Leaders of Learning: How District, School, and Classroom Leaders Improve Student Achievement

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2011-06-15
  • Publisher: Solution Tree

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For many years, coauthors Rick DuFour and Bob Marzano have been co-travelers on the journey to help educators improve their schools. As Rick has focused on bringing the professional learning community process to life in schools, he has relied heavily on Bob¿s vast research on effective teaching and effective leadership. Bob has come to the conclusion that the best environment for great teaching and leading is a powerful PLC. In Leaders of Learning: How District, School, and Classroom Leaders Improve Student Achievement, the authors have combined their passions into one book to articulate how effective leaders foster continuous improvement at the district, school, and classroom levels. Rick and Bob argue that no single person has all the knowledge, skills, and talent to lead a district, improve a school, or meet all the needs of every child in his or her classroom. They assert that it will take a collaborative effort and widely dispersed leadership to meet the challenges confronting schools. Leaders of Learning focuses on district leadership, principal leadership, and team leadership, as well as addressing how individual teachers can be most effective in leading their students by learning with their colleagues how to implement the most promising pedagogy in their classrooms. The first part of the book focuses on how district and school leaders create the conditions to support the collaborative culture of a professional learning community. In the second part, the authors turn their attention to the specific work that teachers undertake as members of PLCs.

Table of Contents

About the Authorsp. xiii
Introductionp. 1
School Improvement Means People Improvementp. 5
Denialp. 7
Failed Strategiesp. 11
Flawed Strategies Flow From Flawed Assumptionsp. 14
School Improvement Means People Improvementp. 15
Creating the Conditions for Continuous School Improvementp. 20
Three Big Ideas That Drive the PLC Processp. 22
Conclusionp. 25
The District's Role in Supporting the PLC Processp. 27
Effective District Leaders Both Direct and Empowerp. 28
Effective District Leaders Create a Common Languagep. 34
Effective District Leaders Monitor the PLC Process in Each School as They Develop the Capacity of Principals to Lead the Processp. 37
Effective Superintendents Limit Initiativesp. 40
Effective Superintendents Communicate Priorities Effectivelyp. 42
Conclusionp. 45
The Principal's Role in Leading a Professional Learning Communityp. 47
The Research on School Leadershipp. 47
A Tradition of Teacher Isolationp. 50
The Collaborative Team as a Catalyst for Shared Leadershipp. 56
Training Team Leadersp. 58
Principals as Capacity Buildersp. 60
Conclusionp. 62
Creating the Collaborative Culture of a Professional Learning Communityp. 65
Acknowledging the Challengep. 67
Difficult, but Doablep. 69
Reciprocal Accountability: The Key to Building Collective Capacityp. 70
Conclusionp. 86
Developing a Guaranteed and Viable Curriculump. 89
PLCs and a Guaranteed and Viable Curriculump. 93
Identifying the Nature of Objectivesp. 94
Identifying the Appropriate Grain Size of Objectivesp. 96
Identifying the Appropriate Number of Objectivesp. 105
Articulating Levels of Knowledgep. 111
Designing Proficiency Scalesp. 114
Conclusionp. 117
Ongoing Monitoring of Student Learningp. 119
Assessment in the Current Systemp. 120
A New Way to Design and Score Assessmentsp. 123
New Types of Assessmentsp. 129
SMART Goals Reconsideredp. 132
Common Assessments Reconsideredp. 132
Translating Scale Scores to Traditional Gradesp. 134
A New Report Cardp. 135
Conclusionp. 139
Ensuring Effective Instructionp. 141
Lesson Studyp. 142
Lesson Study Within a PLCp. 143
Observing Lessons in Actionp. 166
Conclusionp. 170
Responding When Kids Don't Learnp. 171
A Schoolwide Response to Students Who Do Not Learnp. 172
Response to Intervention: Is It the Solution?p. 175
Mistaken Approaches to Response to Interventionp. 176
Effective Systems of Interventionp. 180
Enrichment in a Professional Learning Communityp. 186
But the Schedule Won't Let Usp. 189
Conclusionp. 191
Leadership Is an Affair of the Heartp. 193
Leadership as a Love Affairp. 194
Leading by Examplep. 198
Effective Leaders Articulate a Clear, Compelling, and Focused Vision and Connect It to Others' Hopes and Dreamsp. 201
Effective Leaders Help Those They Lead Feel More Capable by Helping Them Become More Capablep. 204
Conclusionp. 208
References and Resourcesp. 209
Indexp. 227
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