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From Survival to Sustainability: Leadership in GARF . Sharon Walpole University of Delaware. Reading First in Georgia is about Building Capacity for Leadership. State RF Regions and RESAs Coaches and Principals Teachers. CIERA’s Beat the Odds Study. The most effective schools had
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From Survival to Sustainability:Leadership in GARF Sharon Walpole University of Delaware
Reading First in Georgia is aboutBuilding Capacity for Leadership State RF Regions and RESAs Coaches and Principals Teachers
CIERA’s Beat the Odds Study The most effective schools had • Strong links to parents • Systematic internal assessment systems • Systems for communication and collaboration • Small-group interventions across the grades • Ongoing professional development None of these things is possible without strong leadership Taylor, Pearson, Clark, & Walpole, 2000
I review new sources of guidance for leaders Session Plan Regional coordinators use it to plan You reflect with your team You draft a needs-assessment
What does the literature say about the role of the principal in school improvement?
Michael Fullan, 2005 A person capable of participating in the reform of a system (a school nested in a district nested in a state) by interacting with and supporting the development of other leaders Or Maybe a Systems Thinker?
Or Maybe a Systems Thinker A person capable of participating in the reform of a system (a school nested in a district nested in a state) by interacting with and supporting the development of other leaders
Principals: In your leadership training, what leadership models were emphasized? Please take 10 minutes to discuss your leadership training with your LC.
The main mark of an effective principal is not just his or her impact on the bottom line of student achievement, but also on how many leaders he or she leaves behind who can go even further (Fullan, 2005, p. 31).
In GARF We need RF principals to be systems thinkers, training and empowering their literacy coaches to be leaders. Not generic leaders, but leaders in that particular RF principal’s school.
Fullan argues that effective leaders create positive energy
Think a minute In your own RF leadership role, what’s one way you can move from either a neutral or a consumer to a producer of energy?
When it comes to sustainability, each level above you helps or hinders (it is rarely neutral) (Fullan, 2005, p.65).
Think a minute Given your own place in our system, to what extent are you helping individuals in the level below you? What is one way that you can improve?
I have learned as a principal the importance of backing my LC up. Last year as a first year principal I was just trying to keep my head above water. To be perfectly honest, at the very beginning of this project I just thought, “That’s your department. You handle that,” and then I discovered that I couldn’t do that.
Georgia REA Experience Enter the Literacy Coach Perhaps an inexperienced leader? Perhaps leading a fairly complex set of changes in curriculum and assessment? Perhaps constantly negotiating his or her role at school?
I know what she has contributed to our language arts program just through the assistance she has provided teachers. I know that my assistant principal and I could not do that. We have 55 teachers in our school and 35 classrooms, 750 students. There’s no way that the two of us could provide the instructional support that the teachers need.
Let’s learn from our first cohort • How did principals in Georgia define the role of the literacy coach in building-level change? • How did partnership with an LC influence these principals’ own role?
What should your LC be? In your building, are procedures for addressing these particular school-level RF issues already firmly in place? Support your Empower your LC as mentor LC as director Yes? No?
How does partnership with an LC change a principal’s role? Changes school schedule, for instruction and for professional development Provides a professional development “loop” from outside the classroom to inside Changes the focus of administrative observation Changes the school climate Allows the principal to focus on instruction
Getting the information, having the coach, being in the classrooms, doing the observations, doing the modeling, and then coming back and watching teachers and letting them share ideas—that’s the only way to perpetuate change.
I very much like the instructional part of my job and this has made me go back to what it was I wanted to do when I started being a principal. It has, really, it has. I mean it’s true. I’m in the classrooms every day.
North Central Regional Educational Laboratory (NCREL) http://www.ncrel.org/rf/leadership/leaderguide.htm
What can Principals do in RF? Build RF in your building! • Provide a vision • Set priorities • Create ownership • Remove barriers • Foster peer support • Model the behavior you want
Right now to me we have the best reading program that any school could have. And that comes from here, from my heart.
Set up the system for classroom instruction • Continue to monitor and direct the use of commercial materials • Set and protect your reading block • Make sure that every teacher has what he/she needs to teach • Make goals for the building • Monitor through analyzing assessments and through observing instruction
I’ve noticed that the dialogue, the interaction, the level of discussion is much more insightful and that’s very promising to me because we keep pulling ourselves back to the research—what’s worked? what’s going to work with our kids?
Set up the system for support • Maintain an “every classroom” focus • Walk through or observe every day • Direct the coach to give extra support to teachers you notice are struggling • Make time and provide resources for training in new programs • Meet regularly with your Coach
Education is based on what you expect anyway, and if you expect children to do well, they’re going to do well for you. If you just say, well these kids can’t do this, they’re never going to do it. So it’s all a matter of what you expect, and I expect my teachers to continue [teaching our reading program]. I will be in those rooms. Where’s your whole group? Where is your read-aloud? Where are these small groups?
Be active in the professional development process in your building • Keep non-aligned pd out! • Participate in as many pd sessions as possible • Help teachers network with one another and with teachers from other schools • Be specific about expectations for implementation
Even this week it’s really impressed me that we really cannot observe that which we don’t understand. You really need to know what you’re looking for and you need to have a deeper appreciation of it. So my role has changed in that I feel I need to be better educated in the research. My key role is to verify. Check on fidelity. You got a plan. You got some people to help you to implement that plan. I see my chief job as ensuring fidelity to whomever is working in the plan. I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing, coach is doing what she’s supposed to be doing, teachers are doing what they’re supposed to be doing. I call that fidelity.
Be active in assessing progress • Use school-level assessment data to identify problems in your curriculum • Use classroom-level data to identify teachers who are struggling and to provide them extra support • Use individual data to establish and reestablish your intervention groups
It’s basically an informed school now, where they know what they’re doing. One of our parents said this school is a Reading School. I think that’s what we want, if a parent can say our school is a Reading School.
Think a minute You are the leader of this change effort. Do you want to survive it or sustain it?
The way we teach reading will not change, and we’ll continue. We’ve learned that there is so much out there to learn, and so we’ll continue to learn. I think that we’ve become -- you’ve heard the phrase -- life-long learners. And so we’ll continue to search the research and not just go by what textbook companies tell us, which is what we’ve always done in the past. I think the reading program will continue to grow in the direction of SBRR.