chapter  1
Struggling for inclusion: a case study of students as reform partners ELENAM . S I LVA
ByA case study of students as reform partners Elena M. Silva
Pages 20

A recent wave of school reform literature provides an extensive discourse on ways to restructure, reorganize, and reassess the American high school (Carlson, 1996; Oakes et al., 2000; Lee and Smith, 2001). Local, state and national reform agendas emphasize school reform initiatives that promote principles of shared decision-making, democratic governance, and studentcentered change.1 In response to this trend, school administrators are increasingly sanctioning the involvement of teachers, parents, and students in school change efforts. Yet while these calls for greater collaborative inquiry and action ostensibly include students and center on student learning and achievement, students themselves are rarely asked to participate in reform decision-making, development or implementation. To date, there is little evidence of student voice and participation within the increasing number of school reform efforts that claim their involvement (Kaba, 2000; Fielding, 2001). Consequently, students are treated as recipients of the educational product rather than partners in the educational process and reforms come and go without attention to the diverse opinions, perspectives and experiences of students.