4622 Chapters
Medium 9781936764662

Chapter 1 Wanted: Leaders at Every Level

Williams, Kenneth C. Solution Tree Press ePub

Leaders strike the match for schoolwide cultural change; staff fan the flames.

—KENNETH C. WILLIAMS

Our work with schools has illuminated one important point about what it takes to create schoolwide cultural change: leadership is not a solo act. A school’s transition to a PLC requires leadership at all levels. A school leader can bring a topic to the forefront, frame a discussion, facilitate healthy, productive conflict, and provide the resources and support to move forward with the initiative. But school leaders alone cannot effect the sustained cultural change required to become a PLC. Everyone should take the opportunity to be a leader in a PLC at some point—whether formally or informally. Once the staff have built shared knowledge on how to create a school aligned with their core purpose and have established collective commitments to bring that school into being, then it becomes everyone’s responsibility to protect and nurture the culture.

Early in his leadership career, Ken made the mistake of believing that his energy, enthusiasm, passion, and focus would be enough to turn the school he inherited around. It didn’t take him long to realize that if he didn’t change, he would be alone in his endeavor. Over time, he began to see that it was the staff members’ encouragement to each other to commit to and deeply invest in the transformation that fanned the flames of their PLC. This investment shows that a culture is changing and moving in the right direction. Every single person in your organization has the potential to influence others. Sometimes this influence is overt, and other times it’s subtle. People are leaders when they decide to become leaders and receive the opportunity to lead. The architects of the PLC model, DuFour, DuFour, and Eaker, emphasize the importance of building effective leadership at all levels in a PLC (DuFour et al., 2008, 2010a).

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Medium 9781475819557

Editorial: Prepare and Inspire Teachers—Whither STEM Literacy in the Preparation of Teachers?

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

PATRICK M. JENLINK

STEM literacy is an interdisciplinary area of study that bridges the four areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. STEM literacy does not simply mean achieving literacy in these four strands or silos. Consequently, a STEM classroom shifts students away from learning discrete bits and pieces of phenomenon and rote procedures and toward having investigating and questioning the interrelated facets of the world.

—National Governors Association (2007, p. 7)

In the 2010 report to the president titled Prepare and Inspire: K–12 Education in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) for America’s Future, the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (2010) advanced the need for a two-pronged strategy for transforming K–12 education. The strategy stated the need to prepare students so that they have a strong foundation in STEM subjects and are able to use this knowledge in their personal and professional lives.

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Medium 9780253008152

17 Shaping U.S.-Based Activism toward Africa: The Role of a Mix of Critical Pedagogies \ Amy C. Finnegan

Edited by Brandon D Lundy and Solomon N Indiana University Press ePub

An influx of American students traveling to study or volunteer in Africa and other regions of the global South (Grusky 2000; Panosian and Coates 2006; Parker and Dautoff 2007; Roberts 2006), the success of several Hollywood films set in Africa (e.g., Blood Diamond [Zwick 2006], The Constant Gardner [Meirelles 2005], Hotel Rwanda [George 2005], and The Last King of Scotland [Macdonald 2006]), and celebrity philanthropy performed for Africa-related causes by Bono, Angelina Jolie, and Oprah Winfrey (Bono 2007; Z. Magubane 2007, 2008), all have contributed to a notable increase in young Americans’ interest in addressing social problems in Africa in the past decade. Yet, uncritically performed, activism to address “problems in Africa” can entrench essentialized identities, serve as an escape from examining and addressing social problems closer to home or those issues that may directly implicate Americans, and lead to a narrow understanding of social change that does not take into account the efforts of African activists.

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Medium 9781475828931

Sources of Systems Thinking in School Leadership

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers ePub

Haim Shaked

Chen Schechter

Sources of Systems Thinking in School Leadership

Address correspondence to Dr. Haim Shaked, Orot Israel Academic College, 3 Steinman Street, PO Box 1106, Rehovot 7611002, Israel. Tel: 972-52-2366-952. E-mail: haim.shaked2@gmail.com

ABSTRACT: Systems thinking, a framework for seeing the whole, is an effective means of dealing with real-world problems. This study explored the sources of systems thinking in school leadership. Qualitative data were collected via 82 semistructured interviews and 6 focus groups, among pre-service principals, novice principals and experienced principals. Data analysis included four stages: condensing, coding, categorizing, and theorizing. The analysis yielded four sources of systems thinking in school leadership: (1) managerial experience, (2) role model, (3) academic study, and (4) natural tendency. The findings expand limited existing knowledge about systems thinking in school leadership, and may assist in establishing ways to enhancing and accelerating the development of systems thinking among prospective and active school principals.

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Medium 9781936764709

Chapter 7: A Reporting System for Modern Learning

Jay McTighe Solution Tree Press ePub

By following the backward design processes in this book, we should now have a well-aligned, mission-driven system with a focus on impacts. This focus should guide our curriculum mapping from a macro level to a micro level and align all of our assessments so they provide data to show student performance and growth in areas related to our impacts. Now we are ready to draw our work together in a manner that satisfies our original goal—to enact our vision and mission in a way that is demonstrated through student performance.

Throughout this book, we have described the important inputs of constructing a system for various outputs (curriculum, assessment, instruction, reporting, and other supportive structures), all of which are aligned with our stated impacts. It is worth pausing for a moment to retrace our journey and reiterate the major inputs that have gotten us to this stage.

1. Creating a compelling, futures-focused vision for schooling

2. Developing a mission that brings this vision to life by specifying desired impacts—the long-term transfer goals that we seek in student performance

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