where inhabitants are d i s s i m i l a r with regard to such variables. 3.0 Board-Public C o n f l i c t 3.1 Various writers in the f i e l d s of education and p o l i t i c a l science have considered the relationship between school board operating styles and c o n f l i c t and have decided that there i s a connection between board operating st y l e , community demography, and board-public c o n f l i c t . There i s disagreement over the nature of this relationship, however. 3.2 Some writers (Zeigler and Jennings, 1974) have said that e l i t e , trustee, or closed boards w i l l operate with minimum c o n f l i c t in large (heterogeneous) com-munities, while others (Lutz and Iannaccone, 1978) have said that such boards w i l l operate with a minimum amount of c o n f l i c t in homogeneous (small) communities. 3.3 Zeigler and Jennings state that delegate, arena or open boards w i l l operate with l i t t l e c o n f l i c t i n small (homogeneous) communities, while Lutz and Iannaccone have said that such boards w i l l operate 36 with a minimum of c o n f l i c t in heterogeneous (large) communities. 3.4 Various p o l i t i c a l s c i e n t i s t s have suggested that school boards, being governing bodies operating i n a democracy, should be v i s i b l y democratic; that i s , they should allow the public access to the board at a l l times, and should try to follow the desires of the people. Opponents of this view claim that such a procedure leaves the board open to pressure groups, and that the system of electing o f f i c i a l s and voting them out of o f f i c e i f they are unsatis-factory is democratic, and more e f f i c i e n t than allowing the public to decide what issues are to be discussed. Chapter 3 CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK AND DEFINITION OF TERMS CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK As was pointed out in the f i n a l section of Chapter Two, various studies have been conducted into the possible connections among board operating s t y l e , community demogra-phic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s and board-public c o n f l i c t , and these studies have resulted in contradictory findings. There are various possible explanations for the contradictory nature of these findings, but the most l i k e l y p o s s i b i l i t i e s are either that no connection exists or that the various studies con-ta i n conceptual or methodological flaws. An examination of the various studies indicates that many of them have flaws that might well affect the results of the studies. The most serious problem seems to involve the measurement or categorization of board operating s t y l e . Most studies have r e l i e d on questionnaires for this measure, asking questions such as "Do you (the board) attempt to reach consensus?" Webb and others (1966) state that questionnaires using questions of this nature are imperfect instruments at best. They say: Interviews and questionnaires intrude as a foreign element into the soc i a l setting they would describe, 37 38 they create as well as measure attitudes, they e l i c i t a t y p i c a l roles and responses, they are limited to those who are accessible and w i l l cooperate, and the responses obtained are produced in part by dimensions of in d i v i d u a l differences irrelevant to the topic at hand (1966:1). They go on to discuss the further disadvantages inherent in the use of questionnaires as a sole measure in most s o c i a l science studies. Other authorities (Borg and G a l l , 1979; Brynner and S t r i b l e y , 1978; Glass and Stanley, 1970; Riley, 1964) make similar comments on the efficacy of questionnaires of this type. Other studies have observed boards in action. While such a technique i s probably v a l i d , these studies have been conducted on a very small scale, with as few as four boards (Minar, 1966a). A further methodological d i f f i c u l t y has occurred i n the measurement of c o n f l i c t . Studies using questionnaires have t y p i c a l l y based their ratings on the answer to a single question: "Does your board have c o n f l i c t with the public?" (Zeigler and Jennings, 1974). Other studies concerned with school board-public c o n f l i c t have used measures including defeat of board members (Lutz and Iannaccone, 1978); votes cast for losing candidates i n school board elections (Minar, 1966a); more complex measures of voting patterns (Thorsted, 1974); and observation of board meetings (Snow, 1967). A l l 39 these methods have drawbacks in that they may not adequately measure board-public c o n f l i c t , since there are many possible reasons for a candidate's defeat at the p o l l s , and obser-vation must be limited to a small number of boards. The measurement of community demographic characteris-t i c s has usually been carried out by typifying communities as homogeneous or heterogeneous by relying on the size of the community as an indicator. While size i s certainly an impor-tant factor, i t i s possible for smaller communities to be more heterogeneous than larger communities. The conceptual framework of the present study attemp-ted to reduce these problems of methodology. Stated b r i e f l y , the central problem of the study was to explore the r e l a t i o n -ships among the operating style of school boards, the nature of the communities they serve, and the amount and nature of the c o n f l i c t they experience. A method of exploring these relationships might be visualized as shown in Figure 2, where each c e l l might be examined to determine the degree of con-f l i c t i t contains. Figure 2 presents three variables that must be meas-ured and examined. In order to arrive at a satisfactory measure for each, the variables must be conceputalized i n such a way that they can be quantified. 40 COMMUNITY DEMOGRAPHIC STRUCTURE TYPE 1 TYPE 2 TYPE 3 0 P B E 0 R A A R D T Y P E •a' T Y P E •b' AMOUNT OF CONFLICT T Y P E 'c' FIGURE 2 THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN BOARD OPERATING STYLE, COMMUNITY DEMOGRAPHIC STRUCTURE, AND CONFLICT Board Operating Procedure To this point, the report on the present study has used the term 'board operating s t y l e ' to describe the way in which a board views i t s role as a representative body. Because operating style i s largely a r e f l e c t i o n of board members' attitudes, i t has commonly been measured in the past by means of questionnaires. ("Do you feel i t i s important to reach consensus?" "Do you feel you represent the entire com-munity, or a certain segment?") Webb and others (1966) suggest that questionnaires are inappropriate for such a purpose, as respondents' answers may not r e f l e c t their actions. In order to avoid having to attempt to measure board s t y l e through questionnaires, the present study measured board operating procedures instead. 41 Various writers (Blanchard and Klein, 1977; Eulau, 1972; Eulau and Prewitt, 1973; Lutz and Iannaccone, 1978; Wirt and K i r s t , 1972) have suggested that boards w i l l develop opera-ting procedures to complement or r e f l e c t their operating s t y l e s . Since the concepts of e l i t e (trustee) or arena (delegate) boards refer in part to the boards' attitudes regarding the public, i t i s reasonable to examine procedures that guide boards' relations with the public in order to decide which style a board has adopted. For instance, an e l i t e or trustee board, whose mem-bers feel that they have a mandate to act for the general good of the public as a whole, might be expected to place l i t t l e importance on operating procedures designed to ensure that individuals or groups have formal access to the board. The members of an arena or delegate board, on the other hand, might be expected to feel that their roles as representatives of a s p e c i f i c constituency require procedures designed to allow the public formal access to the board. Such access may be measured in terms of the demands or requests that come to a board. Boards that f e e l their role i s to be e l i t e (trustee) may not be p a r t i c u l a r l y concerned with public requests, while an arena (delegate) board might be eager to. receive public input in the form of requests or demands. The present study u t i l i z e d the method used by Brayne (1979) in his study of one B r i t i s h Columbia school board. Brayne used the concept of 'closed' and 'open' boards, as 42 used by Zeigler and Jennings (1974). Because the terms 'closed' and 'open' suggest a degree of approval or disappro-vel (based largely on society's present desire for 'openness' on the part of government), the study characterized boards as being a High External Demand (HED) board or a Low External  Demand (LED) board. To arrive at this measure, the number of demands or requests for action received by boards from exter-nal sources [as defined by Brayne (1979)] were divided by the to t a l number of demands received by the board during the same time span, resulting in an External Demand Index (EDI).4 The exact procedure used i s detailed in Chapter Four. The rationale behind this technique i s that boards tend to be consistent over time. If the board feels that getting the job done, operating the schools as quietly as possible, i s of paramount importance, i t might usually follow LED procedures, since, in the members' views, l i s t e n i n g to formal demands from the public requires unnecessary time and e f f o r t . If, on the other hand, the board feels that i t i s essential that everyone (board members, administrators, the press, and the public) know what demands are being made and who i s making them, i t w i l l be more l i k e l y to follow HED ^The terms 'trustee' and 'delegate' and ' e l i t e ' and 'arena' were discarded for similar reasons. A l l board mem-bers in B r i t i s h Columbia are called 'trustees', which might be confusing, and the term ' e l i t e ' has a pejorative conno-tatio n in North American society. In this conception, LED boards would be closed, trustee or e l i t e , while HED boards would be open, arena, or delegate. 43 procedures, so that the sources and the nature of a l l demands are a matter of public record. Such a board w i l l therefore be more l i k e l y to hold public meetings on important issues, so that the public can have direct input into important policy decisions. It i s essential to understand what i s being measured by this procedure. The EDI i s not an indication of board responsiveness. Both LED and HED boards may or may not be responsive or unresponsive. A board that encourages (or discourages) requests to be made informally, may nonetheless try very hard to s a t i s f y those requests that are made. A board that i n s i s t s that a l l requests be made formally and that even encourages requests might then refuse to act on those requests. Furthermore, the EDI does not necessarily r e f l e c t the type of community in which the board operates. It may be argued that the residents of a small community w i l l be more w i l l i n g to make demands on their school board than w i l l residents of a large community (Iannaccone and Lutz, 1970), but one cannot predict whether those requests w i l l be made informally, through trustees or administrators, or formally, by l e t t e r or delegation. Consequently, an HED board w i l l probably have proce-dures designed to ensure that requests or demands are made formally, and w i l l receive a high proportion of i t s demands from outside the board o f f i c e . A LED board w i l l probably not have such procedures, and w i l l receive a low proportion of 44 i t s demands from outside the board o f f i c e . The EDI indicates whether a board accepts or does not accept demands formally, and informs or does not inform the public as to the source of those demands. Community Demographic Characteristics For the purposes of this study, a 'community' was defined as as geographical region coterminous with one of the seventy-five B r i t i s h Columbia school d i s t r i c t s . At f i r s t glance," that d e f i n i t i o n may seem to be inconsistent with the common conception of a community, as most people think of a community as a single entity that i s characterized by f a i r l y constrained boundaries, rather than encompassing vast areas as do some B r i t i s h Columbia school d i s t r i c t s . However, Poplin (1972:12) suggests that there are a large number of de f i n i t i o n s of community in use, and a l l have a certain degree of legitimacy or usefulness. . Poplin (1972:13) gives one d e f i n i t i o n as a number of people l i v i n g i n a certain geographical area, bound together by common inter e s t s and spheres of communication. Given that d e f i -n i t i o n , the notion of a school d i s t r i c t as a community presents few conceptual d i f f i c u l t i e s . Before describing the s p e c i f i c variables selected for the present study, i t i s important to concretize the ration-ale used. As was pointed out in Chapter Two, various studies have attempted to discover a correlation between board-public c o n f l i c t and s p e c i f i c c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of communities such as socio-economic status (high S.E.S. communities and low S.E.S. communities, Minar" 1966b); educational l e v e l of communities (Agger and others, 1964); community power struc-tures (Goldhammer, 1955), and community size (Zeigler and Jennings, 1974), without reaching any d e f i n i t e conclusions. On the other hand, some studies (Iannaccone and Lutz, 1970) have found a linkage between board-public c o n f l i c t and the heterogeneity of communities. Hence, the present study was concerned mainly with r e l a t i v e degrees of heterogeneity of communities rather than with comparisons between communities based on any given variable. For instance, i t might be thought that a community with a large proportion of young people would have more (or less) c o n f l i c t with the school board than a community with a smaller proportion of young people. A study designed to test such an idea would be con-cerned with the proportion of young people in each community. The present study, on the other hand, wished to examine the idea that r e l a t i v e heterogeneity of communities i s an impor-tant factor in board-public c o n f l i c t . As as result, the study did not compare communities on the basis of the percen-tage of young people in each community; rather i t arrived at a l e v e l of heterogeneity for each community partly by examining the d i s t r i b u t i o n of ages in the population, and comparing those l e v e l s . For example, using this method, Community A, with a d i s t r i b u t i o n of 60% of people aged 0 to 46 40, would have a heterogeneity index the same as Community B, with 40% of the population aged 0 - 4 0 , i f there were only two groups (0-40; 41 and older). Following that rationale, i t was decided to use the variables reported by S t a t i s t i c s Canada from the 1971 and 1976 censuses: age, income, occupation, education and mother tongue. These variables have been selected by various authorities (Biggar and Martin, 1976; Erbe, 1975; Fischer, 1971) as important in determining community heterogeneity. Each variable was grouped into three or four groups, and treated as described in Chapter Four. Along with heterogeneity, i t was decided to examine possible relationships between External Demand Index and demographic variables examined by previous researchers, including tax assessments (Minar, 1966b) and size (Zeigler and Jennings," 1974). C o n f l i c t Handy (1976) analyzes c o n f l i c t as the undesirable outcome or manifestation of disagreement, caused by disagree-ment over goals and objectives or over t e r r i t o r y . C o n f l i c t leads to goal displacement and a subsequent weakening of the organization or system. Handy's implied d e f i n i t i o n of c o n f l i c t as the dys-functional aspect of disagreement or dispute i s convenient but not p r a c t i c a l for use in a study involving perceptions of 47 c o n f l i c t , as i t provides a rather coarse screen. If the subjects were asked to l i s t c o n f l i c t s they had experienced in a given period, and c o n f l i c t were defined as a disagreement that had an adverse effect, several things might occur. A l l respondents might regard their perceptual data in the same l i g h t , and the answers to the question would be va l i d for the purposes of the study. Some respondents might discard some instances of disagreement because the effect was not s u f f i c i e n t l y adverse to meet their own c r i t e r i a , while others might include instances that affected themselves adversely but might discard other instances that did not so affect themselves. There i s no way of knowing which view respon-dents would take. It would therefore be helpful to define c o n f l i c t in a way that i s less open to mis-intepretation. M i l l e r and Simons define c o n f l i c t as "that state of a social r e l a t i o n s h i p in which incompatible interests between two or more parties give r i s e to a struggle between them" (M i l l e r and Simons, 1974:8). This d e f i n i t i o n seems to offer possi-b i l i t i e s as a d e f i n i t i o n that could be used in research, as the terms involved are less open to interpretation than are the terms used in Handy's d e f i n i t i o n . The major problem with M i l l e r and Simons' d e f i n i t i o n i s that the term "incompatible interests" i s open to i n t e r -pretation. What kind of interests?" Long-term? Short term? Real? Perceived? In order to avoid that d i f f i c u l t y , the present study used the following d e f i n i t i o n of c o n f l i c t , 48 modified from M i l l e r and Simon's d e f i n i t i o n : c o n f l i c t is a disagreement a r i s i n g from perceived incompatible i n t e r e s t s between two or more p a r t i e s , resolution of which requires an extraordinary a l l o c a t i o n of resources. This d e f i n i t i o n i s compatible with those d e f i n i t i o n s advanced by authors previously cit e d , but offers less scope for mis-interpretation, and so i s more v a l i d as an opera-t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n for a study. It was thought that c o n f l i c t could be measured by examining the symptoms of c o n f l i c t , which were defined as acrimonious incidents or incidents involving f r i c t i o n between school boards and the public. The study examined the symptoms of c o n f l i c t under three headings: amount, int e n s i t y , and subject. The amount of c o n f l i c t was measured by .the number of incidents involving acrimony or f r i c t i o n over a certain period of time. The i n t e n s i t y of c o n f l i c t was measured by the seriousness of those incidents, as perceived by those involved and by observers. The subject of the c o n f l i c t focussed on the subject that triggered the incident. Such subjects included instruc-t i o n , s t a f f , pupil welfare, and physical plant concerns. Applying these measures to the conceptualization shown in Figure 2 (page 40) results in a more complete repre-sentation , as shown in Figure 3. FIGURE 3 RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX, VARIABLES OF COMMUNITY HETEROGENEITY, AND AMOUNT OR INTENSITY OF CONFLICT Note: In this Figure, External Demand Index i s shown as continuous variable, ranging from LED to HED, referring Low and High External Demand. 50 For ease of conceptualization, Figure 3 suggests that there are eighteen c e l l s to be analyzed for each school board examined. In the actual analysis of data, both 'amount' and 'intensity' of c o n f l i c t were treated as continuous variables. 'Subject' of c o n f l i c t was analyzed separately. The object of that analysis was to ascertain i f there i s a r e l a -tionship between External Demand Index and/or community heterogeneity and the issues that result in c o n f l i c t . In order to examine the relationships discussed i n th i s section, certain assumptions were made. ASSUMPTIONS OF THE CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK 1. Board operating procedures can be measured and placed on a continuum; 2. The demographic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of B r i t i s h Columbia communities (the school d i s t r i c t s ) can be measured and placed on a continuum; 3. C o n f l i c t arises from time to time between boards and the public, and the amount and intensity of this c o n f l i c t can be measured, and i t s subjects can be determined. DEFINITION OF TERMS Board Operating Procedures The procedures that a school board follows in i t s e f f o r t s to represent the residents of the school d i s t r i c t are termed board operating procedures. Examples of such 51 procedures might include the existence of a public question period, and regulations regarding requests or demands. Co n f l i c t C o n f l i c t i s a disagreement arising from perceived incompatible interests between two or more parties, reso-l u t i o n of which requires an extraordinary a l l o c a t i o n of resources. Demand A demand i s any request for action that comes to a school board. While such requests may originate from a variety of sources, the present study i s concerned only with the way in which the demands are articulated at the board table: whether they are put forward from an internal source (a trustee or a d i s t r i c t administrator) or an external source. Heterogeneous Community This i s a community whose members have d i f f e r e n t aims, backgrounds, l i f e s t y l e s and incomes. The community i s often large in population, and often has a wide range of p o l i t i c a l viewpoints (Poplin, 1972). High External Demand Board A High External Demand (HED) board i s a board that i d e n t i f i e s the sources of demands in i t s minutes as origi n a t i n g from a s p e c i f i c person or group, and receives a 52 large percentage of the to t a l demands considered at the board table from sources outside of the board o f f i c e . An HED board w i l l conduct almost a l l of i t s business in public meetings. Homogeneous Community Theoretically, this i s a community whose members have simi l a r aims, backgrounds, and l i f e s t y l e s . The community i s often small (in to t a l numbers of inhabitants) and often con-servative in viewpoint (Poplin, 1972). In the present study, the term i s used only in a r e l a t i v e sense. There i s no doubt that some B r i t i s h Columbia school d i s t r i c t s are far more homogeneous than are others, but i t would be stretching a point to suggest that the members of the community that i s a school d i s t r i c t have "similar aims, backgrounds and l i f e -s t y l e s " . Low External Demand Board A Low External Demand (LED) board i s a board that either f a i l s to id e n t i f y the o r i g i n a l sources of demands in i t s minutes or receives a large percentage of i t s demands from within the board o f f i c e s . LED boards may conduct a considerable amount of business i n closed (in-camera or committee) meetings. DELIMITATIONS AND LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY The study examined the operating procedure of a l l school boards in B r i t i s h Columbia. Generalizations drawn from that examination are limited to the extent to which B r i t i s h Columbia boards are l i k e school boards in other areas. The relationships between board operating procedure, community demographic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , and board-public c o n f l i c t were examined in twenty-seven of the seventy-five B r i t i s h Columbia school d i s t r i c t s as detailed i n the following chapter. The boards chosen for this aspect of the study included boards at either end of the spectrum of operating procedures and boards clustered about the mid-point of the range. The extent to which the conclusions can be generalized i s determined by the extent to which the school d i s t r i c t s examined are ty p i c a l of school d i s t r i c t s of similar c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s in B r i t i s h Columbia and i n other areas. However, care has been taken to ensure that d i s t r i c t s selected are ty p i c a l of B r i t i s h Columbia school d i s t r i c t s . Other li m i t a t i o n s concern the effectiveness of the measuring techniques used in the study and the v a l i d i t y of board member perceptions as to what constituted board-community c o n f l i c t . Chapter 4 THE RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODOLOGY It was suggested in Chapter Two that the previous research in the f i e l d , on which the present study was based, had not resulted in conclusions firm enough to allow for the generation of testable hypotheses. It was, therefore, decided to approach the study as an exploratory study, defined by F e l l i n and others (1969) as follows: Exploratory studies are empirical research inves-tigations which have as their purpose the formulation of a problem or a set of questions, developing hypo-theses, or increasing an investigator's f a m i l i a r i t y with a phenomenon or a setting to lay the basis for more precise future research. The intent to c l a r i f y or modify concepts may sometimes be predominant. Relatively systematic procedures for obtaining empir-i c a l observations and/or for the analysis of data may be used. Both quantitative and qu a l i t a t i v e descrip-tions of the phenomenon are often provided and the investigator t y p i c a l l y conceptualizes the i n t e r -r e l a t i o n s among properties of the phenomenon being observed. A variety of data c o l l e c t i o n procedures may be employed in the r e l a t i v e l y intensive study of a small number of behavioural units. Methods which are employed include such procedures as interviewing, participant observation, and content analysis. Rep-resentative sampling procedures are t y p i c a l l y not used. In some studies, there i s manipulation of an independent variable in order to locate i t s poten-t i a l e f f e c t s (1969:255). F e l l i n and others set forth three subcategories of exploratory studies. The present study f a l l s most nearly into the subcategory of combined exploratory-descriptive studies, defined as follows: 54 55 Combined exploratory-descriptive studies are those exploratory studies which seek to thoroughly describe a p a r t i c u l a r phenomenon. The concern may be with one behavioural unit, as in a case study, for which both empirical and theoretical analyses are made. The purpose of these studies i s to develop ideas and the-o r e t i c a l generalizations. Descriptions are in both quantitative and q u a l i t a t i v e form, and the accumula-tion of detailed information by such means as p a r t i c -ipant observation may be found. Sampling procedures are f l e x i b l e , and l i t t l e concern i s usually given to systematic representativeness (1969:256). In order to conduct such a study, i t i s helpful to focus on certain s p e c i f i c problems. THE PROBLEM The central problem was to ascertain whether the rela t i o n s h i p between a school board's External Demand Index and the demographic ch a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the community i s asso-ciated with the amount, intensity and subject of c o n f l i c t experienced by the board in i t s dealings with the community. As was related in Chapter One, a search of the pertinent l i t e r a t u r e indicated that various other questions concerning board-public c o n f l i c t as well as board operating procedures had not been thoroughly researched. Because of the lack of material i n the l i t e r a t u r e , and because the data needed to attempt to answer the central question could also be used to investigate these other questions, i t was decided to expand the scope of the study s l i g h t l y . One of the variables examined as part of the central problem was board operating procedure. The l i t e r a t u r e con-tains a variety of opinions as to the factors that influence 56 operating procedures. Some authorities have suggested that board operating procedures might be influenced by variables such as d i s t r i c t size (Lutz, 1975); heterogeneity (Lutz and Iannaccone, 1978); wealth (Minar, 1966a); board size (Salisbury, 1967) or location (Blanchard and Klein, 1977). As a r e s u l t , these variables were chosen for examination of relationships involving operating procedures, as measured by the EDI. Another variable examined as part of the central problem was c o n f l i c t . While the l i t e r a t u r e discusses the amount of c o n f l i c t experienced between boards and the public, and suggests some factors that might influence the amount of c o n f l i c t , the l i t e r a t u r e i s s i l e n t regarding the topics or sub j ects that might lead to c o n f l i c t , and i s also s i l e n t regarding the i n t e n s i t y of c o n f l i c t . It was thought that an examination of these variables might add to knowledge about board-public re l a t i o n s , so the amount, subject and intensity of c o n f l i c t were examined with respect to their relationships with EDI and certain variables i d e n t i f i e d as possibly being i n f l u e n t i a l on EDI, including d i s t r i c t size, heterogeneity and d i s t r i c t assessment. The amount, subject and intensity of c o n f l i c t were also examined with respect to their r e l a -tionship to each other. With regard to the topics or subjects chosen as the s p e c i f i c subjects of c o n f l i c t for the examination, they were selected following an examination of school board minutes. 57 As w i l l be explained l a t e r i n this chapter, school board minutes were examined to establish the External Demand Index (EDI). During the course of this examination, i t was noted that various topics occurred frequently. These topics (physical plant, pupil welfare, s t a f f , and instruction) were selected as possible subjects of c o n f l i c t to be examined for possible relationships with other variables. The central question, regarding relationships among EDI, community c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , and the amount of board-public c o n f l i c t , required two examinations, because of the disagreement found in the l i t e r a t u r e . Some authorities speak of d i s t r i c t size as being important, while others claim that heterogeneity i s a c r i t i c a l variable. While i t was recog-nized that size and heterogeneity are closely related, i t was thought that i t would be worthwhile to explore both r e l a t i o n -ships; that i s , (1) d i s t r i c t heterogeneity, EDI, and amount of c o n f l i c t , and (2) d i s t r i c t size, EDI, and amount of c o n f l i c t . To a s s i s t in answering the problems, the statement of the problem was restated i n the following s p e c i f i c prob-lems and sub-problems to be examined. 1. Are there s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationships between EDI and variables such as d i s t r i c t size, property assessment, board size, heterogeneity, superintendent appointment, and d i s t r i c t location that might help explain the operating pro-cedures (as measured by EDI) adopted by boards? 2. Are there s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationships between 58 the amount of c o n f l i c t experienced by a d i s t r i c t and v a r i -ables such as EDI, d i s t r i c t size, assessment, heterogeneity, int e n s i t y of c o n f l i c t , subject of c o n f l i c t , and d i s t r i c t location? 3. Are there s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationships between the subject of c o n f l i c t and variables such as EDI, d i s t r i c t s i z e , property assessment, heterogeneity, intensity of con-f l i c t , amount of c o n f l i c t and d i s t r i c t location? 4. Are there s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationships between the i n t e n s i t y of c o n f l i c t and variables such as EDI , d i s t r i c t s i z e , property assessment, heterogeneity, amount of c o n f l i c t , subject of c o n f l i c t , and d i s t r i c t location? 5.1 Are there s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationships among EDI, heterogeneity and amount of c o n f l i c t ? 5.2 Are there s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationships among EDI, d i s t r i c t size and amount of c o n f l i c t ? EXAMINATION OF THE PROBLEMS In order to examine the problems and sub-problems, the following steps were carried out. School Board Operating Procedures In order to determine the operating procedures of school boards in B r i t i s h Columbia, the minutes of a l l board meetings open to the public and some 1in-camera' meetings held during 1978 were examined. Copies of these minutes are on f i l e at the Ministry of Education in V i c t o r i a , and may be 59 inspected upon arrangement with the appropriate Ministry o f f i c i a l . Technically, minutes of 'regular' and 'in-camera' meetings are supposed to be submitted separately by the school boards and f i l e d separately so the public does not have access to confidential minutes. In practice, however, some boards do not submit the minutes separately, and they are, therefore, f i l e d together by the Ministry. It was therefore possible to inspect the 'in-camera' minutes of some f i f t e e n of the seventy-five B r i t i s h Columbia school d i s t r i c t s and to reach certain conclusions regarding the type of busi-ness transacted at these closed meetings. The demands or requests received at the board table by each school d i s t r i c t were tabulated under one of two headings: i n t e r n a l and external as described by Brayne (1979), depending on whether the demand was brought to the table by someone from within the board o f f i c e (a trustee, the superintendent," the secretary-treasurer, or another d i s t r i c t administrator) or by someone from outside the o f f i c e (a parent, a group, a p r i n c i p a l , the teachers' association, e t c . ) . In carrying out this tabulation, only the immediate source of the request was considered. A request that a school bus route be changed might appear in the minutes as a l e t t e r from a parent, a presentation from a delegation, a request from a superintendent, or a motion from a trustee. In the f i r s t two cases, the demand was categorized as 60 external. In the l a s t two cases, the demand was categorized as i n t e r n a l , even though the request may have originated with parents in each case and was simply put forward by a trustee or d i s t r i c t o f f i c i a l . In that case, however, the originator of the demand had no firsthand contact with the board as a corporate body, and the board was not acting in an open manner, as defined by Brayne (1979). If the study were dependent on the minutes of a few meetings of a few boards, this method of ascertaining board procedures might be suspect. As Lutz (1975) points out, how-ever, when ^ a board operates in a consistent fashion over many meetings, one may look upon the procedure as being well defined. Not every demand was included i n the tabulation. Before commencing the tabulation, several categories of demands that would be excluded were l i s t e d : 1. Personnel matters, including appointments, resigna-tions, leaves of absence, and so on, were excluded, as some boards deal with these matters in open meeting and some boards deal with them 'in-camera'; 2. Items that boards must decide on according to the Public Schools Act of B r i t i s h Columbia were also excluded, as a l l boards deal with these as routine matters. Items in t h i s category include budget allocations, student suspensions, non-instructional days and appointment of trustees to committees; 61 3. Requests for student f i e l d t r i p s were excluded, as almost a l l d i s t r i c t s review such requests as a matter of course, and the number of requests i s a direct function of the size of the d i s t r i c t . A very large d i s t r i c t would, therefore, have a large number of requests, which would skew the proportion of requests from outside the central o f f i c e , since these requests are made by the schools. Before undertaking the analysis of minutes, some concern was f e l t regarding the s u i t a b i l i t y of board minutes for this type of research. It was feared that some boards might not be s p e c i f i c enough in their minutes to indicate the o r i g i n of the demands ar r i v i n g at the board table. To a large extent, this fear proved to be unfounded. Out of seventy-five boards examined, th i r t y - f o u r were found to keep minutes that were complete in every d e t a i l , including items such as the names of observers and a precis of a l l discussion that took place. Another thirty-three boards kept minutes that were complete enough for the purpose of this study, although they did not contain as much d e t a i l as the t h i r t y -four mentioned above. Of the seventy-five B r i t i s h Columbia boards, only eight kept minutes that were of no use to th i s study. These eight boards simply recorded the mover, seconder and disposition of each motion originated. For instance, a motion to the effect that a vending machine be removed from a school contained no indication as to the source of the request; whether i t was a parent, a trustee, or 62 another source. Of the seventy-five boards whose minutes were examined then, sixty-seven formed the population from which the sample was drawn. After tabulating demands received by these s i x t y -seven B r i t i s h Columbia school d i s t r i c t s at their regular meetings in 1978, and categorizing the demands as Internal or External, each board was assigned an External Demand Index, found by dividing the number of External Demands received by each board by the tota l number of demands received by the board. As well as tabulating and characterizing each demand, a note was made as to the nature of the demand. The number of meetings, the time of the meetings, and the number of trustees on each board was also noted. After carrying out the procedure noted above to obtain an External Demand Index for each board, interviews were held with the Ministry o f f i c i a l most conversant with B r i t i s h Columbia school boards and their operating proce-dures. This o f f i c i a l was asked to characterize each board as an 'open' or 'closed' board according to the c r i t e r i a set forth in the preceding chapter of this study. The character-izations of this o f f i c i a l were used as a check on the cate-gorization of boards indicated by the External Demand Index for each board. The perceptions of the o f f i c i a l , who has worked with the school d i s t r i c t s of the province for many years, agreed with the categorization of the researcher in 85% of the cases, and the remaining cases were those about 63 which the o f f i c i a l was least c e r t a i n . This agreement pro-vided some reassurance of the v a l i d i t y of the method chosen to analyze school board operating procedure, at least in a large proportion of the cases. Selection of the Sample It was o r i g i n a l l y intended to include a l l seventy-f i v e B r i t i s h Columbia school boards in the study. Consulta-tion with various authorities, however, indicated that such a procedure was unnecessary and possibly unwise. Riley (1964) points out that when few variables are to be considered, small samples are as s t a t i s t i c a l l y viable as large samples. Furthermore, he also states that when one has information that can be used to select a representational sample with reasonable accuracy, i t would be wasteful not to make use of that information. However, i t i s essential that a l l v a r i -ables be considered before making the selection, and that s u f f i c i e n t cases be chosen for each variable so that a l l variables are represented by several cases. In the present study, the need to consider several variables would make the sample a rather large percentage of the t o t a l population, but as Riley says, each case may repre-sent or include several variables, and the dominant variables can be ascertained by means of factor or regression analysis when the data are analyzed. A further reason for l i m i t i n g the size of the sample concerned the possible effect of continual fishing i n a 64 limited pool. School board members have considerable demands made on their time, and the more demands made, the greater the probability that they w i l l refuse to cooperate. As has been pointed out e a r l i e r in this study, school boards have not been the subject of much study in the past, but the amount of research concerning school boards i s increasing, and i t i s possible that a time w i l l come when school board members fe e l that they have given researchers a l l the time they can reasonably be expected to give. It therefore behooves researchers to l i m i t their demands as much as pos-s i b l e so that future researchers do not meet with a lack of cooperation from board members. F i n a l l y , the success of this study was dependent on a good response from each school board studied. By li m i t i n g the number of boards surveyed, i t was possible to follow up the i n i t i a l request with further requests in order to achieve a s a t i s f a c t o r y response from a l l boards selected for the study. The sample was selected after examination of two variables; External Demand Index and community heterogeneity, as follows. External demand index. Analysis of school board minutes showed that the number of demands received by boards ranged from six to fi f t y - s e v e n . The External Demand Index (EDI) ranged from .31 to .92, indicating that the board with the highest EDI received 92% of i t s demands from external sources, while the board with the lowest EDI received 31% of 65 i t s demands from external sources. The mean EDI was .57, the median was .58, and the mode was .50. Because the study was interested in examining boards that were obviously either HED or LED, i t was f i r s t decided to select the sample from either end of the scale, namely the ten boards with the higest EDI and the ten with the lowest, giving a sample of twenty boards. After further considera-tion however, i t was decided that such a procedure might eliminate useful information concerning those boards in the middle of the continuum. It was therefore decided to select seven from either extreme and seven from the middle of the continuum. There were, however, three boards at the seventh EDI value, so rather than choose the upper six only, i t was decided to choose the upper nine, the lowest nine, and the nine f a l l i n g about the mid-point of the continuum, resulting i n a t o t a l of twenty-seven boards. This procedure was modi-f i e d s l i g h t l y in order to include boards in large d i s t r i c t s that f e l l just outside of the upper and lower nine. The t o t a l remained at twenty-seven. These boards are shown i n Table I, together with their EDI. It was suggested (Page 42) that boards that are not concerned as to whether they are open or participatory (or appear to be) would not have any s p e c i f i c procedure, while boards desiring to be open or participatory would have a s p e c i f i c procedure. As was stated previously, i t was thought that differences in EDI might be attributable partly to board 66 procedures with regard to requests. The twenty-seven boards l i s t e d in Table I were contacted and asked i f they have set procedures for requests to the board. Results appear i n column 3 of Table I. Boards were also asked i f they have a set question period, as i t was thought that this might also r e f l e c t the board's operating procedures. Results appear in column 4 of Table I. The data were analyzed by means of a chi-square procedure for more than two samples for board procedures regarding requests and for regulations concerning question periods. Results are shown in Tables 11(a) and 11(b). The chi square values indicate that there i s a strong re l a t i o n s h i p between EDI and operating procedure as indicated by (1) question periods and (2) regulations for submissions or requests to the board. Having tested the EDI i n this way, i t was f e l t that the measurement of board operating style s a t i s f i e s the requirements of construct v a l i d i t y as described by Borg and G a l l (1979) as i t d i f f e r e n t i a t e s between groups defined by a t o t a l l y d i f f e r e n t measure. Borg and G a l l state that a significance of .05 i s a satisfactaory demonstration of internal v a l i d i t y using this procedure. 67 TABLE I CALCULATED EDI COMPARED TO PROCEDURES AS STATED BY BOARD OFFICES BOARD NO. EDI PROCEDURE FOR PROCEDURE FOR REQUESTS QUESTION PERIOD 101 .92 1 2 102 .81 1 2 103 .77 1 2 104 .75 1 2 105 .75 1 2 106 .73 1 2 107 .72 1 2 108 .72 1 2 109 .68 1 2 110 .61 0 2 111 .60 1 0 112 .59 1 1 113 .59 0 0 114 .58 1 2 115 .58 0 Q 116 .55 1 2 117 .54 0 1 118 .53 1 2 119 .44 0 1 120 .42 0 1 121 .40 0 1 122 .38 0 2 123 .38 1 2 124 .36 0 0 125 .36 0 0 126 .32 0 0 127 .31 0 1 Key to Table I Procedure for Requests 0 = no set procedure 1 = i n writing to o f f i c e or present brief Question Period 0 = no question period 1 = at end of meeting or after adjournment 2 = at set time during meeting or at any time 68 TABLE 11(a) RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN EDI AND BOARD REGULATIONS REGARDING REQUESTS FROM THE PUBLIC EDI REGULATION FOR REQUESTS8-ROW SUBTOTAL None In Writing High 0 (4) 9 (5) 9 Middle 4 (4) 5 (5) 9 Low 8 (4) 1 (5) 9 COLUMN SUBTOTAL 12 15 27 aExpected frequencies in parentheses TABLE 11(b) RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN EDI AND REGULATIONS REGARDING QUESTION PERIODS EDI QUESTION PERIOD^ None At End of Meeting At Set Time High Middle Low 0 (1.66) 2 (1.66) 3 (1.66) 0 (2.33) 3 (2.33) 4 (2.33) 9 (5) 4 (5) 2 (5) COLUMN SUBTOTAL 5 7 15 Expected frequencies in parentheses. Value for Table 11(a) = 14.4 Significance .0001 Value for Table 11(b) = 11.69 Significance .02 69 Demographic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of communities. Demographic data for the twenty-seven d i s t r i c t s selected for the sample were obtained from the B r i t i s h Columbia Ministry of Education. The data were based on the 1971 or 1976 census figures, and were divided into school d i s t r i c t s by the Census Division of S t a t i s t i c s Canada. The demographic variables selected were age, occupation, l e v e l of income, education, and mother tongue, as outlined in Chapter Three (Page 46). Figures for age and mother tongue were available i n 1976 data, while 1971 figures were used for occupation, level of income, and education. The data analysis technique used depended on percentage figures rather than head count. In view of the fact that a comparison of p a r t i a l 1976 figures regarding occupation and education indicated that the percentages had not changed appreciably over the five-year period, i t was decided that i t would be s t a t i s t i c a l l y reasonable to use figures from the two years. The analysis of data follows a procedure devised by Lieberson (1969), based on work o r i g i n a l l y done in connection with language d i v e r s i t y . This procedure has been widely used i n f i e l d s other than education. It has been used i n studies concerning segregation and race relations (Balakrishnan, 1976; Biggar and Martin, 1976; Erbe, 1975; Fischer, 1971; Lee, 1976; Lewis, 1977; Lowery, 1972; Meade, 1972), p o l i t i c a l science (Kory, 1972; Noell, 1974; Nowak, 1977; Ray and Singer, 1973; Sullivan, 1972; Wilcox, 1973), effects of 70 population density on health and attitudes (Bee, 1976; Levy and Herzog , 1974), the recognition accorded to s c i e n t i s t s (Blau, 1976) and d i s t r i b u t i o n of services (Fararo and Kosaka, 1976). As far as could be determined, the only study in the f i e l d of education that has used the technique was conducted by Cistone (1974). The community under study i s described in terms of the probability that randomly paired members of the popula-tion w i l l be alike in terms of a given demographic variable, i n order to describe the community in terras of homogeneity or heterogeneity (or in terms of degrees of homogeneity or heterogeneity). As was noted e a r l i e r (Page 52), 'homogeneous' and 'heterogeneous' are r e l a t i v e terms. This i s demonstrated by the analysis of census data appearing in Table III. A com-pl e t e l y homogeneous community would have an index of 0 while a completely heterogeneous community would have an index of .71. The range of indices i s from .4727 to .5769, indicating that while some school d i s t r i c t s i n B r i t i s h Columbia are extremely heterogeneous, none are very homogeneous. However, a d i s t r i c t with an index of .49 or less i s far more homogen-eous than a d i s t r i c t with an index of .54 or greater. For the purposes of the present study, demographic variables were grouped as follows: 71 (a) Mother tongue English Asian (Chinese, Japanese, Indo-Pakistani) A l l other (b) Education Grade 12 or less Non-University Post-Secondary 1 or more years of University (c) Income (1971 figures) $8,000 or less per year $8,001 to $12,000 per year $12,001 or more per year (d) Occupation Professional (Managerial, Sciences, Teaching, Medicine) White c o l l a r (Crafts, C l e r i c a l , Sales Service) Extra-active (Farming, Fishing, Forestry, Mining, Proces-sing) Production/Building (Machining, Fabricating, Contruction, Transportation). (e) Age 19 years or less 20 - 44 years 45 years or more making a t o t a l of sixteen groups. These sixteen groups were chosen following the advice of authorities (Lee, 1976; Lewis, 1977; Meade, 1972; Bee, 72 1976) who have used Lieberson's method in various studies. These authorities f e e l that three or four groups are an appropriate number for any given variable, providing each group has at least 10% of the population, as fewer groups f a i l to provide s u f f i c i e n t d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n . The groups chosen for the present study were selected aft e r an examination of the census figures for a l l B r i t i s h Columbia school d i s t r i c t s . These categories resulted i n groups with a s i g n i f i c a n t percentage of the population in each category. If the technique were to be used in other provinces, d i f f e r e n t categories might have to be used. (In Quebec, for instance, mother tongue might be French, English, or other). The results of the procedure are shown in Table III .5 EDI and heterogeneity. Table IV i s a compilation of Tables I and I I I , indicating EDI and rank order, rank order of popula-t i o n , and heterogeneity and rank order.6 Inspection of Table IV reveals that in the upper, middle, and lower third of the twenty-seven d i s t r i c t s as ranked by decreasing EDI, there was a wide variation in heterogeneity. Among the nine d i s t r i c t s with the highest EDI, that i s , those d i s t r i c t s that ^Details of the methods used to calculate these indices are given in Appendix C. ^The raw population figures are not supplied, as those figures would enable readers to i d e n t i f y d i s t r i c t s . D i s t r i c t s were told they would not be i d e n t i f i e d or i d e n t i f i -able in the report of the study. 73 received the greatest percentage of requests coming to the board table from sources outside of the board ofMce, there were the twenty-fourth and twenty-fifth most heterogeneous d i s t r i c t s . Also among the highest EDI d i s t r i c t s were the second and th i r d most heterogeneous d i s t r i c t s . In the lowest nine d i s t r i c t s ranked with respect to EDI there were the twenty-sixth and twenty-third most hetero-geneous d i s t r i c t s , and the f i f t h and f i r s t . Table V shows Pearson r values for relationships between combinations of the variables shown in Table IV. Table V indicates that while there i s strong ( s i g n i f i c a n t at the .001 l e v e l ) relationship between the size of the d i s t r i c t and i t s heterogeneity (the larger the d i s t r i c t population the more heterogeneous i t is) , and a strong ( s i g n i f i c a n t at the .07 level) relationship between EDI and population (the larger the d i s t r i c t population the greater the tendency to have a low EDI), there i s no relationship betwen EDI and het-erogeneity. Because d i s t r i c t s of high and low heterogeneity were spread across the range of EDI , an opportunity was presented for a further reduction of the sample. It was possible to select two d i s t r i c t s with high heterogeneity and two with low heterogeneity from the upper, middle, and lower thirds of the EDI range, thus allowing intensive follow-up i f the i n i t i a l returns to the conflict-measuring questionnaire were unsatisfactory. 74 The disadvantages in reducing the sample were: (1) i f the sample were reduced to twelve and follow-up s t i l l did not y i e l d r e s u l t s , there would have been i n s u f f i c i e n t data for analysis and, (2) some useful data concerning factors (including community size and v a r i a b i l i t y of s p e c i f i c items such as age that make up the heterogeneity measure) would have been l o s t . In view of these disadvantages, the sample size was kept at twenty-seven d i s t r i c t s " but twelve d i s t r i c t s were earmarked for special attention i f i n s u f f i c i e n t data were gathered from the f u l l sample. That i s , twenty-seven boards were surveyed. If responses had not been satisfactory from the twenty-seven d i s t r i c t s , a follow-up in the form of per-sonal contact with the twelve earmarked d i s t r i c t s would have been undertaken. In that way, i f response from a l l d i s t r i c t s were s a t i s f a c t o r y , a complete analysis could have been done. If the response were less than s a t i s f a c t o r y , response from the twelve d i s t r i c t s in the core sample would have allowed analysis in order to answer the central question of the study: Is there a relationship among board operating proce-dure, community homogeneity, and c o n f l i c t ? Having selected a sample based on data concerning one variable, and a core sample based on data concerning two var-iables, i t remained to measure the third variable, c o n f l i c t . 75 TABLE III HETEROGENEITY INDICES BASED ON DEMOGRAPHIC CHARACTERISTICS OF SAMPLE SCHOOL DISTRICTS DISTRICT MOTHER EDUCA- INCOME OCCUPA- AGE COMPOS-TONGUE TION TION SITE INDEX ID _ 101 0 .2578 0.2954 0.6514 0.7186 0.6334 0.5113 ID 102 0 .2718 0.3526 0.6584 0.7202 0.6282 0.5262 ID = 103 o .1978 0.3666 0.6638 0.7178 0.6536 0.5199 ID = 104 0 .1486 0.4864 0.6618 0.6742 0.6719 0.5286 ID = 105 0 .1638 0.4178 0.5568 0.6958 0.6551 0.4979 ID = 106 0 .3358 0.4062 0.6511 0.7098 0.6664 0.5539 ID = 107 0 .3198 0.4526 0.6666 0.6381 0.6646 0.5483 ID = 108 0.2550 0.3112 0.5514 0.6964 0.6626 0.4953 ID = 109 0 .2578 0.4168 0.6642 0.6712 0.6472 0.5314 ID - 110 0 .2152 0.4862 0.6574 0.5833 0.6536 0.5191 ID = 111 0 .2784 0.2650 0.6378 0.7174 0.6482 0.5094 ID _ 112 0 .1958 0.3642 0.6616 0.6910 0.6472 0.5120 ID 113 0 .2578 0.3526 0.6796 0.6958 0.6216 0.5215 ID = 114 0 .2578 0.3514 0.6638 0.6596 0.5976 0.5060 ID = 115 0 .2550 0.2814 0.4931 0.6862 0.6476 0.4727 ID = 116 0 .3350 0.4282 0.6494 0.6654 0.6578 0.5472 ID 117 0 .1818 0.6002 0.5432 0.5969 0.6552 0.5155 ID = 118 0 .1978 0.4050 0.6654 0.7210 0.6648 0.5308 ID - 119 0 .2334 0.5256 0.6488 0.6117 0.6606 0.5380 ID = 120 0 .1638 0.4178 0.6008 0.7222 0.6632 0.5136 ID = 121 0 .2262 0.3656 0.6258 0.7192 0.6536 0.5181 ID = 122 0 .2408 0.3656 0.6576 0.7174 0.6606 0.5244 ID = 123 0 .3196 0.2814 0.6341 0.7336 0.6282 0.5194 ID = 124 0 .2306 0.2808 0.6311 0.7192 0.6392 0.5002 ID = 125 0 .2306 0.4406 0.6558 0.6808 0.6398 0.5295 ID = 126 0 .1958 0.3398 0.5322 0.7162 0.5868 0.4742 ID — 127 0 .4698 0.5064 0.6554 0.5994 0.6534 0.5769 1 2 3 4 5 6 0 = complete homogeneity for a l l columns .69 = complete heterogeneity for columns 1, 2, 3, 5 .75 = complete heterogeneity for column 4 .71 = complete heterogeneity for column 6 76 TABLE IV EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX AND HETEROGENEITY BY RANK OF THE 27 BRITISH COLUMBIA SCHOOL DISTRICTS STUDIED DISTRICT EDI POPULATION INDEX OF INDEX (EDI RANK) RANK HETEROGENEITY RANK 101 .92 10 .5113 20 102 .81 5 .5262 10 103 .77 12 .5199 13 104 .75 15 .5286 9 105 .75 6 .4979 24 106 .73 10 .5539 2 107 .72 25 .5483 3 108 .72 2 .4953 25 109 .68 23 .5314 6 110 .61 26 .5191 15 111 .60 4 .5094 21 112 .59 9 .5120 19 113 .59 21 .5215 12 114 .58 2 .5060 22 115 .58 1 .4727 27 116 .55 22 .5472 4 117 .54 17 .5155 17 118 .53 19 .5308 7 119 .44 24 .5380 5 120 .42 7 .5136 18 121 .40 19 .5181 16 122 .38 17 .5244 11 123 .38 9 .5194 14 124 .36 13 .5002 23 125 .36 21 .5295 8 126 .32 15 .4742 26 127 .31 27 . .5769 1 77 TABLE V RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN EDI AND DEMOGRAPHIC VARIABLES IN 27 BRITISH COLUMBIA SCHOOL DISTRICTS STUDIED RELATIONSHIP PEARSON r LEVEL OF CONFIDENCE (2 - t a i l e d test) EDI: Population EDI: Heterogeneity Population: Heterogeneity - .2906 - .0172 .656 .07 0 .001 C o n f l i c t Measurement As was suggested in Chapter Three (Page 38), indir e c t measures of c o n f l i c t have possible drawbacks. The present study used a direct measure of board-public c o n f l i c t in the form of a questionnaire directed at school board members and d i s t r i c t administrators asking them to i d e n t i f y c o n f l i c t s between the board and the public. There are several ways of structuring such a ques-tionnaire, depending on the information required. The present study was interested primarily in the amount of con-f l i c t , which may be broken down into two components: the number of incidents and the intensity of each incident. The questionnaire therefore contained methods for measuring each of these components. The measurement of the number of i n c i -dents might have been done in several ways, each presenting advantages and disadvantages. 78 (a) Respondent-generated l i s t . The respondent generates instances and l i s t s them, relying on memory to provide the items. The disadvantage i s that respondents have to r e l y soley on their memories for the l i s t of incidents. (b) Researcher-generated l i s t . The researcher provides a l i s t of possible instances and respondents specify which possible instances actually occurred. The advantage to t h i s procedure i s that respondents do not have to rely on memory to the extent necessary i f they have to gener-ate their own l i s t . The disadvantage i s that there may be more than one incident possible under a single heading, and simply checking off a l i s t does not specify which incident i s being referred to. For instance, i f the d i s t r i c t closed three schools and c o n f l i c t developed over two of them, how would a respondent reply to an item reading 'School closing'? The disadvantages can be reduced by combining the two alternatives; providing a questionnaire consisting of possi-ble conflict-producing incidents, each followed by several spaces so respondents can provide a brief description of actual incidents. In this way, respondents' memories can be jogged, but there i s f l e x i b i l i t y to allow for several i n c i -r dents of a similar nature to be s p e c i f i e d . Since i t was not possible to anticipate every possible incident that might produce c o n f l i c t , space was provided for 'other' incidents to be l i s t e d by the respondents. 79 The possible incidents were provided by inspection of board minutes. Items that arose frequently at board meetings throughout the province were selected for inclusion in the questionnaire. The questionnaire that resulted from this procedure i s found in Appendix A. Appendix B contains cover l e t t e r s to trustees and d i s t r i c t administrators. Included beside each item on the questionnaire was a scale for the respondent's estimation of the intensity of the c o n f l i c t , ranging from 'None' to ' A l l ' , denoting the amount of the board's time and attention the incident occupied, a technique suggested by Froese (1972). Superintendents were contacted i n the twenty-seven d i s t r i c t s and asked to a s s i s t in the d i s t r i b u t i o n and c o l l e c -tion of questionnaires. Two superintendents, who would not be in their d i s t r i c t s at the time the survey was to be carried out, asked i f the questionnaires could be sent to them immediately. These two d i s t r i c t s were treated as t r i a l runs for the questionnaire. The responses were used to determine i f any changes in the format were needed. The instrument was piloted by being administered to two members of two boards and they were able to complete the question-naire with almost complete agreement as to incidents and inte n s i t y given no s p e c i f i c instructions other than those included with the questionnaire. The questionnaires were sent to the d i s t r i c t s during the second week in November, 1979, so they could be completed shortly after November 15, the f i n a l date for submission of 80 the preliminary budget to the Ministry. It was important that the questionnaire be completed by trustees who held o f f i c e during 1979, and i t was simpler to have this done i f the questionnaires were completed before the end of the year, while trustees who were leaving o f f i c e were s t i l l on the board. In order to assure a high rate of return, superinten-dents were^ asked to send the questionnaires to the board members so they could complete the questionnaires and return them to the superintendent who then sent them on. In case some or a l l of the board members were unable or unwilling to take part in such an exercise, self-addressed stamped enve-lopes were supplied so the questionnaires could be completed and returned i n d i v i d u a l l y . In January, those d i s t r i c t s that had not responded to the questionnaire were contacted. In several cases, board o f f i c e s were holding the returns u n t i l a l l were received. In other cases, a follow-up l e t t e r (Appendix B) was sent. By mid-February, with twenty-three d i s t r i c t s complete, i t was f e l t that there was l i t t l e l i k e l i h o o d of further returns, and data analysis was commenced. The tabu-l a t i o n of questionnaire returns i s discussed in Appendix D. Amount of c o n f l i c t . After selecting four returns at random from a given board, those four were inspected and any i n c i -dent i d e n t i f i e d by two or more respondents was noted on a t a l l y sheet, with a brief description of the incident. 81 Intensity of c o n f l i c t . Intensity was measured by means of a gauge marked off in eighty segments of .05 cm each. This gauge was held against the "Intensity" marker next to each incident on the questionnaire (see Appendix A) and the number on the gauge noted. Each incident included on the t a l l y sheet received an intensity rating between 1 and 80 ( i n increments of 1), the d i s t r i c t rating being an average of a l l ratings received for that incident. Subject of c o n f l i c t s . The subject of c o n f l i c t s was i d e n t i -f i e d by the subject of the incidents as recorded by the respondents. Because there were over twenty types of i n c i -dents tabulated, they were collapsed into four categories for purposes of analysis: Physical Plant (use of f a c i l i t i e s , s i t e s and playground development, maintenance); Staff (teaching and non-teaching); Pupils (busing, crosswalks, hours of operation^ boundaries, et c . ) ; and Instruction (curriculum, report cards, materials and texts, grade organization, French Immersion, et c . ) . These categories were selected on the basis of inher-ent s i m i l a r i t y rather than following data inspection (that i s , on an a p r i o r i rather than a post-hoc basis). Some of the c e l l s are considerably larger than others for that reason. Findings from the questionnaire are reported i n Chapter Five. 82 This section has described the methods of data c o l -l e c t i o n , including data regarding EDI, community demographic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , and c o n f l i c t . The method used to prepare the data for analysis has also been described. The following section describes the analysis of data. ANALYSIS OF DATA This section describes the techniques used to analyze the data. The f i r s t part of the section deals with the types of data c o l l e c t e d . The next five parts describe the major aspects of data analysis, including relationships between: EDI and d i s t r i c t variables; amount of c o n f l i c t and other var-iables; subject of c o n f l i c t and other variables; i n t e n s i t y of c o n f l i c t and other variables; EDI, heterogeneity, and amount of c o n f l i c t ; and EDI, d i s t r i c t size and amount of c o n f l i c t . Table VI shows the three levels of data collected, and the method of an analysis used for combinations of variables examined. 7 Data collected included i n t e r v a l , o r d i n a l -i n t e r v a l , and nominal. In spite of the fact that various authorities suggest that o r d i n a l - i n t e r v a l or quasi-interval data can be treated parametrically, i t was decided to treat t h i s type non-parametrically, in order to lessen the chances of a Type 1 error. 7 T e c h n i c a l l y , four levels were collected, since EDI, Board Size, number of board meetings, community size and the Index of Heterogeneity are a l l r a t i o data. However, for the purposes of analysis, they are treated as interval data, and are so termed. 83 TABLE VI STATISTICAL TESTS FOR PROBLEMS AND SUB-PROBLEMS RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN DATA TYPE ANALYSIS TECHNIQUE 1 EDI and: 1. D i s t r i c t Size 2. D i s t r i c t Asessment 3. Board Size 4. D i s t r i c t Heterogeneity 5. Superintendent Appointment 6. D i s t r i c t Location Interval II II II II II Pearson r II II II t-test Kruskal-Wallis 2 Amount of Co n f l i c t and: 1. EDI 2. D i s t r i c t Size 3. D i s t r i c t Assessment 4. D i s t r i c t Heterogeneity 5. D i s t r i c t Location 6. Subject of Co n f l i c t 7. Intensity of C o n f l i c t Interval II II Nominal II Ordinal Pearson r II II II Kruskal-Wallis II Spearman rank-order 3 Subject of Co n f l i c t and: 1. EDI 2. D i s t r i c t Size 3. D i s t r i c t Assessment 4. D i s t r i c t Heterogeneity 5. D i s t r i c t Location 6. Intensity of C o n f l i c t Interval II II II II i t Pearson r II II Kruskal-Wallis Spearman rank-order 4 Intensity of Co n f l i c t and 1. EDI 2. D i s t r i c t Size 3. D i s t r i c t Assessment 4. D i s t r i c t Heterogeneity 5. D i s t r i c t Location Ordinal II II i t Nominal Spearman rank-order II II II Kruskal-Wallis 5 1. EDI, D i s t r i c t Hetero-geneity, Amount of Co n f l i c t 2. EDI, D i s t r i c t Size, Amount of C o n f l i c t Interval Interval Dependence Analysis and Two-factor ANOVA 84 EDI Relationships The analyses l i s t e d in section 1 of Table VI (Pg. 83) are designed to ascertain i f there i s any relationship between EDI and the variables l i s t e d . Although the reason for variation in EDI was not a central concern of the study, the data collected made i t easy to see i f relationships existed. Relationships 1.1 to 1.4 incl u s i v e dealt with data that are suited to analysis by means of a product-moment correlation, since they meet the common requirements of homoscedasticity and normal d i s t r i b u t i o n (Popham and Sirotnik, 1973). The product-moment procedure attempts to determine i f two v a r i -ables are related, and to what degree. For relationships 1.1 to 1.4~ the n u l l hypothesis (that there i s no relationship between EDI and any of the other variables) was rejected i f the product-moment correlation were s i g n i f i c a n t at less than 0.1. For these four relationships the probability of making a Type 1 error, or of mistakenly rejecting the n u l l hypothe-s i s , i s 0.1. Selection of this level of significance was based on the exploratory nature of the study and on the fact that the product-moment procedure i s a conservative test of rel a t i o n s h i p s . Relationship 1.5 examined the relationship between EDI and the method of superintendent appointment prevalent i n the d i s t r i c t s in the sample. Up to the time when the board minutes on which the EDI i s based were taken, there were two 85 possible methods of superintendent appointments in B r i t i s h Columbia. D i s t r i c t s with more than 20,000 pupils could appoint their own l o c a l l y employed superintendent i f they wished. D i s t r i c t s with fewer than 20,000 pupils had a superintendent who was selected from a l i s t of p r o v i n c i a l l y employed superintendents, or their superintendent was appoin-ted by the Ministry of Education. Since six of the seven d i s t r i c t s with l o c a l l y employed superintendents were included i n the sample, i t was possible to see i f any relationship existed between EDI and l o c a l employment. This relationship was examined using a t-test procedure, which attempts to es t a b l i s h whether differences in means are due to chance or whether the groups represent d i f f e r e n t populations. The n u l l hypothesis was stated as: H Q: There i s no s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t difference between the sample populations represented by the presence or absence of a l o c a l l y appointed superintendent. The n u l l hypothesis was rejected when the observed value of the t-test was such that the probability of i t s occurance under H Q was less than 0.1. The probability of making a Type 1 error i s 0.1. This level of significance i s based on the exploratory nature of the study and on the fact that the t-test i s a conservative test which i s sensitive to any systematic variation in populations. Relationship 1.6 examined the relationships between EDI and d i s t r i c t location. The province was a r b i t r a r i l y divided into 86 f i v e areas (Vancouver Island, Metro, Central, East and North) and analysis was carried out using a Kruskal-Wallis one-way analysis of variance (H). Again, the n u l l hypothesis, H Q: There i s no s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t difference among the sample populations from d i f f e r e n t areas of B r i t i s h Columbia, was rejected when the observed value of H was s i g n i f i c a n t at the 0.1 l e v e l , for reasons similar to those advanced for relationships 1.1 through 1.5. Amount-of-Conflict Relationships Section 2 of Table VI shows the s t a t i s t i c a l methods used to examine relationships between the amount of c o n f l i c t for each d i s t r i c t and other variables as l i s t e d . The amount  of c o n f l i c t for any given d i s t r i c t i s the number of incidents tabulated for that d i s t r i c t as explained in the section of t h i s chapter on C o n f l i c t Measurement, under the sub-heading Amount of C o n f l i c t (Pg 80). Relationships 2.1 through 2.4 were analyzed using a product-moment corr e l a t i o n , for the same reasons outlined above i n the sub-section on EDI Relationships. Level of significance was set at the 0.1 l e v e l , again for the reasons advanced e a r l i e r . Relationship 2.5 was analyzed using a Kruskal-Wallis proce-dure for reasons similar to those advanced for Relationship 1.1. Level of significance was set at the 0.1 l e v e l . 87 Relationship 2.6 examined the relationship between the amount and subject of c o n f l i c t . The subject of c o n f l i c t was treated as nominal data, a l l incidents being placed in one of four categories: physical plant, s t a f f , pupils, and instruction, as described on Page 81. The t o t a l number of incidents for a l l boards in each category were t o t a l l e d and analyzed using a Kruskal-Wallis one-way analysis of variance. Level of significance was set at the 0.1 l e v e l . Relationship 2.7 examined the relationship between amount and i n t e n s i t y of c o n f l i c t . The amount of c o n f l i c t (number of incidents) for each d i s t r i c t was t o t a l l e d and ranked. The average intensity for each d i s t r i c t was obtained by adding together intensity ratings for a l l incidents tabulated and dividing by the number of incidents. These average i n t e n s i -t i e s were ranked, and a Spearman rank-order correlation coef-f i c i e n t ( r s ) was computed. The Spearman c o e f f i c i e n t was chosen because i t was f e l t that the procedure for measuring intensity of c o n f l i c t provided ordinal rather than i n t e r v a l data," and the Spearman procedure demands fewer assumptions regarding the nature of the data used than does the Pearson procedure. Level of significance necessary for rejection of the n u l l hypothesis, H Q: There i s no s i g n i f i c a n t r e l a t i o n s h i p between amount and intensity of c o n f l i c t , was set at the 0.1 l e v e l of confidence. 88 Subject-of-Conflict Relationships The analyses set forth in section 3 of Table VI are designed to examine relationships between the subject of c o n f l i c t and other varibles. The method of categorizing the subject of c o n f l i c t was discussed on Page 81 under the heading Subject of c o n f l i c t s , as was the nature of the data thus obtained. Given the fact that subjects of c o n f l i c t were tested against i n t e r v a l measures, most s t a t i s t i c a l proce-dures used in section 3 were parametric in nature. Relationship 3.1 through 3.4 examined the relationships between subject of c o n f l i c t and board operating procedure (EDI) and between subject of c o n f l i c t and various demographic c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the communities studied. A Pearson r product-moment was used for each of the pairs. The level of s i g n i f i c a n c e needed to reject the n u l l hypothesis, H Q: There i s no relationship between the subject of c o n f l i c t and EDI, or between the subject of c o n f l i c t and selected demographic variables, was set at the 0.1 l e v e l of s i g n i f i c a n c e . Relationship 3.5 examined the relationship between the subject of c o n f l i c t and d i s t r i c t locations. Since location i s measured nominally, a Kruskal-Wallis procedure was selected. The number of incidents reported by d i s t r i c t s in any given geographic area appeared in the c e l l under the "Subject of C o n f l i c t " category into which the incidents f e l l . 89 The l e v e l of significance needed to reject the n u l l hypothesis, H Q: There i s no s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t difference among the populations represented by the subject of c o n f l i c t cate-gories of the variables and geographical location, was set at the 0.1 l e v e l of si g n i f i c a n c e . Relationship 3.6 examined the relationship between subject and intensity of c o n f l i c t . Since the data was interval for one variable and ordinal for the other, a Spearman rank-order procedure was chosen to examine this relationship. The level of significance needed to reject the n u l l hypothesis, H Q: There i s no s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationship between subject and intensity of c o n f l i c t , was set at the 0.1 l e v e l of signi f i c a n c e . Intensity-of-Conflict Relationships The analytic procedures set forth in section 4 of Table VI are designed to examine relationships between the int e n s i t y of c o n f l i c t experienced by various d i s t r i c t s and variables of board procedure (EDI), community demography and d i s t r i c t location. Relationships 4.1 through 4.4. Because the data for inten-s i t y of c o n f l i c t i s ordinal and that for the other variables i s i n t e r v a l , Spearman's rank-order correlation c o e f f i c i e n t (rho) was used. The level of significance needed to reject the n u l l hypothesis, 90 H Q: There i s no s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationship between intensity of c o n f l i c t and EDI, or between intensity of c o n f l i c t and selected demographic variables, was set at the 0.1 l e v e l of signi f i c a n c e . Relationship 4.5 examined the relationship between two nomi-nal variables, and a chi-square procedure was used. The le v e l of significance needed to reject the n u l l hypothesis, H Q: There i s no s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t difference among the populations represented by the intensity of c o n f l i c t and geographical location categories of the variables, was set at the 0.1 l e v e l of sig n i f i c a n c e . Dependent Relationships Section 5 of Table VI indicates those variables that were selected for interaction or dependence analysis. Chapter Three explained the conceptualization of the way in which the variables of EDI, Heterogeneity or D i s t r i c t Size, and C o n f l i c t might be related. Relationships 5.1 and 5.2 examined the relationships among these variables. Under most circumstances, correlations among several variables involve either multiple correlation, p a r t i a l c o r r e l a t i o n , or multiple regression. However, a l l these techniques rely on a d d i t i v i t y of effe c t s ; that i s , there must be a correlation between pairs of variables before the formulae w i l l produce a meaningful result among three (or 91 more) variables. The conceptualization of the present prob-lem, however, posited that the amount of c o n f l i c t experienced between a school board and i t s public might depend on a p a r t i c u l a r combination of circumstances involving board operating procedure and community demography. In these circumstances, there might be no correlation between any two variables, but there might be a correlation among a l l three. Boudon (1968) comments about such cases. In such a case, we s h a l l speak interchangeably of nonadditivity of e f f e c t s , of interaction or, following Lazarsfeld, of s p e c i f i c a t i o n . The linear equations (used for c o r r e l a t i o n a l analysis) cannot possibly translate a phenomenon of t h i s kind (1968:221). Boudon proposed an adaptation of the Pearson r formula: r-ij = ?(Xj - XV) (X-j - X-j) J *(X± - Xi)2$(Xj - Xj)2 as follows: r i J k = {(Xj - Xi) (Xj - X-j) (X k - X k) ^ * ( X i - X i ) 2 *(Xj - Xj)2 * ( X k - X k)2 where X i , Xj , and X k are the three variables under con-sideration . This formula was used to examine Relationships 5.1 and 5.2. Because th i s approach has not received widespread acceptance (no reference to i t could be found in the Social Sciences Ci t a t i o n Index), further analysis of these r e l a t i o n -ships was carried out by means of a Two-Factor Fixed-Effects 92 Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) with Unequal C e l l Sizes as described by Glass and Stanley (1970). It seemed unwise to re l y soley on ANOVA procedure because of the small c e l l sizes and the effect those sizes might have on robustness of the technique. Glass and Stanley (1970) point out, however, that the most widely accepted method of dealing with unequal n's i s to reduce each c e l l to i t s mean, and consider the problem as an ANOVA with n = 1 observation per c e l l . Providing the formulae pioneered by Scheffe (1959) are followed, the F-tests operate as they would i f a l l variances were equal and equalled the average of the i j c e l l variances (Scheffe, 1959, Chapter 10). Further, Glass and Stanley state that: In summary, the fixed e f fects ANOVA appears to be remarkably insensitive to departures from normality ' (1970:374). In l i g h t of those comments, i t seemed reasonable to use an ANOVA technique at least as a check on a somewhat untried method of analysis. In the examination of these relationships the n u l l hypothesis, H Q: There i s no s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationship among EDI, demography, and c o n f l i c t , was rejected when the observed value of Y±jk> or of F, was s i g n i f i c a n t at the 0.1 l e v e l of sig n i f i c a n c e . Contributions to Significance Both Kruskal-Wallis and ANOVA tests indicate the 93 l e v e l of s t a t i s t i c a l significance of variation in popula-tions, either from expected frequencies (Kruskal-Wallis) or from other poplations (ANOVA). , They do not enable the researcher to i d e n t i f y the source of s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f -icant v a r i a t i o n . Where a s i g n i f i c a n t chi-square value was obtained i n a Kruskal-Wallis test, the chi-square test of quasi-independence (Brown, 1977) was used to carry out a step-wise elimination of c e l l s in the contingency table. That c e l l contributing most to the significance was eliminated f i r s t , followed by other c e l l s in descending order. In the case of the ANOVA, the Duncan method of multiple comparison (Kirk, 1968) was used. The study generated a considerable amount of data. Since the study was exploratory i n nature, the relationship between any two pieces of data might have been examined. In order to cut down the number of analyses, however, only those relationships i d e n t i f i e d in the conceputal framework as being of interest were examined. Even so, a large number of tables were generated. These tables are shown in the following chapter. Chapter 5 FINDINGS OF THE STUDY INTRODUCTION The chapter i s divided into f i v e sections, each dealing with one section of the a n a l y t i c a l scheme outlined in the Analysis of Data section of the previous chapter. In each case, the problem i s stated, the findings are presented i n tabular form together with s t a t i s t i c a l significance, and the findings are discussed. Before considering any of the analyses, some points about correlations between the independent variables concer-ning d i s t r i c t demography should be noted. As has been noted, some authorities have viewed wealth as a c r i t i c a l factor in board-public c o n f l i c t ( C a h i l l and Hencley, 1964; Minar, 1966a). The correlation between d i s t r i c t size and property assessment i s 0.9918. While i t i s obvious that large dis-t r i c t s have greater assessment bases than small d i s t r i c t s , i t was not anticipated that the correlation would be as great as i t i s . S i m i l a r l y , the correlation between d i s t r i c t size and heterogeneity i s 0.6568, s i g n i f i c a n t at the 0.001 l e v e l of s i g n i f i c a n c e . When examining correlations between any of these three variables and any other variables, i t may be expected 94 95 that a s i g n i f i c a n t finding between one pair w i l l be reflected by a s i g n i f i c a n t finding between the other pairs. Examin-ation of the magnitude of the correlation w i l l help indicate which variable i s most s i g n i f i c a n t . PROBLEM 1: EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX Problem: Are there s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationships between EDI and variables such as d i s t r i c t size, property assessment, board size, heterogeneity, superintendent appointment, and d i s t r i c t location that might help explain the operating procedures (as measured by EDI) adopted by boards? Findings Table VII indicates that the only s i g n i f i c a n t r e l a -tionships are between EDI and d i s t r i c t size and between EDI and d i s t r i c t assessment. As suggested above, the correlation between size and assessment i s very high, TABLE VII RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN EDI AND SELECTED VARIABLES RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN EDI and: TEST RESULT SIGNIF-ICANCE D i s t r i c t Size Pearson r - .2906 .07* Assessment Pearson r - .2679 .09* Board Size Pearson r - .2265 .13 Heterogeneity Pearson r - .0172 .47 Superintendent Appointment t-te s t .02 .844 D i s t r i c t Location Kruskal- 7.004 .136 Wallis •Indicates rejec t i o n of the n u l l hypothesis at the . 1 l e v e l . 96 so the fact that both, rather than only one, correlate highly with EDI i s not surprising. The most interesting finding in Table VII i s that while large d i s t r i c t s have a lower EDI than do small d i s t r i c t s , there i s no such relationship between EDI and heterogeneity despite the fact that there i s a highly s i g n i f i c a n t correlation between d i s t r i c t size and heteroge-neity . Discussion The l i t e r a t u r e review revealed several points of view concerning operating procedures or governing styles of school boards. Each of these viewpoints w i l l be considered below under appropriate headings. Boards as e l i t i s t or populist. Various writers ( C a h i l l and Hencley, 1964; Kimbrough, 1964; Callahan, 1962) have sugges-ted that boards are generally e l i t i s t ; that i s , operated by a small group of policy-makers in a closed fashion. The present study did not bear out this opinion. School boards may have been uniformly e l i t i s t in nature at one time, but the sixty-seven B r i t i s h Columbia school boards whose opera-ting procedures were examined for this study ranged from e l i t e or closed (LED) to extremely open and populist (HED) as described on Page 64. When more than two-thirds of the demands appearing at a board table are generated by the 97 public and are specified as such, as i s the case in twenty-four of the sixty-seven boards surveyed, the board can hardly be considered as e l i t e or closed. Relationship between operating procedures and d i s t r i c t . Some writers (Zeigler and Jennings, 1974; Boyd, 1976b; Brayne, 1979) have suggested that boards in large, heterogeneous com-munities are more l i k e l y to be e l i t e , closed or trustee (Zeigler and Jennings, 1974) boards. The findings of the present study support this contention, in part. Findings indicate that there i s a s i g n i f i c a n t negative relationship between d i s t r i c t size and EDI (large d i s t r i c t s have low EDIs) but no rel a t i o n s h i p between heterogeneity and EDI, even though there i s a very strong relationship between d i s t r i c t s i z e and heterogeneity. There i s no suggestion made here that a l l boards develop t h e i r operating s t y l e consciously, although some (esp e c i a l l y boards that go against the trend by having an HED s t y l e in a large d i s t r i c t ) may do so. Rather, i t seems l i k e l y that an LED procedure i s simpler to operate in a large d i s t r i c t , while there may be public expectation for an HED s t y l e in some small d i s t r i c t s . Given the lack of r e l a t i o n -ship between EDI and d i s t r i c t heterogeneity, i t seems l i k e l y that there i s l i t t l e pressure for any p a r t i c u l a r operating procedure according to heterogeneity. As to the question of whether school boards in a democratic society 'should' be closed or open, e l i t i s t or 98 populist, trustee or delegate, LED or HED, this study offers no answer. It was not part of the study to answer normative questions concerning operating procedure, and no such attempt was made. The study did attempt to ascertain i f there are cer-ta i n relationships involving c o n f l i c t and operating proce-dures and these findings w i l l be considered l a t e r . PROBLEM 2: AMOUNT OF CONFLICT Problem: Are there s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationships between the amount of c o n f l i c t experienced by a d i s t r i c t and variables such as EDI, d i s t r i c t size, assessment, heterogeneity, intensity of conflict,, subject of c o n f l i c t , and d i s t r i c t location? Findings Table VIII indicates that large d i s t r i c t s can expect more c o n f l i c t than can small d i s t r i c t s . Unlike the r e l a t i o n -ships between EDI and size and EDI and assessment, where the relat i o n s h i p between EDI and assessment was less than between EDI and d i s t r i c t size, the relationship between amount of c o n f l i c t and assessment i s s l i g h t l y stronger than the r e l a -tionship between amount of c o n f l i c t and d i s t r i c t s i z e . Lack of wealth may contribute more to amount of c o n f l i c t than does si z e , although the increase in strength i s minimal. The most s i g n i f i c a n t finding shown in Table VIII i s the strength of the relationship between amount of c o n f l i c t 99 and d i s t r i c t heterogeneity, a much stronger relationship than between amount of c o n f l i c t and d i s t r i c t s i z e . The only one of the s p e c i f i c variables of heterogen-e i t y that was s i g n i f i c a n t l y related to amount of c o n f l i c t was education. TABLE VIII RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN AMOUNT OF CONFLICT AND SELECTED VARIABLES RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN SIGNIF-AMOUNT OF CONFLICT &: TEST RESULT ICANCE EDI Pearson r - .2026 . .15 D i s t r i c t Size Pearson r .3082 .06* Assessment Pearson r .3293 .05* Heterogeneity: - Total Pearson r .3890 .02* - Mother Tongue Pearson r .2380 .11 - Education Pearson r .309 .06* - Income Pearson r .106 .29 - Occupation Pearson r - .197 .16 - Age Pearson r .238 .11 Intensity of Con f l i c t Spearman rho .1702 .20 Subject of Co n f l i c t Kruskal-Wallis 4.005 .256 Location Kruskal-Wallis 7.438 .11 •Indicates rejec t i o n of the n u l l hypothesis at the .1 l e v e l . Discussion Findings here bear out suggestions by some writers (Zeigler and Jennings, 1974; Lutz and Iannaccone, 1978) that large d i s t r i c t s w i l l experience greater c o n f l i c t than w i l l small d i s t r i c t s . This seems to make i n t u i t i v e sense. There w i l l be more occasions for c o n f l i c t in a large school system than in a small, as there are more interactions, and every in t e r a c t i o n i s a possible source of c o n f l i c t . The data also 100 bear out the notion that heterogeneity i s associated with c o n f l i c t , and i t i s important to note that heterogeneity bears a stronger relationship to amount of c o n f l i c t than does d i s t r i c t s i z e . As d i s t r i c t s become more heterogeneous, they experience greater amounts of c o n f l i c t . Again, this agrees with writers (Buckley, 1967; Laslett, 1967; Poplin, 1972) who have suggested that highly heterogeneous communities are more l i k e l y to experience c o n f l i c t (of various kinds) than are communities of less heterogeneous natures. The l i t e r a t u r e of educational governance does not suggest that heterogeneity i s a better predictor of amount of c o n f l i c t than size, but the results of the present study seem to suggest that conclusion. It i s interesting to note that EDI by i t s e l f cannot be used as a predictor of amount of c o n f l i c t . There i s a s l i g h t relationship, but i t i s not s i g n i f i c a n t . Those writers (Zeigler and Jennings, 1974; Tyack, 1972) who have suggested that closed, e l i t e , or trustee boards w i l l have more c o n f l i c t than open, populist or delegate boards are not supported by this study. EDI by i t s e l f was not a good pre-d i c t o r of c o n f l i c t . It i s also interesting that education i s the only s p e c i f i c demographic variable to indicate a s i g n i f i c a n t r e l a -tionship with amount of c o n f l i c t . Nowhere in the l i t e r a t u r e i s this predicted. It i s possible that people of varying educational backgrounds have markedly di f f e r e n t views as to 101 how their children should be educated, and these differences lead to c o n f l i c t . Why education i s a better predictor than" say, income, i s not at a l l apparent, and might be a subject of further study. PROBLEM 3: SUBJECT OF CONFLICT Problem: Are there s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationships between the subject of c o n f l i c t and variables such as EDI," d i s t r i c t size, property assessment, hetero-geneity, intensity of c o n f l i c t , amount of c o n f l i c t and d i s t r i c t location? The l i t e r a t u r e studied was almost s i l e n t concerning s p e c i f i c subjects that lead to c o n f l i c t . Apart from charac-t e r i z i n g c o n f l i c t u a l subjects as 'episodic' and 'highly v i s i b l e ' (Martin, 1962), most writers do not discuss s p e c i f i c r e lationships between c o n f l i c t and other variables. The present study was not concerned primarily with s p e c i f i c r e l a -tionships involving c o n f l i c t , but certain relationships were uncovered. As was outlined in Chapter Four (Page 78), the four categories delineated and discussed in this section of Chapter Five were set on the basis of responses to the questionnaire before returns were tabulated. Actual numbers of incidents in each category can be found i n Appendix E. The four subjects covered are those i d e n t i f i e d on Page 81: physical plant, pupils, s t a f f , and i n s t r u c t i o n . The wide range of subjects that triggered c o n f l i c t i s i n t e r e s t i n g . Appendix E gives a complete breakdown of 102 s p e c i f i c subjects, but some brief comments are in order here. Incidents r e l a t i n g to pupil well-being (busing, crosswalks, school closure, school boundaries, pupil behaviour, dismissal times) accounted for f o r t y - f i v e percent of the tot a l con-f l i c t s , and these c o n f l i c t s were apt to be intense. French Immersion or exposure programs generated f i f t e e n incidents out of the two hundred and one incidents reported. Other i n s t r u c t i o n a l matters did not result in c o n f l i c t to any great extent. Teacher incompetence, special education, and pupil behaviour resulted i n few c o n f l i c t s , but they were apt to be intense. School closures resulted in sixteen c o n f l i c t s . S p e c i f i c incidents ranged from the tragic ("Pupil k i l l e d at graduation while under the influence of alcohol") to the comic ("Mice ate pupils' lunches - we promised more vigilance on the trap l i n e " ) , from the commonplace (school closures, school boundaries) to the bizarre (town council member slurs trustee, viewing eclipse of sun). The range of incidents can be shown by the fact that there were forty-two s p e c i f i c categories of incidents reported. C o n f l i c t Concerning Physical Plant Findings. Table IX(a) indicates that the only s i g n i f i c a n t r e l a t i o n s h i p i s between c o n f l i c t over matters concerning physical plant and heterogeneity. Therefore, i t may be con-cluded that d i s t r i c t heterogeneity, especially heterogeneity of education or occupation, i s the only predictor of c o n f l i c t among the variables examined. 103 Analysis of the effect of various elements of hetero-geneity indicated a s i g n i f i c a n t relationship between c o n f l i c t over physical plant and heterogeneity of education and a s i g -n i f i c a n t inverse relationship between c o n f l i c t over physical plant and heterogeneity of occupation. TABLE IX(a) RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN CONFLICTS CONCERNING PHYSICAL PLANT AND SELECTED VARIABLES RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN SIGNIF-CONFLICTS CONCERNING TEST RESULT ICANCE PHYSICAL PLANT &: EDI Pearson r .1924 .19 Size Pearson r .1355 .27 Assessment Pearson r .1211 .29 Heterogeneity: - Composite Pearson r .3132 .07* - Mother Tongue Pearson r .1431 .25 - Education Pearson r .3960 .03* - Income Pearson r .0538 .40 - Occupation Pearson r - .3707 .04* - Age Pearson r .1642 .20 Location Kruskal-Wallis 6.198 .185 Intensity Spearman rho - .1257 .284 •Indicates rejec t i o n of the n u l l hypot hesis at the .1 l e v e l The more d i s s i m i l a r the population of a d i s t r i c t i s with regard to amount of formal education, the greater the chance of c o n f l i c t over matters involving physical plant. However, the more d i s s i m i l a r the population with regard to occupation, the less the chance of c o n f l i c t involving physical plant. Discussion. The findings of a s i g n i f i c a n t relationship between heterogeneity of education and concerns over physical 104 plant and a s i g n i f i c a n t inverse relationship between hetero-geneity of occupation and concerns over physical plant are not easily explicable. There i s no very obvious reason why either of these relationships should occur. An examination of the factors that result in high heterogeneity of education and occupation suggests a very tentative explanation. The largest educational group among B r i t i s h Columbia residents i s high school graduates, and there are a limited number of people among those no longer in school with less than high school graduation. The greatest contributor of educational heterogeneity i s therefore advanced education. Since most c o n f l i c t s over physical plant involve use of f a c i l i t i e s for night school courses or community college use, i t i s possible that communities with a higher percentage of people with advanced education w i l l have more demand for this use of f a c i l i t i e s , and therefore more c o n f l i c t . The same reasoning may be applied to occupational d i v e r s i t y , but the effect i s exactly opposite. B r i t i s h Columbia i s thought of as having many people employed in extractive industries but because these industries are not labour intensive, the number of people employed i s r e l a t i v e l y small. According to census data, the largest labour group in B r i t i s h Columbia i s the white c o l l a r group. Hence', a d i s t r i c t that has a low hetero-geneity as regards occupation w i l l have a large number of white c o l l a r workers. Since these workers are the most l i k e l y users of night school courses, according to the 105 Ministry of Education (1978), i t can be argued that a high occupational heterogeneity means less demand for community use of schools, and therefore less c o n f l i c t . C o n f l i c t Concerning Pupils Findings. Table IX(b) indicates that an association exists for four variables: d i s t r i c t size, assessment, heterogen-e i t y , and i n t e n s i t y . Again, the f i r s t three may be seen as a result of the fact that c o n f l i c t over pupil well-being i s a part of total c o n f l i c t . The fact that a l l three correlations are close to error l i m i t s suggests that one should be hesitant about drawing conclusions regarding c o n f l i c t s about pupil well-being and demographic factors. However, i t i s worth noting that while heterogeneity plays a larger role in determining the amount of c o n f l i c t than does d i s t r i c t size, the reverse i s true with regard to c o n f l i c t about pupils. In other words, large d i s t r i c t s seem to exhibit more c o n f l i c t over pupils than do small d i s t r i c t s , and the trend i s stronger than the trend between more and less heterogeneous d i s t r i c t s . It i s interesting to note that the relationships between c o n f l i c t over pupils and c o n f l i c t intensity i s s i g n i f i c a n t , indicating that parents exhibit greater concern over pupil well-being than they do over other subjects that cause c o n f l i c t . 106 Analysis of the effect of various elements of hetero-geneity indicated a s i g n i f i c a n t c orrelation between c o n f l i c t over matters involving pupils and heterogeneity of mother tongue and education. The more diverse the residents of a d i s t r i c t are with regard to mother tongue or education, the more li k e l i h o o d there i s of c o n f l i c t concerning pupils. TABLE IX(b) RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN CONFLICTS CONCERNING PUPILS AND SELECTED VARIABLES RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN CONFLICTS CONCERNING PUPILS &: TEST RESULT SIGNIF-ICANCE EDI Pearson r - .0785 .36 Size Pearson r .3091 .08* Assessment Pearson r .2984 .08* Heterogeneity: - Total Pearson r .2725 .10* - Mother Tongue Pearson r .3635 .04* - Education Pearson r - .1213 .02* - Income Pearson r .1895 .19 - Occupation Pearson r - .0257 .45 - Age Pearson r .2462 .12 Location Kruskal-Wallis 1.625 .80 Intensity Spearman rho .3860 .034* •Indicates rejec t i o n of the n u l l hypot hesis at the .1 l e v e l . Discussion. Experience suggested that perhaps c o n f l i c t s r e s u l t i n g from concerns about students might be more numerous than other types of c o n f l i c t . This expectation was proven correct by the study. There were s i g n i f i c a n t l y greater c o n f l i c t s engendered by matters concerning pupils than by other subjects. In p a r t i c u l a r , c o n f l i c t s over busing were 107 found in rural areas, while problems r i s i n g from crosswalks and patrols were common in urban areas. Large d i s t r i c t s experienced more problems in the area of pupil welfare than did small d i s t r i c t s . The greater number of c o n f l i c t s concerning pupils i s a r e f l e c t i o n of the greater number of c o n f l i c t s generally. The s i g n i f i c a n t relationship between c o n f l i c t over pupils and heterogeneity of mother tongue appears s e l f -explanatory. School d i s t r i c t s with a high heterogeneity of mother tongue are apt to have a large number of students who experience language d i f f i c u l t i e s . The need for special assistance and special programs for these pupils may well lead to c o n f l i c t , as they compete for education dollars with other programs. Si m i l a r l y , the relationship between c o n f l i c t concer-ning pupils and educational d i v e r s i t y seems straight-forward. Parents of d i f f e r i n g educational backgrounds w i l l have d i f -ferent expectations of the school system. These varying expectations may well lead to c o n f l i c t between the board and the public, as the board's actions alienate one segment of the public or another. C o n f l i c t Involving Staff Findings. Table IX(c) indicates no s i g n i f i c a n t relationships between c o n f l i c t s concerning s t a f f and any other variable. Presumably, s t a f f problems (or lack of them) are found equally among a l l types of d i s t r i c t s . 108 TABLE IX(c) RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN CONFLICTS CONCERNING STAFF AND SELECTED VARIABLES RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN CONFLICTS CONCERNING STAFF ft.• TEST RESULT SIGNIF-ICANCE EDI Pearson r .0929 .34 Size Pearson r .2206 .15 Assessment Pearson r .2083 .17 Heterogeneity: - Total Pearson r .1528 .24 - Mother Tongue Pearson r .0189 .46 - Education Pearson r .1578 .23 - Income Pearson r .1409 .26 - Occupation Pearson r - .1358 .26 - Age Pearson r .1684 .22 Location Kruskal-Wallis 2.049 .55 Intensity Spearman rho .0615 .39 Discussion. There are no s i g n i f i c a n t relationships between the number of c o n f l i c t s concerning s t a f f and other variables. No p a r t i c u l a r type of d i s t r i c t i s apt to have a greater number of c o n f l i c t s involving teachers than i s any other type of d i s t r i c t . One feasible explanation i s that matters i n v o l -ving s t a f f tend to be handled at an administrative level i f at a l l possible in a l l types of d i s t r i c t s . When a problem with a s t a f f member arises, the d i s t r i c t o f f i c i a l s w i l l try to resolve the d i f f i c u l t y without having public input. This leads to less c o n f l i c t between the board and the public than might occur with regard to other matters. The concern for handling s t a f f matters unobtrusively may stem partly from the fact that such matters deal with person's livelihoods, and 109 are of concern to teachers' associations and employees' unions. School boards that do not wish to generate adverse p u b l i c i t y may attempt to handle s t a f f matters d i s c r e t e l y . C o n f l i c t Involving Instruction Findings. Table IX(d) indicates that size of d i s t r i c t exhi-b i t s the strongest relationship to c o n f l i c t over instruction, followed by heterogeneity and location. This i s the only subject of c o n f l i c t item showing a s i g n i f i c a n t r e l a t i o n s h i p to location of d i s t r i c t , and inspection of the data reveals that d i s t r i c t s in the lower mainland and on Vancouver Island tend to experience greater c o n f l i c t over i n s t r u c t i o n a l matters than do other d i s t r i c t s . Analysis of the effect of various elements of hetero-geneity indicated s i g n i f i c a n t correlations between c o n f l i c t over matters involving i n s t r u c t i o n and heterogeneity of education and age, and a s i g n i f i c a n t inverse relationship with heterogeneity of occupation. The more diverse the residents are regarding education and age, the more c o n f l i c t over in s t r u c t i o n there i s l i k e l y to be, while the more diverse they are regarding occupation, the less c o n f l i c t over i n s t r u c t i o n there w i l l l i k e l y be. 110 TABLE IX(d) RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN CONFLICTS CONCERNING INSTRUCTION AND SELECTED VARIABLES RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN CONFLICTS CONCERNING INSTRUCTION &• TEST RESULT SIGNIF-ICANCE EDI Pearson r - .2469 .13 Size Pearson r .6172 .001* Assessment Pearson r .5926 .001* Heterogeneity: - Total Pearson r .4770 .01* - Mother Tongue Pearson r .1738 .21 - Education Pearson r .6215 .001* - Income Pearson r .1119 .30 - Occupation Pearson r - .6059 .001* - Age Pearson r .3921 .03* Location Kruskal-Wallis 12.539 .01* Intensity Spearman rho .1990 .18 •Indicates rejec t i o n of the n u l l hypothesis at the .1 l e v e l . Discussion. The relationship between the number of c o n f l i c t s concerning i n s t r u c t i o n a l matters and d i s t r i c t size seems to contribute much more to the relationship between total amount of c o n f l i c t and d i s t r i c t size than might be expected to occur by chance. Large d i s t r i c t s seem to experience considerably more c o n f l i c t related to ins t r u c t i o n a l matters than do small d i s t r i c t s . Whether this i s a result of greater sophistica-tion on the part of parents i n urban settings, or i s a r e f l e c t i o n of greater d i f f i c u l t y in dealing with a hetero-geneous student population, or i s the result of some other variable, i s d i f f i c u l t to say. There i s l i t t l e doubt, I l l however, that i n s t r u c t i o n a l matters seem to be more important i n large d i s t r i c t s than in small d i s t r i c t s . The s i g n i f i c a n t relationships between c o n f l i c t over i n s t r u c t i o n a l matters and heterogeneity of education can be explained in the same way as the similar relationships i n v o l -ving education and physical plant. High heterogeneity sug-gests a higher level of education, and greater concern over i n s t r u c t i o n a l matters. The s i g n i f i c a n t inverse relationship between heterogeneity of occupation and c o n f l i c t over i n s t r u c t i o n a l matters may be explained as was the similar r e l a t i o n s h i p between occupation and physical plant. Greater heterogeneity of occupation suggests fewer white c o l l a r workers, and perhaps less concern with i n s t r u c t i o n a l matters on the part of parents. The relationship between heterogeneity of age and concern over in s t r u c t i o n i s less easy to explain. Increased heterogeneity of age i s caused mostly by a larger percentage of older people, without school-aged children. It i s d i f f i -c u l t to explain why th i s would lead to an increase in con-f l i c t over i n s t r u c t i o n a l matters. The only explanation that occurred to the researcher i s that older people are unhappy with the present trends in curriculum, but that explanation seems rather far-fetched. This relationship might provide a subject for further research. 112 Summary The four categories of Subject of C o n f l i c t display interesting differences. In br i e f , concerns about physical plant occur more frequently in more heterogeneous d i s t r i c t s , but no other relationships are s i g n i f i c a n t . Concerns over pupil well-being arise more often in large d i s t r i c t s than in small. There are no patterns with regard to c o n f l i c t over s t a f f , while large d i s t r i c t s in the lower mainland or Van-couver Island are l i k e l y to have c o n f l i c t about in s t r u c t i o n a l matters. PROBLEM 4: INTENSITY OF CONFLICT Problem: Are there s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t relationships between the i n t e n s i t y of c o n f l i c t and variables such as EDI, d i s t r i c t size, property assessment, heterogeneity, amount of c o n f l i c t , subject of con-f l i c t , and d i s t r i c t location? Findings Table X indicates there were no s i g n i f i c a n t r e l a -tionships between intensity of c o n f l i c t and the selected variables, except for relationships between c o n f l i c t inten-s i t y and heterogeneity of age. The less heterogeneous the ages of the d i s t r i c t population, the more intense c o n f l i c t i s apt to be. 113 TABLE X RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN INTENSITY OF CONFLICT AND SELECTED VARIABLES RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN INTENSITY OF CONFLICT TEST RESULT SIGNIF-AND: • ICANCE EDI Spearman rho - .2334 .12 D i s t r i c t Size Spearman rho .0376 .426 Assessment Spearman rho .0086 .48 Heterogeneity: - Total Spearman rho .1682 .20 - Mother Tongue Spearman rho .1835 .18 - Education Spearman rho - .1009 .31 - Income Spearman rho .0489 .40 - Occupation Spearman rho .1169 .28 - Age Spearman rho - .3796 .02* Location Kruskal-Wallis 3.29 .51 •Indicates rejec t i o n of the n u l l hypothesis at the .1 l e v e l . Discussion Again, the l i t e r a t u r e does not deal to any great extent with the intensity of c o n f l i c t experienced by school boards, except to note that some issues are related to intense c o n f l i c t while others are not. No studies seem to have been carried out to determine which issues are related to intense c o n f l i c t . The present study included such a component, and did uncover some s i g n i f i c a n t relationships. C o n f l i c t s over matters concerning pupils, for instance, tended to be more intense than did other c o n f l i c t s , p a r t i c u l a r l y matters related to pupil safety, such as crosswalks or bus pick-up and drop-off locations. C o n f l i c t s a r i s i n g from matters 114 concerning staff were not more intense, except when the con-f l i c t arose from suspected teacher incompetence. 8 In these few cases (five out of two hundred and one, or 2.5%) the in t e n s i t y was two and one-half times as great as the average intensity for a l l c o n f l i c t s . This suggests that the public seldom becomes involved in issues of teacher competence (either because teachers are generally seen as competent or because problems are handled dis c r e t e l y by school boards), but when i t does, the issue i s l i k e l y to be contentious. The relationship between EDI and intensity of con-f l i c t i s very close to being s i g n i f i c a n t . This may be explained by the nature of LED and HED boards. LED boards (or closed, e l i t e boards) exhibit, according to various authorities (Eulau, 1972; Eulau and Prewitt, 1973; Wahlke and others, 1962), considerable interest in avoiding c o n f l i c t s . Members of these boards might therefore view a l l c o n f l i c t s as being more intense than would members of HED boards, who might be expected to accept c o n f l i c t more readily. Given the low level of significance of the relationship, however, that conclusion i s very tentative. The findings of a s i g n i f i c a n t inverse relationship between heterogeneity of ages and c o n f l i c t intensity can be explained by examining the implications of heterogeneity of 8Appendix E. 115 age. The largest age group in B r i t i s h Columbia school dis-t r i c t s i s aged 30 to 44 years. The less heterogeneous the population, the more people w i l l be in that age group. It i s people in that age group that are apt to have school-age children, and are apt to be most concerned about educational matters. Although there was no corresponding rela t i o n s h i p between heterogeneity of age and the amount of c o n f l i c t , i t i s possible that when c o n f l i c t does arise, the larger the proportion of the group of people with school-age children the more serious the c o n f l i c t becomes. PROBLEM 5: INTERACTIVE RELATIONSHIPS Problem 5.1: Are there s i g n i f i c a n t relationships among the variables of EDI, heterogeneity, and amount of c o n f l i c t ? Findings. The f i r s t test carried out, by the method sugges-ted by Boudon (1968), resulted in an extremely high corre-l a t i o n . As a check, a multiple correlation was computed (Popham and Sirotnik," 1973), resulting i n a much lower si g n i f i c a n c e , but s t i l l a rejection of the n u l l hypothesis. As a further check, as ANOVA was carried out. The Analysis of Variance indicated that there i s a s i g n i f i c a n t relationship between the degree of heterogeneity of a d i s t r i c t and the amount of c o n f l i c t experienced. There i s also a s i g n i f i c a n t interaction between EDI and heterogen-e i t y resulting i n the amount of c o n f l i c t experienced by a d i s t r i c t . 116 TABLE XI INTERACTIVE CORRELATIONS AMONG THE AMOUNT OF CONFLICT, EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX, AND DISTRICT HETEROGENEITY IN 23 BRITISH COLUMBIA SCHOOL DISTRICTS TEST RESULT SIGNIFICANCE Boudon's r Multiple R .71 .44 .001* .025* •Indicates rejection of the n u l l hypothesis at the .1 l e v e l . Although the levels of significance vary among the three tests,9 there i s no question that there i s a s i g n i f -icant interaction effect between the variables of EDI and heterogeneity, and that when taken in conjunction, these two variables go much further to 'explain' c o n f l i c t than when considered separately. ^The difference i n levels of significance between the three tests may be explained by the nature of the tests. Boudon's test weighs a l l variables equally, and makes use of a l l available data. Multiple correlations depend on additiv -i t y of effects rather than on interactions, and so ignore what may be a s i g n i f i c a n t effect of the variables. ANOVA compares the means of c e l l s in order to detect differences between c e l l s . While ANOVA i s a robust test, i t i s sensitive to c e l l sizes. The ANOVA design for the present study r e s u l -ted in one c e l l with only one case, thus reducing the s i g n i f -icance of the relationships uncovered. 117 TABLE XII ANALYSIS OF VARIANCE OF THE AMOUNT OF CONFLICT IN 23 BRITISH COLUMBIA SCHOOL DISTRICTS, CLASSIFIED BY EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX AND DISTRICT HETEROGENEITY SOURCE OF VARIATION SS df MS F SIGNIF-ICANCE External Demand Index 32.03 2 16.01 1.36 .28 Heterogeneity 184.03 2 92 .01 7.82 .004* EDI x Heterogeneity 136.16 4 34.04 2.89 .05* Explained 331.08 8 41.38 3.52 .013 TOTAL 542.66 22 20.87 •Indicates r e j e c t i o n of the n u l l hypothesis at the .1 l e v e l . The t o t a l pattern of findings indicates a very strong c o r r e l a t i o n among EDI, heterogeneity, and c o n f l i c t . The pos-s i b l e implications of this relationship w i l l be discussed i n the section of Chapter Six devoted to recommendations for further study. Contributions to si g n i f i c a n c e . Because analysis of the three variables indicated . s i g n i f i c a n t relationships, further analysis was carried out to ascertain which combinations of variables contributed most to the sign i f i c a n c e . A comparison of a l l possible pairs of the ANOVA c e l l s was carried out using Duncan's Multiple Range procedure. The results are shown in Figure 4, which compares every c e l l in the ANOVA model to every other c e l l . An asterisk indicates the c e l l s are s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t at the .1 l e v e l of confidence. 118 HETEROGENEITY Low Medium High E L o w C e l l No. Co n f l i c t 1 2.5 C e l l No. Co n f l i c t 2 6.0 C e l l No. 3 C o n f l i c t : 14.3 D M e d i u m C e l l No. C o n f l i c t : 9.5 C e l l No. C o n f l i c t : 3.3 C e l l No. C o n f l i c t : 11.0 H i g h C e l l No. C o n f l i c t : 4.0 C e l l No. C o n f l i c t : 7.0 C e l l No. 9 C o n f l i c t : 8.2 C E L L 1 5 7 2 8 N U 9 M B 4 E R 6 * * CELL NUMBER 8 9 6 FIGURE 4 CONTRIBUTION OF INTERACTION BETWEEN LEVELS OF EDI AND HETEROGENEITY TO BOARD-PUBLIC CONFLICT IN 23 BRITISH COLUMBIA SCHOOL DISTRICTS 119 Low heterogeneity. Boards with medium EDI have s i g n f i c a n t l y greater c o n f l i c t than boards with low or high EDI. Medium heterogeneity. EDI does not s i g n i f i c a n t l y effect c o n f l i c t . High heterogeneity. Boards with low EDI have s i g n i f i c a n t l y greater c o n f l i c t than boards with high EDI. The results for d i s t r i c t s with low heterogeneity must be interpreted with extreme caution, as lack of returns resulted in the c e l l representing low heterogeneity and high EDI having only one case. Although the ANOVA procedure used i s viable in such cases (although only i f the number of such c e l l s i s very limited) c e l l s with an N of one cannot be com-pared to other c e l l s with any degree of confidence. It i s quite possible that the one board in that c e l l i s not typi c a l of low heterogeneity - high EDI boards. Problem 5.2: Are there s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t r e l a t i o n -ships among EDI ] d i s t r i c t size and amount of c o n f l i c t ? The relationships between EDI, d i s t r i c t size and the amount of c o n f l i c t were also examined, in order to ascertain i f those variables would present as s i g n i f i c a n t a r e l a t i o n -ship as the combination of EDI, heterogeneity and c o n f l i c t . The results of the ANOVA appear in Table XIII. 120 TABLE XIII ANALYSIS OF VARIANCE OF THE AMOUNT OF CONFLICT IN 23 BRITISH COLUMBIA SCHOOL DISTRICTS, CLASSIFIED BY EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX AND DISTRICT SIZE SOURCE OF VARIATION . ss df MS F SIGNIF-ICANCE External Demand Index D i s t r i c t Size EDI x Size Explained TOTAL 10.88 91.55 136.80 239.25 542.66 2 2 4 8 26 5.44 45.77 34.20 29.90 20.87 .32 2.72 2.03 2.77 .73 .093* .13 .15 •Indicates r e j e c t i o n of the n u l l hypothesis at the .1 l e v e l . Findings A comparison between Tables XII and XIII shows that the relationship between EDI and heterogeneity explains the amount of c o n f l i c t much more successfully than that between EDI and s i z e . Furthermore, heterogeneity by i t s e l f i s a more s i g n i f i c a n t predictor of the amount of c o n f l i c t than i s dis-t r i c t s i z e . Discussion This section of Chapter Five deals with the primary thrust of the study, the attempt to explain why some school boards experience greater amounts of c o n f l i c t with their publics than do others. The l i t e r a t u r e i s divided on this point - some writers (Iannaccone and Lutz, 1970; Lutz, 1974; Blanchard and Klein, 1977; Witmer, 1978) have stated that the key variables r e l a t i n g to c o n f l i c t are school board style and 121 d i s t r i c t heterogeneity, and that the more heterogeneous the d i s t r i c t , the more necessary i t i s for the board to adopt an arena (open, delegate, HED) operating s t y l e . Other writers (Zeigler and Jennings, 1974; Snow, 1967; Tyack, 1972) feel that the key variables r e l a t i n g to c o n f l i c t are school board s t y l e and d i s t r i c t s i z e , and that large, urban d i s t r i c t s require a trustee (closed, e l i t e , LED) operating s t y l e . The present study confirmed the views of the writers who follow the theories of Lutz and Iannaccone. Findings indicate that heterogeneity i s a much better predictor of amount of c o n f l i c t than i s d i s t r i c t size, and that certain combinations of board operating procedure and d i s t r i c t heter-ogeneity seem to produce greater amounts of c o n f l i c t than do other combinations. Low heterogeneity. While c o r r e l a t i o n a l analysis indicates a close relationship between heterogeneity and operating proce-dure, and indicates that given low heterogeneity, LED pro-cedures w i l l r e s u l t in less c o n f l i c t , the ANOVA procedure indicates a less clear-cut relationship. It i s not altoge-ther clear that boards in d i s t r i c t s of lower heterogeneity w i l l s i g n i f i c a n t l y reduce c o n f l i c t by adopting LED procedures Adoption of such procedures, however, w i l l probably not res u l t in an increase in the amount of board-public c o n f l i c t . There i s agreement in the l i t e r a t u r e that LED proce-dures are more e f f i c i e n t than HED procedures. Boards that do not involve the public in the decision-making process w i l l 122 have fewer community meetings, fewer delegations, and requests can be handled with less debate at board meetings. Boards that agree with writers (Boyd, 1975; K i r s t , 1970; Walton, 1959) who say that the public i s best served by a government that does the job as unobtrusively as possible should take note of the finding that boards in d i s t r i c t s of low heterogeneity would seem to be able to maximize their e f f i c i e n c y without r i s k i n g greater c o n f l i c t by adopting LED operating procedures. Zeigler and Jennings (1974) agree that LED boards are more e f f i c i e n t , but say that such boards are undemocratic. Medium heterogeneity. The situation with regard to d i s t r i c t s of medium heterogeneity i s similar to that of d i s t r i c t s of low heterogeneity, discussed above. Correlational analysis indicates that the higher the heterogeneity the higher the EDI should be i n order to avoid c o n f l i c t . The ANOVA multiple c l a s s i f i c a t i o n analysis (MCA), however, i s less d e f i n i t e regarding such relationships. There i s no very clear pattern i n the MCA as to differences in amounts of c o n f l i c t between c e l l s under the Medium Heterogeneity heading. Presumably, therefore, d i s t r i c t s of medium heterogeneity might adopt a sim i l a r strategy suggested for d i s t r i c t s of low heterogeneity: e f f i c i e n c y may be increased with no concommi-tant increase in c o n f l i c t i f LED procedures are adopted. There i s a caveat that must be noted, however, and that i s that the d i v i s i o n of d i s t r i c t s into low, medium and 123 high heterogeneity occurs at arbitrary cutting points. The difference between the most heterogeneous of the 'low' group and the least heterogeneous of the 'medium' group i s not very great, and a board should consider this fact i f i t i s con-sidering acting on the results of this study and alt e r i n g i t s operating procedures. Boards in d i s t r i c t s of medium heterogeneity might minimize their chances of board-public c o n f l i c t by adopting medium EDI procedures. This would seem to be in keeping with the findings from the co r r e l a t i o n a l and multiple c l a s s i f i c a -t i o n analyses regarding c o n f l i c t , and would represent the best compromise between maximizing e f f i c i e n c y and minimizing the p o s s i b i l i t i e s of c o n f l i c t . High • heterogeneity. The most s i g n i f i c a n t and interesting findings of the study concern d i s t r i c t s of high heterogen-e i t y ; t y p i c a l l y large urban d i s t r i c t s . The multiple c l a s s i -f i c a t i o n analysis indicates very c l e a r l y that d i s t r i c t s of high heterogeneity experience less c o n f l i c t i f they have HED procedures than i f they have LED procedures. D i s t r i c t s with high heterogeneity seem to have more c o n f l i c t than d i s t r i c t s with low or medium heterogeneity no matter which operating procedure they adopt, but the amount of c o n f l i c t can be minimized by the adoption of HED procedures. In other words, large urban d i s t r i c t s of high hetero-geneity do not have the option of maximizing e f f i c i e n c y by adopting LED procedures. They adopt such procedures at the 124 r i s k of increasing c o n f l i c t between the board and the public, c o n f l i c t that w i l l probably take up more time and resources than can be saved through adoption of LED procedures. Personal conversations and examination of the data indicate that of the three boards in the 'high heterogeneity - low EDI 1 c e l l , a l l three are large urban d i s t r i c t s whose operating procedures are largely the result of happenstance -that some administrators have attempted to change the proce-dures, but exigencies, custom, and board members who l i k e to fe e l that they are "keeping their hands on the pulse of the public" have combined to defeat such attempts. In contrast, of the three d i s t r i c t s i n the 'high heterogeneity - high EDI 1 c e l l , one i s a large urban d i s t r i c t whose administrators have made a determined e f f o r t to have HED procedures adopted and have been successful, thus going against the trend of LED procedures in large d i s t r i c t s noted i n the findings: the second d i s t r i c t i s a large urban dis-t r i c t with board members who feel strongly that the board should be open to public view, not because of ideas concerning conflict," but from a normative viewpoint. The thi r d d i s t r i c t in that c e l l i s an anomaly: i t i s a f a i r l y small d i s t r i c t that i s extremely heterogeneous. Its EDI i s about what one would expect from a small d i s t r i c t , and i s the re s u l t of circumstances rather than design to some extent, although the administration and board recognize i n t u i t i v e l y that the population "needs" that s t y l e of operation. 125 SUMMARY The present study has revealed a paradoxical combina-tion of trends. Large d i s t r i c t s tend to have LED procedures, and to be heterogeneous, as indicated on Page 76. Heterogen-eous d i s t r i c t s with LED procedures tend to experience more c o n f l i c t than do heterogeneous d i s t r i c t s with HED procedures. In other words, the greater the need for a d i s t r i c t to have HED procedures, the less l i k e l y i t i s to have such procedures. Some d i s t r i c t s that have reversed this trend have done so partly through a conscious e f f o r t on the part of the administration and with the cooperation of the board members. It seems that boards in highly heterogeneous d i s t r i c t s that wish to minimize the p o s s i b i l i t y of c o n f l i c t between the board and the public may have to make a determined e f f o r t to change operating procedures from the procedure that occurs naturally in such d i s t r i c t s to one that may be seen as inconvenient or inappropriate, but which seems to have a weaker association with c o n f l i c t . This chapter has set forth the findings of the study and discussed them i n terms of the degree of agreement (or lack thereof) between the findings of the study and the view expressed i n the l i t e r a t u r e of school board p o l i t i c s and community c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s . The following chapter provides a summary of the study, and presents the recommendations and implications a r i s i n g from the study. Chapter 6 SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS The f i r s t section of the chapter summarizes the study, including the background, the problem, the design of the study, the methodology and the findings. The second section of the chapter d e t a i l s the implications of the findings. NATURE OF THE STUDY Background The present study came about because the researcher wanted to know why some school boards in B r i t i s h Columbia had more c o n f l i c t with the publics they served than did other boards. The l i t e r a t u r e pertaining to the p o l i t i c s of educa-tion indicted that in order to answer the question i t would be necessary to examine closely the l i t e r a t u r e dealing with the areas of c o n f l i c t , school board operating procedures, and the demographic nature of communities. Literature Review From the l i t e r a t u r e pertaining to c o n f l i c t an opera-t i o n a l d e f i n i t i o n of c o n f l i c t was derived: c o n f l i c t i s a disagreement a r i s i n g from perceived incompatible interests between two or more parties, resolution of which requires an 126 127 extraordinary a l l o c a t i o n of resources. C o n f l i c t may vary as to the cause or subject, the in t e n s i t y , and the amount of c o n f l i c t , or the number of incidents or instances. Communities can be c l a s s i f i e d in various ways, and one of the most useful (and apparently important) ways i s by l e v e l s of heterogeneity. Communities where a l l members share common ch a r a c t e r i s t i c s may be thought of as homogeneous, while communities where there i s a wide div e r s i t y of charac-t e r i s t i c s may be thought of as heterogeneous. These d i f f e r -ent types of communities are apt to require quite d i f f e r e n t styles of government. Authorities on school board style or operating proce-dure t y p i c a l l y c l a s s i f i e d school boards as ranging from e l i t e or closed to delegate or open, depending on how school board members saw their roles as representatives, and how the board structured i t s operations. It was found that although various writers had sug-gested causal l i n k s between board operating procedures and c o n f l i c t , there were discrepancies between their theories. It was therefore decided to attempt to discover what correla-tions existed between school board operating procedures, the demographic nature of communities, and the amount of c o n f l i c t school boards experience in their dealings with the public. The present study also considered the subject and intensity of c o n f l i c t . 128 Methodology Minutes of. a l l public meetings held by school boards i n B r i t i s h Columbia during 1978 were examined. Demands made of each board were categorized, and the number of demands i d e n t i f i e d as made externally was divided by the number of a l l demands. The resulting External Demand Index (EDI) was used as the measure of board operating procedure. Nine boards from either extreme and from the mid-point range of the seventy-five B r i t i s h Columbia school boards as measured by EDI were selected as a sample. Census data for these twenty-seven d i s t r i c t s were used to arrive at a measure of heterogeneity. F i n a l l y , board members and administrators in the twenty-seven d i s t r i c t s were sent questionnaires to determine the number of c o n f l i c t s that arose between the board and the public in a one-year period, as well as the subject and intensity of these c o n f l i c t s . Findings It was found that boards range from .31 to .92 on the External Demand Index, suggesting that school boards i n B r i t i s h Columbia exhibit a wide range of operating procedures as determined by the method of processing demands from the public. EDI decreased as d i s t r i c t size increased, and con-f l i c t increased as size increased. C o n f l i c t s about pupils, e s p e c i a l l y busing and crosswalks, tended to be more numerous and intense than other c o n f l i c t s . Large urban d i s t r i c t s o 129 tended to experience' greater c o n f l i c t concerning physical plant and in s t r u c t i o n a l matters than did small d i s t r i c t s . It was found that there i s a s i g n i f i c a n t interaction c o r r e l a t i o n between heterogeneity, board operating procedure, and the amount of c o n f l i c t , and that school boards operating i n heterogeneous communities tend to have less c o n f l i c t with the public i f they operate with a high EDI. It was also found that heterogeneity i s a better predictor of c o n f l i c t than i s d i s t r i c t s i z e . Figure 5 indicates the average amount of c o n f l i c t for each c e l l . COMMUNITY HETEROGENEITY .4727 - .5120 .5136 - .5286 .5295 - .5769 L .31 0 to 2.5 6.0 14.3 w .44 B 0 M A E ' R D .53 D I to 9.5 3.3 11.0 U .61 E M D I H .68 I to 4.0 7.0 8.2 G .92 H Note: Numbers in c e l l s indicate average numbers of c o n f l i c t incidents. FIGURE 5 INTERACTION BETWEEN COMMUNITY HETEROGENEITY, EXTERNAL DEMAND INDEX, AND AMOUNT OF CONFLICT CONCLUSIONS 130 This section w i l l d e t a i l the conclusions that arise from the study, and the following section w i l l suggest recom-mendations for further study. The conclusions are separated into two areas: the cor r e l a t i o n between board operating procedure and board-public c o n f l i c t , and issues over which c o n f l i c t arises in school d i s t r i c t s . The major conclusions of the study stem from the findings related to the interaction among operating proce-dure, community demography, and c o n f l i c t . 1. Boards in d i s t r i c t s of lower heterogeneity may increase the e f f i c i e n c y of their procedures without increasing c o n f l i c t by adopting low external demand (LED) proce-dures; that i s , by having requests or demands channelled through the administration or through trustees. 2. Boards in d i s t r i c t s of high heterogeneity may be able to decrease the li k e l i h o o d of c o n f l i c t by adopting high external demand (HED) procedures, even at an apparent cost in e f f i c i e n c y . While i t may take more time to have a l l demands made formally at the board table by l e t t e r or delegation, and while set question periods may use up valuable meeting time, and while special meetings with the public and wide dissemination of information about the system may be time-consuming, the net gain 131 experienced through not having to spend time dealing with c o n f l i c t should more than make up for the apparent decrease in e f f i c i e n c y . Although involving the public and perhaps the teaching s t a f f in educational decisions may be time-consuming, boards in highly heterogeneous d i s t i c t s should consider the benefits that result from such p o l i c i e s . The following conclusions deal with subjects and inte n s i t y of c o n f l i c t . 3. Boards in d i s t r i c t s having a population with a wide range of education may experience more c o n f l i c t over the use of school f a c i l i t i e s than boards with less educational heterogeneity. 4. Boards in d i s t r i c t s having a population with a large d i v e r s i t y of mother tongue may expect c o n f l i c t over matters involving pupil well-being, as may large urban d i s t r i c t s (to some extent these d i s t r i c t s are synon-ymous) . 5. Boards should be aware that when c o n f l i c t involving pupils develops, i t i s l i k e l y to be intense. 6. Boards in large d i s t r i c t s , d i s t r i c t s in the southwest corner of the province, or d i s t r i c t s with a high hetero-geneity of age or education seem to experience consid-erable c o n f l i c t over i n s t r u c t i o n a l matters. A general conclusion that seems to be an important consideration in a variety of areas: 132 School d i s t r i c t s exhibit many differences, and i t seems l o g i c a l that variations of size, wealth, location and so forth must play an important role in the way the public interacts with the board. The results of the present study strongly suggest that heterogeneity plays a v i t a l r o le in determining the nature of such relationships. RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FURTHER STUDY In the course of carrying out this study, additional questions were i d e n t i f i e d which seemed to warrant further study. The recommendations which follow are grouped under two headings: methodological and t h e o r e t i c a l . Methodological Three d i s t i n c t methodologies were used in the present study for gathering data, and a r e l a t i v e l y innovative s t a t i s -t i c a l procedure was used for data analysis. School board operating procedure was measured through inspec-tion of minutes of public metings. This procedure resulted i n an External Demand Index that correlates well with other indicators of board operating procedure. The r e l a t i v e s i m p l i c i t y of this technique, and i t s a b i l i t y to provide a r e l i a b l e measure of board operating procedure, leads to the following recommendation: 1. The External Demand Index, or an index derived by similar means, may offer s o c i o l o g i s t s and p o l i t i c a l s c i e n t i s t s a 133 r e l i a b l e , unobtrusive measure of board operating proce-dures of l e g i s l a t i v e bodies. It would be useful to ascertain i f this technique could be used for governing bodies other than school boards. Relative heterogeneity of communities was measured using a technique devised by Lieberson (1969). Although widely used by s o c i o l o g i s t s , this technique was not been widely used i n education studies. This leads to a second recommendation: 2. Lieberson's measure of heterogeneity may be useful to researchers studying phenomena in various educational areas in a number of school d i s t r i c t s . C o n f l i c t was measured through a questionnaire that required ' respondents to supply incidents they perceived as c o n f l i c -t u a l . The method proved to be simple and e f f e c t i v e . 3. Researchers might consider using questionnaires that allow respondents to structure the categories rather than having the structure supplied by the researcher. This method may have application in a variety of areas in the s o c i a l sciences. Correlations were carried out through various s t a t i s t i c a l techniques. Boudon's (1968) suggested technique for exam-ining correlations between independent variables that are suspected of being i n t e r a c t i v e resulted in a more s i g n i f i c a n t r e s u l t than either multiple correlation or ANOVA. This tech-nique has not received wide attention, which suggests the 134 following recommendation: 4. Boudon's correlation for interactive variables may pro-vide a useful s t a t i s t i c a l technique. Further study would, help to establish i t s r e l i a b i l i t y . Theoretical The study found s i g n i f i c a n t correlations between sev-e r a l combinations of variables, some of which merit further consideration. Operating procedure of school boards varies widely from d i s t r i c t to d i s t r i c t , and the size of the d i s t r i c t seems to have some effect on the type of procedure adopted, as shown by Table V on Page 77. The present study yielded results that are at variance with the results of some other studies. One of the implications of the findings i s that boards that operate in a ward system might be expected to exhibit high EDI c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , as board members w i l l relate to a cer-t a i n segment of the population, and w i l l act as a delegate for their constituency. Since the present study made no attempt to determine why boards adopt a certain type of procedure, the following recommendation i s suggested: 5. It would be interesting to attempt to discover how opera-ting procedures are adopted, and why. Further research might be carried out in this area. Such research might also seek to explain the relationship between operating procedure and d i s t r i c t size, and to see whether ward or at-large systems d i f f e r . 135 C o n f l i c t . The study found some s i g n i f i c a n t correlations between aspects of c o n f l i c t and certain variables. Some of these relationships are either obvious or t r i v i a l (busing i s a source of conflict," or large d i s t r i c t s have more c o n f l i c t than small d i s t r i c t s , for example), but the following are worthy of further study: 6. Large d i s t r i c t s , and/or d i s t r i c t s in the southwest corner of the province, experience more c o n f l i c t concerning i n s t r u c t i o n than do other d i s t r i c t s . What i s the exact relationship? Why does i t occur? (The finding regarding the geographical location i s p a r t i c u l a r l y i n t e r e s t i n g . The c o r r e l a t i o n i s greater than i s explicable by the fact that many large d i s t r i c t s are located in that area. Is there some relationship between the distance from the Ministry of Education and interest about in s t r u c t i o n a l matters? Does a concentration of population play a part?) 7. Heterogeneity seems to be the only predictor of c o n f l i c t a r i s i n g from concerns about physical plant. What i s there about heterogeneous d i s t r i c t s that makes physical plant a contentious issue? The analyses of relationships between various ele-ments of heterogeneity and c o n f l i c t concerning s p e c i f i c items indicated a number of s t a t i s t i c a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t r e l a t i o n -ships. Some possible explanations for these relationships 136 were presented i n Chapter Five, but further study i s needed to confirm these explanations or provide alternatives: 8. How do factors such as heterogeneity of mother tongue, age, education, and occupation affect c o n f l i c t ? Why? The study found s i g n i f i c a n t relationships between these variables and c o n f l i c t . The study was an exploratory one, since the l i t e r a t u r e did not supply s u f f i c i e n t evidence to allow hypothesis te s t i n g . This present study suggests hypotheses for testing i n . t h i s area: 9. How well do variables of board operating procedure and d i s t r i c t heterogeneity predict c o n f l i c t ? What are the causal factors, and exactly how do they operate? Are there intervening variables? Is i t possible that large heterogeneous d i s t r i c t s elect boards that provoke con-f l i c t ? Further study i s needed in this area. It was pointed out in the survey of the l i t e r a t u r e (Page 26) that the relationships between c o n f l i c t and s a t i s -faction on the part of the public have not been examined. A study designed to examine such relationships might ask: 10. Does c o n f l i c t indicate d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n on the part of the public? Does c o n f l i c t increase as the public becomes less s a t i s f i e d with the school system? 137 Further Recommendations The previous sections have discussed recommendations regarding further study of school boards. It i s possible that the results of this study may have implications for research i n other areas as well, p a r t i c u l a r l y as regards ser-vice organizations. One might extend the concept of in t e r -action between an organization and i t s community to municipal councils, community colleges or u n i v e r s i t i e s , or to i n d i v i d -ual schools. The methodology used to measure operating pro-cedure would have to be changed, perhaps d r a s t i c a l l y , for these other service organizations. The method of calculating the heterogeneity of the community would remain applicable, although the c o l l e c t i o n of the raw data would necessitate d i f f e r e n t procedures. To take schools as an example suggests some further research questions: 11. What structures exist for interaction between schools and th e i r communities? How may these structures be measured? How do they vary from one school to an other? 12. Do schools with d i f f e r e n t structures experience varying amounts of c o n f l i c t with their communities? 13. Are there systematic relationships between school-public c o n f l i c t and variables of community heterogeneity and/or school-public interaction procedures? Similar questions might be asked concerning other service organizations. 138 While some of the f i n a l recommendations do not deal d i r e c t l y with the subject of the study, c o n f l i c t between public organizations and the publics they serve has received scant attention from researchers. In an increasingly complex and p r e s s u r e - f i l l e d society, with government playing an increasingly important role in people's l i v e s , i t becomes increasingly important that public organizations be able to serve their publics without c o n f l i c t that might result in goal displacement and lessened effectiveness. It i s to be hoped that researchers w i l l become aware of the need for study in t h i s f i e l d , and that their work w i l l a s s i s t governments and service organizations accomplish their tasks. L I T E R A T U R E C I T E D 139 L I T E R A T U R E C I T E D Agger, R. E., D. Goldrick, and B. C. 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Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press. Webb, E. J., D. T. Campbell, R. E. Schwartz, and L. Sechrest 1966 Unobtrusive Measures: Nonreactive Research i n the Social Sciences. Chicago: Rand McNally. Wilcox, A. R. 1973 "Indices of q u a l i t a t i v e variation and p o l i t i c a l meas-urement". Western P o l i t i c a l Quarterly, 26: 325. 150 Williams, J . 1967 "Race; war and p o l i t i c s " . Negro Digest, 16: 4-9. Williams, T. and M. Powell 1980 "Issues in Canadian educational administration", in R. Farquhar and I. Housego, eds., Canadian and Com-parative Educational Administration. Vancouver: Centre for Continuing Education, Univeristy of B r i t i s h Columbia. Williams; T. R. 1977 "The lo c a l d i s t r i c t s : gaining in public v i s i b i l i t y " . P o l i t i c s of Education B u l l e t i n , (7): 2:3. Wirt, F. M. and M. W. Ki r s t 1972 The P o l i t i c a l Web of American Schools. Boston: L i t t l e , Brown. Witmer, D. 1978 School Board Council Type - Community Diversity and Public Attitude About School. Pittsburgh: Pennsyl-vania State University, unpublished D.Ed, disser-tation . Wood, R. C. 1958 Suburbia: Its People and Their P o l i t i c s . Boston: Houghton-Mifflin. Zeigler, H. L. and M. K. Jennings 1974 Governing American Schools: P o l i t i c a l Interaction in Local School D i s t r i c t s . North Scituate: Duxbury. Zimmerman, C. C. 1938 The Changing Community. New York: Harper and Row. APPENDIX A QUESTIONNAIRE i s ! BOARD - PUBLIC INTERACTION STUDY D i s t r i c t Number: Please t r y to r e c a l l any incidents which occurred between September 1978 and the present that caused f r i c t i o n between the board and members of the p u b l i c . ( I f you were not a Trustee a year ago, you were probably running f o r o f f i c e and may well have be.en aware of such incidents.) On the questionnaire, items that have caused board-public c o n f l i c t i n B.C. are l i s t e d as an aid to your memory. Please l i s t s p e c i f i c incidents under the appropriate heading. I f there i s i n s u f f i c i e n t space, place incidents under 'Other' at the end of the questionnaire. Please add any incidents not included i n the categories to the 'Other' sec t i o n . 1. Please describe the incident i n a few words, such as "Request for longer bus routes"; " S t a f f i n g at Maple School"; "Closing of Pine Street School"; "Playgrounds at Cedar School"; " L i b r a r y books", etc. IT IS IMPORTANT THAT YOU RECALL AS MANY INCIDENTS AS YOU CAN, TO PRESENT AN ACCURATE PICTURE. 2. Beside each i n c i d e n t , put the month when the incident occurred to the best of your knowledge. 3. To the l e f t of each i n c i d e n t , you w i l l see a l i n e : None > • A l l This l i n e represents the amount of time spent by the board on the i n c i d e n t . Place a slash _ _ / 1 at that point on the l i n e that i n d i c a t e s the amount of time spent. ( I t i s u n l i k e l y , but p o s s i b l e , that the board spent no time or a l l of i t s time r e s o l v i n g the problem.) For Example: AMOUNT INCIDENT MONTH None Ca f e t e r i a and Food Services -• A l l School Closure None •- -f~» A l l /Th ocnooj t-josure  In the f i r s t example, there were a few complaints about junk food i n school c a f e t e r i a s , but the matter died q u i c k l y , and the board spent l i t t l e time on i t . In the second example, when the board announced the c l o s i n g of Pine St. School, there were p e t i t i o n s , l e t t e r s , delegations, newspaper a r t i c l e s , and so on, and the board spent a great deal of time and e f f o r t attempting to resolve the problem. In f a c t , while the matter was current the board spent l i t t l e time on anything e l s e . 12 153 - 2 BOARD - PUBLIC INTERACTION STUDY (Continued) PLEASE LIST ALL THE INCIDENTS YOU CAN RECALL AMOUNT INCIDENT MONTH Use of F a c i l i t i e s , r e n t a l , equipment, etc. None • • A l l None • • A l l None > • A l l None • A l l Bussing and pup i l transportation None m • A l l None > • A l l None > • A l l None • • A l l Curriculum None • • A l l None • • A l l None • • A l l None • • A l l French Immersion None • • A l l None > • A l l None • • A l l School s i t e s , playgrounds, etc. None • • A l l None • • A l l None • • A l l None a • A l l School Closure None • A l l None • • A l l None > > A l l None > A l l . . . . is 154 - 3 -BOARD - PUBLIC INTERACTION STUDY (Continued) PLEASE LIST ALL THE INCIDENTS YOU CAN RECALL AMOUNT INCIDENT MONTH Report cards None • • A l l None • • A l l None • • A l l School boundaries, attendance None • • A l l None • • A l l None • > A l l Hours of school operation None • • A l l None • • A l l None • A l l -Crosswalks and p a t r o l s None • • A l l None • —• A l l None • • A l l B u i l d i n g maintenance, renovation, etc. None • • A l l None • • A l l None • • A l l C a f e t e r i a and food services None • • A l l None • A l l None • A l l L i b r a r y books, i n s t r u c t i o n a l materials None • • A l l None • A l l None • • A l l . . . . /4 155 BOARD - PUBLIC INTERACTION STUDY (Continued;) PLEASE LIST ALL THE INCIDENTS YOU CAN RECALL AMOUNT INCIDENT MONTH -Grade organization i n schools None • : • A l l Hone • » A l l None • • A l l Other None • — — « A l l None • * A l l None • —« A l l None • — — « A l l None • • A l l None • —» A l l None • • A l l None • * A l l None • -—• A l l None • • A l l None • — — • A l l None » « A l l None • -» A l l None • — • A l l None • • A l l None • « A l l None • • A l l None • a A l l None • — • A l l None • — • A l l IJC/mem. 1979-11-12. APPENDIX B COVER LETTER TO DISTRICT ADMINISTRATION COVER LETTER TO TRUSTEES FOLLOW-UP LETTER 156 157 THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA tan WESBROOK MALL VANCOUVER. B.C.. CANADA V6T IW5 FACULTY OF EDUCATION CENTRE FOR THE STUDY OF ADMINISTRATION IN EDUCATION 1979-11-12. Dear Thank you f o r a s s i s t i n g with the study of school boards that I am conducting. A l l twenty-seven of the superintendents that I spoke to were w i l l i n g to help with the study and, although several stated that they could not commit t h e i r boards, I am hopeful that I w i l l receive responses from a l l twenty-seven school boards, thus increasing the v a l i d i t y of the study. Enclosed you w i l l f i n d s u f f i c i e n t copies of the questionnaire and covering l e t t e r f o r your trustees and some members of your d i s t r i c t s t a f f , i n c l u d i n g ( i f possible) y o u r s e l f , a s s i s t a n t super-intendents, d i r e c t o r s and/or supervisors. I would appreciate i t i f you could d i s t r i b u t e the questionnaires and covering l e t t e r s to trustees and appropriate o f f i c i a l s . Perhaps the material f o r trustees could be sent out i n the board agenda package with a note asking that the completed questionnaires be brought to the next board meeting i n the envelope provided and given to y o u r s e l f f o r r e t u r n . I f you could return questionnaires from trustees and o f f i c i a l s by 1979-12-20, i t would be a considerable help. Upon r e c e i p t of the questionnaires, I w i l l c o l l a t e the returns f o r each d i s t r i c t . I do not intend to analyze i n d i v i d u a l question-n a i r e s , but i t would be h e l p f u l i f administrators' questionnaires could be i d e n t i f i e d as such. 12 As I suggested on the phone, the study should be completed by the Summer of 1980. At that time, I w i l l send a pr e c i s of the study to the boards that are involved, g i v i n g general r e s u l t s but not i d e n t i f y i n g i n d i v i d u a l d i s t r i c t s . I w i l l a l s o , on request, discuss with boards or o f f i c i a l s the r e s u l t s of the study p e r t a i n i n g to t h e i r d i s t r i c t " . Thank you"very much f o r your time and e f f o r t on my behalf. I hope the r e s u l t s w i l l be useful to you as well as to education administrative theory. Yours t r u l y . lan J . Cameron. O f f i c e 17, South- Scarfe O f f i c e Block Faculty of Education U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia IJC/mem. Committee: Research Advisor: Dr. J.H.A. K a l l i n , UBC Members: Dr. W.J. H a r t r i c k , UBC Dr. J.G.T. Kelsey, UBC Dr. Elmer Froese, Bumaby School D i s t r i c t E nds. 159 T H E U N I V E R S I T Y O F B R I T I S 1 1 C O L U M B I A 2crs WLSIlkOOk MALI VANCOUVER, n C . CANADA V 6 T 1 W S FACULTY OF EDUCATION CENTRE FOR THE STUDY OF ADMINISTRATION IN EDUCATION 1979-11-12. Dear Trustee: I am w r i t i n g to ask f o r your assistance i n a study, concerning the d i f f i -c u l t i e s school boards may experience i n t h e i r r e l a t i o n s w i t h the p u b l i c . In some d i s t r i c t s , trustees complain that the p u b l i c i s not i n t e r e s t e d i n education because there are no observers at board meetings and trustees are elected by acclamation, while i n neighbouring d i s t r i c t s t r u s t e e s complain that they can't make a d e c i s i o n without r e c e i v i n g p e t i t i o n s , phone c a l l s , or i r a t e delegations from the p u b l i c . There seems to be no obvious pattern to s t r a i n between boards and the p u b l i c . Some large d i s t r i c t s experience f r i c t i o n while others don't; some r u r a l d i s t r i c t s do and others don't; some wealthy d i s t r i c t s do while others dont't, and so on. Recently, however, research i n the United States has suggested that perhaps the way i n which a board conducts i t s business, the way i t operates from day to day, may have some e f f e c t on the amount of s t r a i n or c o n f l i c t i t has with the p u b l i c . The study I am asking you to take part i n i s designed to determine why some school boards have more c o n f l i c t with the p u b l i c than do others. In my work so f a r , I have examined the minutes of a l l regular board meetings held i n B r i t i s h Columbia i n 1978, and have chosen twenty-seven boards f o r the study. These twenty-seven boards have been c a r e f u l l y s e l e c t e d to represent various d i s t r i c t s i z e s , l o c a t i o n s , and board operating procedures. The next Btep i s to measure the c o n f l i c t these boards experience with the p u b l i c . This could be done by examining newspaper accounts, or by surveying teachers or r e s i -dents of the d i s t r i c t s , but those procedures are l i k e l y to r e s u l t i n an inaccurate or incomplete p i c t u r e . I t would, however, be f a r more accurate to receive the information from the trustees and administrators d i r e c t l y concerned. Your d i s t r i c t has been selected as one of the twenty-seven, and I would be very g r a t e f u l i f you could spend ten to f i f t e e n minutes completing the enclosed questionnaire. The questionnaire contains d i r e c t i o n s , but 1 would l i k e to emphasize the f o l l o w i n g p o i n t s : 1. A l l information w i l l be s t r i c t l y c o n f i d e n t i a l . S p e c i f i c d i s t r i c t s w i l l not be i d e n t i f i e d or i d e n t i f i a b l e i n the study; 2. The r e s u l t s of the study w i l l enable B r i t i s h Columbia school boards to provide more e f f e c t i v e leadership i n education; APPENDIX C CALCULATION OF INDICES OF HETEROGENEITY 162 CALCULATION OF INDICES OF HETEROGENEITY The index of heterogeneity used in the study was calculated by a method described by Lieberson (1969), after a process f i r s t developed to determine language d i v e r s i t y . The community under study i s described i n terms of the probability that randomly paired members of the community w i l l be a l i k e in terms of a given demographic variable. Suppose the community i s a very small one, composed of fiv e persons, and the variable chosen i s ethnicity. If a l l f i v e inhabitants are English, the community w i l l be tot-a l l y homogeneous with respect to that variable, and i f two people are drawn at random, there i s a 100% chance that they w i l l have a similar ethnic background. If the members of the population are replaced one at a time by people of d i f f e r e n t e t h n i c i t y , then the chance of drawing two with i d e n t i c a l background shrinks u n t i l when a l l fiv e are of d i f f e r e n t ethnic o r i g i n , the chance becomes 0. Lieberson suggests that i t i s possible to determine that p o s s i b i l i t y when examining a large community by treating the data as follows: Suppose that the variable i s ethnicity, and that four ethnic backgrounds are being considered. The to t a l popula-tion of the community i s then represented by the formula x l + X2 + X3 + X4 = 1.00," where each X i s that 163 164 percentage (in decimal form) of the population having a certain ethnic background. The proportion of pairs with each possible ethnic combination i s the square of the above multinomial, so: Equation 1 (Xi + X 2 + X 3 + X4)2 = (Xi)2 + ( X 2 ) 2 + (X 3)2 + (X 4)2 + 2[(XiX2) + (X1X3) + (X1X4) + (X 2X 3) + (X 2X 4) + (X3X4)] = 1.00 The proportion of pairs with a common ethnic back-ground, C, i s the sum of squares for a l l groups; i n this case, the f i r s t four terms. The proportion of pairs without a common ethnic background, D, i s the sum of the la s t six terms. C + D = 1.00. Since C i s easier to compute than D, A w, the probability of a dif f e r e n t ethnicity for any two persons sampled at random for the community, i s 1.00 - C. If everyone i s of similar e t h n i c i t y , A w = 0. If everyone i s di f f e r e n t , then the index would be .75 (Lieberson, 1969:852). After calculating the degree of heterogeneity for each d i s t r i c t in the sample, on each of the five variables, an index of heterogeneity using a l l fi v e variables was arrived at, using the following method, also suggested by Lieberson: 165 Each community in the study was cross-tabulated by Mother Tongue (three classes: M^  , M2, M3), Education (three classes: E^ , E2, E3) , Income (three classes: Il> x2> x3)» Occupation (four classes: Oi, O2, O3> 04)> a I K* Age (three classes: A±, A2, A3). As for the procedure for determining heterogeneity within a variable (A w), the researcher randomly paired a l l members of the population, and A^ indicates the proportion of disagreement between pairs. The maximum cohesion exists i f everyone has the same mother tongue, education;, income, occupation, and age. Under these circumstances, A^ would be 0. If a l l persons had di f f e r e n t mother tongues, educa-t i o n , incomes, occupations and ages, A^ would be .71. The number of combinations in th i s study i s ( 3 x 3 x 3 x 4 x 3 ) = 324. Each person in the population belongs to one of the 324 possible combinations. The propor-tion of the population belonging to each combination may be e a s i l y determined, and for each combination i t i s possible to measure i t s degree of s i m i l a r i t y with any other combination. For example, two persons belonging to the same combination, e.g., M l E i I i O i A i , are similar on a l l f i v e of the variables. If a person who belongs to that combination i s paired with an M1E1I1O1A2, they share common mother tongues, education, income, and occupation] but d i f f e r on age. Therefore, they share four of five c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s , and have an agreement weight of 4/5. 166 When computing A^, the same rationale i s followed as for A w, but the pairs between any two combinations must be considered as possibly leading to some degree of commonly shared c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s . Therefore, the formula for computing the Afo index for a population c r o s s - c l a s s i f i e d by five q u a l i t a t i v e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s with 324 combinations i s , i n complete form: Equation 2 A b = 1 - (324 C i 2 + 2(324) + 324 CijWij) where i s the proportion of the population in a given combination; C^j refers to a pair of combinations, i and j , expressed as cross-products of their proportions of the population, and Wij i s the proportion of specified char-a c t e r i s t i c s shared between the pair of combinations desig-nated by Cij . However, i t i s not necessary to use this f u l l equation. Given the d i s t r i b u t i o n of population among the categories in each variables, the ensuing combinations of t h i s d i s t r i b u t i o n have no bearing on the value of the A^ index. The index values are solely a function of the f r e -quency d i s t r i b u t i o n within each variable's categories and are not affected by the diff e r e n t possible combinations of the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s . If the percentage of the population belonging to each variable i s known, the level of div e r s i t y 167 i s fixed and that information on the di f f e r e n t combinations of the variables i s not needed. Therefore, an equation for determining d i v e r s i t y between variables may be induced from Equation 2 as follows: Equation 3 A, = 1 - 324Y, 2 b k 5 where i s the proportion of the population belonging to a group within each variable (Lieberson, 1969:854). APPENDIX D QUESTIONNAIRE TABULATION 168 QUESTIONNAIRE TABULATION One of the reasons the researcher sent questionnaires to several respondents in each d i s t r i c t studied was that i t was f e l t that c o n f l i c t i s a subjective item, and there would be a greater l i k e l i h o o d of obtaining an accurate measure i f the opinions of several observers were pooled than i f only one observer's opinion were used as a measure. The resear-cher anticipated a considerable variation i n the responses from any given d i s t r i c t , and the re s u l t s confirmed t h i s expectation. The returns of the f i r s t ten d i s t r i c t s with complete returns were analyzed to ascertain how the returns should be tabulated. This analysis led to two findings; one concerning the number of responses from any given d i s t r i c t and the other concerning the requisites to be met by any c o n f l i c t incident in order for i t to be tabulated. Number of Returns Needed The number of returns required by any given d i s t r i c t i n order to be confident that the d i s t r i c t was accurately represented was ascertained as follows: the to t a l items i d e n t i f i e d by the respondents were l i s t e d , and each question-naire was eliminated from the total number of questionnaires one at a time and the items of the remaining questionnaires compared to the tota l l i s t . This process was repeated by 169 170 pairs, then threes. In other words, i f a d i s t r i c t returned eight questionnaires, with a tota l of twenty-one c o n f l i c t incidents i d e n t i f i e d , each of the eight was deleted and the incidents i d e n t i f i e d in the remaining seven compared to the l i s t of twenty-one incidents. Two of the eight were then deleted simultaneously at random, and the incidents in the remaining six were compared to the l i s t of total incidents. Three of the eight were then deleted, then four. The results are shown in Table XIV following. It i s apparent that in the case of the board des-cribed in Table XIV, tabulation of any four of the responses re s u l t s in a to t a l number that i s 86% to 91% of the number of incidents i d e n t i f i e d in a l l eight responses. If three res-ponses are considered, the number of incidents i d e n t i f i e d drops to 57% to 71% of the t o t a l . Similar results were found with tests conducted on the returns from other d i s t r i c t s . In each case, tabulation of any four returns resulted in a number of incidents 90% or more of the t o t a l . In some cases, inclusion of only three returns resulted i n a number of incidents that was 80% of the t o t a l , but in most cases the number remained at about 60%. It was therefore decided to take four returns ran-domly from each board, and tabulate those returns to id e n t i f y the number of incidents that might be counted as c o n f l i c t s . This procedure allowed the researcher to include ten dis-t r i c t s that returned only four questionnaires, at a minimal 171 cost in accuracy. However, the fact an incident had been cit e d by one respondent was not s u f f i c i e n t to cause i t s inclus i o n as a c o n f l i c t incident. TABLE XIV TABULATION OF QUESTIONNAIRE RESPONSES TRIAL 1 Number of Responses Tabulated 8 7 6 5 4 3 Items Identified 21 21 21 20 19 13 TRIAL 2 Number of Responses Tabulated 8 7 6 5 4 3 Items Identified 21 20 19 18 18 14 TRIAL 3 Number of Responses Tabulated 8 7 6 5 4 3 Items Identified 21 21 21 20 18 12 TRIAL 4 Number of Responses Tabulated 8 7 6 5 4 3 Items Identified 21 21 21 20 19 13 TRIAL 5 Number of Responses Tabulated 8 0 7 6 5 4 3 Items Identified • . 21 21 20 19 19 15 C r i t e r i o n for Inclusion as an Incident It was obvious after the f i r s t few (complete) dis-t r i c t returns were received that some respondents were far less s e l e c t i v e in their choice of incidents to include than were others, and there was considerable variation in patterns 172 from d i s t r i c t to d i s t r i c t . In some d i s t r i c t s , a l l respondents i d e n t i f i e d almost exactly the same incidents as representing c o n f l i c t in their d i s t r i c t , perhaps with the respondent iden-t i f y i n g the greatest number l i s t i n g seven incidents, and the respondent identifying the least number l i s t i n g five i n c i -dents, and there were seven incidents i d e n t i f i e d by most of the respondents. In another d i s t r i c t , the 'highest' respon-dent i d e n t i f i e d twenty-five items while the 'lowest' i d e n t i -f i e d only s ix, a far greater range. The l a t t e r d i s t r i c t represented the greatest disparity between respondents. Analysis of the responses in that d i s t r i c t showed that there were a t o t a l of twenty-eight incidents i d e n t i f i e d . If the c r i t e r i o n for inclusion was that a l l four respondents had to i d e n t i f y an incident in order for i t to be counted by the researcher, there were only six incidents (the number i d e n t i -f i e d by the 'lowest' respondent). If incidents i d e n t i f i e d by any three were counted, the number rose to twelve. If i n c i -dents i d e n t i f i e d by any two were counted, the number rose to f i f t e e n . Two d i s t r i c t s were contacted and respondents asked to consider the tota l l i s t of incidents generated by the questionnaires. The consensus of opinion in the d i s t r i c t described above was that fourteen incidents represented c o n f l i c t . This number agreed closely with the number of incidents counted i f those i d e n t i f i e d by any two respondents were counted. A similar result was obtained in the second 173 d i s t r i c t . It was therefore decided to count as a c o n f l i c t incident any incident i d e n t i f i e d by two respondents i n a given d i s t r i c t , out of the four returns chosen at random to represent that d i s t r i c t . APPENDIX E CONFLICT INCIDENTS AS REPORTED BY MEMBERS AND DISTRICT OFFICIALS 174 CONFLICT INCIDENTS AS REPORTED BY BOARD MEMBERS AND DISTRICT OFFICIALS Number of boards studied: — — — — — — 23 Total number of returns: — - — — _ _ _ — — _ _ _ 141 Number of returns tabulated: _________ 92 (4 per board) ( A l l following information i s based on the 92 returns tabulated). Number of Incidents Total number of incidents reported: — — 201 Least number reported: ------— — - — - 2 Greatest number reported: ____ 16 Average number: Mean ------------------ 8.7 Median - — — 7 Mode -------—___________ 9 Intensity Average i n t e n s i t y : — — — — — — — — — 31 (out of 80) Lowest average reported: — — — — — 6.6 Highest average reported: — — — — — — — — 71 Subjects of C o n f l i c t Total c o n f l i c t s about physical plant: 40 Total c o n f l i c t s about pupils: — — — — — 90 Total c o n f l i c t s about s t a f f : — — — . _ _ _ _ — 28 Total c o n f l i c t s about i n s t r u c t i o n : - - — — 31 Non-classifiable: — — — — — — — — — — — 12 175 176 Sp e c i f i c Contributors to C o n f l i c t INCIDENTS NUMBER OF INCIDENTS AVERAGE INTENSITY (OUT OF 80 Bus routes 24 42 School boundaries 17 46 School closure or p a r t i a l closure 16 58 School crosswalks and crossing guards 15 38 French Immersion or Exposure 15 29 Use of surplus space 10 34 F a c i l i t i e s rental 8 26 Instructional programs 6 43 Student behaviour 6 46 Teacher competence 5 70 Special education 5 61 Playgrounds and equipment 4 27 Grade configuration 4 39 Dismissal times 4 28 Cafeterias 4 25 Maintenance 4 18 Other incidents leading to c o n f l i c t included j o i n t use of f a c i l i t i e s , vandal alarms, CUPE strikes, paid aides, class s i z e , l i b r a r i e s , budget, l i a i s o n with parent groups, and establishment of value schools. 

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