Congratulations to the new PhD student Yelizaveta Tumlovskaja on the successful defence of her doctoral dissertation The Evaluation of the Quality of Performance of General Education Schools: Between Control and Freedom (Educational Sciences (S 007), scientific supervisers prof. dr. Dalia Survutaitė (2018-2019) and prof. dr. Jonas Rušcus (2019-2023)), and on the acquiring PhD degree in Social Sciences in the field of Educational Sciences.
The dissertation is available at Vytautas Magnus University and Lithuanian National M. Mažvydas Library.
The dissertation is available at 11 Studentų g. 11, Akademy, Kaunas district, Lithuania.
A brief annotation of the doctoral thesis is presented below:
The dissertation presents a critical analysis of the mechanism of dual assessment and external evaluation of Lithuanian general education schools. In the theoretical part, the ontological nature of the evaluation of general education schools is analysed on the basis of Sartre’s (2000) philosophical concepts of the Panopticon and Waldensianism (2000), the Other View and Foucault’s (1998, 2005) philosophical concepts of Panopticon and Walden. The mechanism of school evaluation is analysed from the philosophical and from the managerial sciences. The theoretical analysis reveals a contradiction of approaches to the evaluation mechanism: from the philosophical point of view, evaluation is a tool of control based on a power relationship and cannot promote freedom. From a management point of view, it is a prerequisite for quality assurance.
The methodology section introduces the integrated research strategy, identifies and justifies the choice of research strategy, discusses the principles of sampling and participant selection, the research process; introduces the quality assurance of the research results, discusses the ethics of the research and identifies the limitations of the research. Methods of analysing survey data are presented and justified.
The empirical study revealed a relatively positive attitude of the participants towards the idea of evaluation, the necessity of evaluation as a part of the management cycle, and the impact of the evaluation mechanism on the recognition of value principles in practice. However, the analysis of the participants’ experiences revealed a wide range of problems related to the implementation and experience of evaluation. Evaluation procedures do not encourage teachers to work independently and creatively; on the contrary, they feel trapped in bureaucratic regulations and see school evaluation as a disturbing mechanism of bureaucratic control, which destroys teacher and school creativity and freedom.
The results of the study suggest that the evaluation of Lithuanian mainstream schools needs to change, empowering the school community and strengthening the practice and culture of evaluation. The dissertation presents systemic and school evaluation change models that could provide an alternative to the current school evaluation mechanism. Recommendations for improving the evaluation mechanism are made on the basis of the results of the study.
Dissertation Defence Council:
Chair – prof. Lina Kaminskienė (Vytautas Magnus University, Academy of Education, Social Sciences, Education S 007).
prof. Natalija Mažeikienė (Vytautas Magnus University Academy of Education, Social Sciences, Education S 007),
prof. Rimantas Želvys (Vilnius University, Social Sciences, Education S 007),
assoc. prof. Berita Simonaitienė (Kaunas University of Technology, Social Sciences, Education S 007),
dr. Zuzanna Sury (Institute of Pedagogy, Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland, Social Sciences, Education S 007)