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Where Innovation Is Tradition Getting Schools Ready for College and Career Readiness Gary R Galluzzo George Mason University.

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Presentation on theme: "Where Innovation Is Tradition Getting Schools Ready for College and Career Readiness Gary R Galluzzo George Mason University."— Presentation transcript:

1 Where Innovation Is Tradition Getting Schools Ready for College and Career Readiness Gary R Galluzzo George Mason University

2 Where Innovation Is Tradition Anyone can stand up here and make an argument for change in the nations schools He/She can use international data; national data; state data, and even school-level data to remind us what we already know, in many instances Id like to make a few points along these lines, but then devote the remainder of my time outlining what were learning from schools that turn themselves around

3 Where Innovation Is Tradition But first… In order to improve public education in America, some people think the focus should be on reforming the existing public school system. Others believe the focus should be on finding an alternative to the existing public school system. Which approach do you think is preferable? (Phi Delta Kappa/Gallup Annual Survey, 2002-2007) A.Reforming the existing system B.Finding an alternative system C.Dont know 3

4 Where Innovation Is Tradition Goals, we love goals! By the year 2000, 1.All children in America will start school ready to learn. 2.The high school graduation rate will increase to at least 90 percent. 3. United States students will be first in the world in mathematics and science achievement. 4. Every adult American will be literate and will possess the knowledge and skills necessary to compete in a global economy and exercise the rights and responsibilities of citizenship

5 Where Innovation Is Tradition Its accomplishing them that proves so challenging 5

6 Where Innovation Is Tradition The Solution? Accountability Elementary and Secondary Education (ESEA) Act of 1965 (Johnson) A Nation at Risk (1983) (Reagan) A Nation Prepared (1986) (Governors) White House Education Summit/Goals 2000 (1989) (G.H.W. Bush) National Assessment (1993) (Clinton) National Commission on Teaching and Americas Future (1996; 2000) (Clinton) No Child Left Behind (2001) (G.W. Bush) Race to the Top (2009-2010) (Obama) President Obamas Blueprint (college and career ready goal) (Voluntary) Common Core Standards (college and career ready standards) 6

7 Where Innovation Is Tradition US and the World PIRLS Literacy (Grade 4): 8 th in the world out of 52 TIMSS Math (Grade 4): 15 th of 42 TIMSS Math (Grade 8): 23 rd of 33 TIMSS Science (Grade 4): 10 th of 47 TIMSS Science (Grade 8): 23 rd of 33 As our children become older, they perform less well over previous test years. 7

8 Where Innovation Is Tradition US Graduation Rates The rates for other groups were: Asian/Pacific Islander: 91.8% White: 82.0% Hispanic: 65.9% American Indian/Alaska Native: 64.8% African-American/Black: 63.5% Stillwell, R., Sable, J., & Plotts, C. (2011). Public School Graduates and Dropouts From the Common Core of Data: School Year 2008–09: First Look. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education. 8

9 Where Innovation Is Tradition Highest Educational Attainment (age 25 and over (U.S. Census, 2012)) Education level Percentage High school graduate87.65% Some college57.28% Associate's and/or Bachelor's degree 40.58% Bachelor's degree30.94% Master's degree8.05% Doctorate or professional degree 3.07%

10 Where Innovation Is Tradition Salaries, Employment by Degree

11 Where Innovation Is Tradition College Ready? On the ACT Readiness Benchmark on its 2012 tests: English: 67% of all ACT-tested high school graduates met this benchmark Reading: 52% Mathematics: 46% Science: 31% All 4 subjects: 25% 11

12 Where Innovation Is Tradition Tweak or Start over? In order to improve public education in America, some people think the focus should be on reforming the existing public school system. Others believe the focus should be on finding an alternative to the existing public school system. Which approach do you think is preferable? (Phi Delta Kappa/Gallup Annual Survey, 2002-2007) National No Children Public School Totals In School Parents 07 06 05 07 06 05 07 06 05 % % % % % % % % % Reforming existing system 72 71 68 75 72 67 68 69 72 Finding alternative system 26 24 23 24 23 23 29 25 22 Dont know 2 5 9 1 5 10 3 6 6 National No Children Public School Totals In School Parents 04 03 02 04 03 02 04 03 02 % % % % % % % % % Reforming existing system 66 73 69 63 73 69 72 73 69 Finding alternative system 26 25 27 28 24 26 21 25 27 Dont know 8 2 4 9 3 5 7 2 4

13 Where Innovation Is Tradition And this is educations challenge The New Goal?: Raising the knowledge, skills, and abilities for all students, while narrowing achievement gaps simultaneously for college and career readiness Weve never done this before in our nation And so far, the school, rather than the teacher or the student, is the unit of analysis

14 Where Innovation Is Tradition Reasons, Factors, or Excuses? 14

15 Where Innovation Is Tradition Coleman Report, 1966 Equality of Educational Opportunity Sought to determine whether school funding was unequal across schools Specifically, whether African-American childrens schools received less funding that white childrens schools… …and whether these funding differences had effects on student learning Federal distrust of local school districts and how they allocate funds (by zip codes)

16 Where Innovation Is Tradition What he found The differences in funding werent all that great Per pupil expenditures did not seem to indicate unequal treatment based upon race or class However… The relative equality of funding was not generating an equality of outcomes

17 Where Innovation Is Tradition Inequalities imposed Other things were getting in the way of equal student outcome Mothers level of education Fathers income (family SES) Number of books and magazines in the home Outside factors accounted for as much as 90% of the variance in student achievement

18 Where Innovation Is Tradition James Coleman, 1966 1966: Schools bring little influence to bear on a child's achievement that is independent of his background and general social context; and that this very lack of an independent effect means that the inequalities imposed on children by their home, neighborhood, and peer environment are carried along to become the inequalities with which they confront adult life at the end of school. (p. 325)

19 Where Innovation Is Tradition James Coleman, 1987 1987: As the social capital in the home and neighborhood shrinks, school achievement and other growth will not be increased by replacing these resources with more school-like resources that is, those that produce opportunities, demands, and rewards but by replacing them with resources which produce attitudes, efforts, and conception of selfthat is, those qualities that interact with the ones provided by the school. (p. 38)

20 Where Innovation Is Tradition James Coleman, 1987 Rephrased As the resources available to any child in any neighborhood decline/disappear, schools and their history of lessons, assignments/tests, and grades will not help those students who need the soft skills such as the importance of hope, the resilience to get back up, and learning the power of ones capacities and how to trust them, which all correlate with achievement in school.

21 Where Innovation Is Tradition Our Process Challenges? For practitioners: turning excuses into reasons For researchers: turning reasons into factors For leaders: leading professionals instead of telling employees…and not waiting for the last person to agree Or… Doing our best to seize this goal of college and career readiness and accomplishing it 21

22 Where Innovation Is Tradition So how do we get there? Eight Attributes of School Change 1.Client- centered 2.Identifiable curricular commitments 3.Standards/Expectations 4.Alignment of assessments and instruction with those standards 5.Regular accountability 6.Data-based changes to teaching and the school 7.Parent Outreach/Home Inreach 8.Substantive, focused professional development

23 Where Innovation Is Tradition 1.Client-centered Who walks into this school every morning? What do they bring with them? What are they lacking outside of school? What are the cultures in which they are being raised? What does that mean for our school and what we do here? Who are we/who am I to teach these children? Do we/do I have what these children need?

24 Where Innovation Is Tradition 2. Identifiable Curricular Commitments For what fundamental values does my school stand? Are they known to all? Adopted by all? The school stands for something, e.g. Mastery of basic skills; Critical thinking; Career-readiness; Creativity; Perpetuation of democracy; Social skills; Personal development (Colemans soft skills), etc. In a sense, this is the foundation for a social contract NB: It could be all of these, but the more a school has the greater the challenge will be during implementation.

25 Where Innovation Is Tradition 3. Standards for Performance What do we want these children to know and be able to do? What do we want this school to accomplish with these students, with a keen eye on what these particular students need from us and from the curriculum? What are the standards to which we will hold them? Are they clear? Challenging? Achievable? Can they be reliably measured such that they render valid judgments? (I hope you can start to see why a clearly understood set of commitments is so important; the sharper the focus, the easier it should be to conduct evaluations.)

26 Where Innovation Is Tradition 4. Alignment of Assessment and Instruction with those Standards Now that we know what we expect of our students… What are the best assessments for these standards? –Homemade? Off-the-shelf? Performances? A hybrid? What are the best instructional arrangements for our students to accomplish them? –Graded? Ungraded? Individual contract? Class size caps? What are the most appropriate materials? What are the best (core) instructional strategies for teaching to our standards? –Direct teaching? Problem-based? Apprenticeships? Others?

27 Where Innovation Is Tradition 5. Regular Accountability (transparency) So, how are we doing on our commitments? Are all of our curricular commitments reported, including those soft skills? Can anyone find out how well we are accomplishing our goals? Are our data clear and meaningful in the marketplace? Are trends evident?

28 Where Innovation Is Tradition 6. Data-based Changes Once the data are collected and analyzed, are they used for school improvement? What are the processes for deciding what changes will be made? Who decides? Is the evaluation adjusted to reflect these changes?

29 Where Innovation Is Tradition 7. Parent Outreach/HomeInreach Is the school connecting parents to their childrens education? To the school? Would parents report that they feel welcomed into the school? Are arrangements made for parents for whom getting to school proves a challenge? Does the curriculum go home? E.g. family math; reading at home, Dads in school, etc.

30 Where Innovation Is Tradition 8. Substantive, Focused Professional Development Once we address the foregoing, we can begin to think about high quality professional development run by and for the teachers: Is there evidence that teacher development is a respected priority of the school? Does the professional development support the schools commitments (substantive and focused)? Are teachers learning from other teachers through the quality of their work? Implementers must be seen as partners

31 Where Innovation Is Tradition Building Positive Mindsets 1.Ownership: its my/our problem. I own it, too. 2.Confidence: fearless reaching out and talking about the problem 3.Collaboration/Community: the ability to become part of a team to address the problem 4.A sense of empowerment: leadership support to allow the risk-taking that is often necessary to venture out and innovate 5.Activism and Patience: the implementation of a plan 1.Action research; PLCs; goals-focused;

32 Where Innovation Is Tradition What I think Im saying… 1. All reform is local; each school is its own culture; building by building As such, there is no silver bullet program of reform –Beware the salesperson Reform is also hard, collaborative work that extends beyond the school day, which suggests ownership matters and celebrating accomplishments matters Accomplishing reform is a process of locally managed continuous improvement based in core values, assessment, alignment, and evidence

33 Where Innovation Is Tradition What I think Im saying… 2. The school as a school of thought Curricular commitments are that covenant around which professional practice and professional development is based The covenant should provide for an atmosphere of openness and honesty in discussing the school and how well it is reaching its students and accomplishing its goals. –Some teachers may be teaching in the wrong school…but we dont seem to like thinking like that. Fit matters!

34 Where Innovation Is Tradition Data Matter 3. Things that are measured at least have a chance of being improved Without a model of goals, processes, and outcomes, we will continue to revisit the external policy solutions, and well be back here in 10 years having the same conversation.

35 Where Innovation Is Tradition And last… If we see reform as conducted locally, building- by-building, with each building on its own learning journey (becoming a school of thought that moves to the margins) attending to these eight attributes, I think we can transform some schools into places that find a way to reach more students.

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