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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The nature of legislated policy : a comparative analysis educational legislation Wright, Annette E.

Abstract

This study, an interprovincial comparative study, examined selected Canadian provincial educational legislation as metapolicy, that is, as policy which guides the educational policymaking process. The conceptual-analytical framework was suggested by concepts proposed by Kerr and by a re-formulation of legislated policy into the tasks and sub-tasks undertaken by provincial systems. The analyses, which dealt with format, content, type and purpose, as well as the relationships among these, led to the following conclusions: (1) although one may infer a Canada-wide concept of what constitutes a provincial educational system, no such inference may be made concerning the operations of, and services offered in individual educational institutions; (2) all provinces tend to use resource policies as the means of educational control; (3) three interlocking policy frameworks emerge— legal, procedural and operational—suggesting permissive, restrictive and invitational metapolicy characteristics; (4) most interprovincial differences occur in the area of services and operations—the area from which most controversial issues of a Canada-wide nature arise; and (5) non-specificity of purposes allows legislation to retain flexibility. Finally, specific modifications to the conceptual framework may enhance its utility as an analytic tool, namely, allowance for policies to qualify as educational on more than one count, consideration of policy flexibility, more precise classification within the resource policy category and a different analytical sequence in the use of the concepts.

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