Degree Name

Education Specialist (EdS)

Semester of Degree Completion


Thesis Director

Robert V. Shuff


This project reflects the concern for maintaining and improving the quality of educational programs in the region to be comprised of Clark, Coles, Cumberland, Moultrie, Edgar, and Shelby Counties.

The establishing of this region of six counties was brought about by a change in the organization and structure of the Illinois State Education Agency. A State Board of Education was established and began a system reorganization which tended to decentralize the state agency into regional area service units. In Illinois, through the elected superintendent-leaders, the kind, quality, and extent of services provided by the Regional Offices of Education have varied greatly. Limitations upon services such offices could provide have been imposed by legislative action and by funding. Many regional superintendents have actively studied their roles and responsibilities as they have endeavored to serve as an arm of the state education agency. In addition, many regional superintendents have been concerned with and involved in procedures made necessary by state law, which mandated reorganization of smaller regions into larger ones. Thus, concerns for providing services and programs have been complicated by legal, financial, social, and organizational requirements and pressures.

With the merging of the six counties of Clark, Coles, Cumberland, Moultrie, Edgar, and Shelby, there is a critical need to assess the feasible services that the region could perform. Such assessment is accomplished by this project. The region assessed involves 27 school districts, 84 school buildings, 3,103 square miles, 1,684 teachers, a population of 141,246, and a school population of 27,482.

Included in the assessment are a list of the participants, the need for the project, an introduction to the counties involved, the powers and duties of the state school board, the powers and duties of the superintendent of an educational service region, the procedure used in conducting the assessment, the questionnaire, a report of the consultative session, the statistical results of the questionnaire, an interpretation of the results of the questionnaire, and recommendations resulting from the assessment. Steps taken to secure responses to some of the needs expressed are outlined.

The project concluded with the assertion that there must be concerted efforts to implement some of the needs expressed in the assessment if the Regional School Office is to continue to fulfill the vital, necessary role it now has in our educational system.