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Public Sector Structural Change in K-12 Education: Part 1

Fall 2014 MBA Course

B8547-001: Public Sector Structural Change in K-12 Education: Part 1

W - Full Term, 08:30AM to 10:30AM
Location: On-Campus (Please see description)
Previous Terms Offered: Fall

Instructor: James Liebman

This course is cross-listed with the Law School, and provides an
exciting opportunity to immerse yourself in education reform policy and
practice, and to work on a consulting project that will help design a
performance-management strategy for a public school system. It will be
scheduled for a time convenient for students admitted to it. The class
will have students from other graduate schools at Columbia, with 6 seats
reserved for Columbia Business School students.

The course takes an interdisciplinary approach to understanding what
conceptual, structural and organizational changes are taking place in
public K-12 organizations, and teams will also work on a project for a
public-sector entity that is participating in these changes. Topics
covered include: institutional design, labor relations and
accountability; statistical and qualitative approaches to assessment,
diagnostic monitoring and the identification of effective practices;
horizontal (site-to-site) distribution of knowledge; tensions between
local autonomy and centrally enforced accountability, incentives and
learning as disciplining devices, rules and standards, supervision
versus facilitation as middle-management strategies, design and
implementation, and input- and outcomes-oriented conceptions of fairness
and success.

This class will be taught by James Liebman, the Simon H. Rifkind
Professor of Law at Columbia Law School, and former Chief Accountability
Officer New York City Department of Education.

Acceptance in the Public-Sector Structural Reform
Part 1 (fall, pre-requisite for Part 2) and Part 2 (spring) courses is
by application, with a follow up interview. If you are admitted to these
courses, you will be asked to commit to take both (and your grade in
the fall course will depend on completion of the spring course); these
will be added to the courses you will see in BOSS. To apply for these
courses, please email a resume and a short statement of interest (1 page
or less). Interviews will be scheduled for first year students in the
spring who wish to take these courses next academic year. The criteria
for selection is described in the syllabus.

If you have any questions, you may contact Professor James Liebman at


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