The Dragon in School Backyards: The Influence of Mandated Testing on School Contexts and Educators Narrative Knowing Academic Article uri icon


  • Researched in the narrative inquiry tradition, this article examines the influence of state-mandated accountability testing on Eagle High School's dramatically shifting context and the embodied knowledge held and expressed by principal, Henry Richards, and the Eagle teachers. Through carefully unpacking Richards's dragon in school backyards metaphor, the way the prevailing state accountability system shaped and continues to shape the school's development becomes revealed. The inquiry raises serious questions about the relationships between and among curriculum, instruction, and standardized testing for accountability purposes and what educators are asked and required to do in the pursuit of educational excellence as defined by policy makers.

published proceedings

  • Teachers College Record: The Voice of Scholarship in Education

author list (cited authors)

  • Craig, C. J.

citation count

  • 12

complete list of authors

  • Craig, Cheryl J

publication date

  • June 2004