Educational systems are complex. The ‘Wicked Problems’ nature of the challenges in educational systems are largely due to the heavily intertwined systems of structure and hierarchy. Systems and organizational theorists refer to the degrees of connectedness within the systems as ‘loose’ or ‘tight’ coupling. These various degrees of coupling between federal and state level bureaucracies, administrators, teachers, and other education groups such as teachers unions, parent organizations, etc. create conflict or cohesiveness depending up on the particular motivations of each group and the degree to which one’s vision aligns with another.
There really are no true boundaries to the educational system. As with anything, the further one moves from the nucleus of activity, the less direct the influence on the activity itself. In the case of educational systems, one might consider the nucleus of activity as the classroom. Yet, the classroom activity is influenced by building level, district, state and federal level actors. As well, the general trends of society and cultures, events of the world, and technology affect what happens in the classroom as well.