Against the backgrounds of twin forces (grass-root and government) that have governed the reform movement in Taiwan since 1995, the present paper attempts to assess school development along the path towards learning organizations. Guiding the present assessment is a newly conceived model, which resorts to organizational learning processes and outcomes to construct a two-by-two typology, and four possible stages of development were postulated. From the distribution of a sample of 88 elementary and secondary Taiwanese schools, a bipolar concentration of schools in the relatively unchanged conditions and advanced stages of organizational learning were found. This suggested a sharp contrast between schools that prefer status quo versus those that actively search for new directions in meeting the rising challenges. Further exploration of factors that promote organizational changes revealed that external, intra-organizational and, to a smaller extent, the contextual factors all play some part in organizational learning. Additional interviews with principals of schools located in differential stages of development clarify how their perception and mentality shape their schools’ development.
International Journal of Educational Management 17(6), pp.262-271