Presentation on theme: "Transforming School Culture: www.schoolofeducators.com."— Presentation transcript:
Transforming School Culture:
Culture is the most powerful source of leverage for bringing about change in a school – or any organization, for that matter. Thomas J. Sergiovanni
School Culture School culture is norms developed over time based on shared attitudes, values, beliefs, expectations, relationships, and traditions of a particular school that cause it to function or react as it does.
School Culture is often majority driven (staff), intangible, hard to describe, and difficult to positively impact, or change in a systemic way. The attitudes, beliefs, and values may often be hidden to those new to or outside of the school community. School Culture Cont
School Climate School Climate is the communication of its norms, beliefs, and values through various behaviors and interactions and their effect on others, with the primary focus being on students. School Climate is driven by and reflected in the daily interactions of staff, administration, students, support staff, and the outside community.
Climate is expressed in tangible ways, is more leadership driven, and responds more quickly to change. Climate is demonstrated through collegiality, communication, decision-making, trust, expectations, ideology, leadership, recognition, celebration, support, and experimentation. Climate should directly reflect the schools mission statement through its focus and actions.
School Culture is over a period of time…the history Climate is now, its the perceptions/emotions being evoked
Definition of Culture In short, Terrence Deal, author and professor at Vanderbilt University, explains, It is the way we do business here and clarifies what is important and what is not.
Group Activity The Hotel California
ACCIDENTAL vs INTENTIONAL CULTURE Accidental Culture Intentional Culture 1. Activities are based on assumptions. 1. Activities are research-based. 2. Academic goals deteriorates to a wish list. 2. Academic goals are credible. The focus is on results. 3. Mission and goals are ignored. 3. Mission and goals are used as a blue print for school improvement. 4. Decisions are dictated and developed by few. 4. Broad collaboration: decisions are widely shared
ACCIDENTAL vs INTENTIONAL CULTURE Accidental Culture Intentional Culture 1. Articulated Beliefs 1. Beliefs are tied to actions and behaviors. 2. Random Values2. Values tied to vision and mission 3. Connections are random3. Connections are constantly sought 4. Diversity is acknowledge4. Diversity is valued
Negativity in a school culture or climate is usually manifested in the attitudes and actions of school staff through: No or low expectations Little or no communication among stakeholders Resistance to change No ownership Little or no sense of community Disrespect/hostility widespread Low morale and distrust
Examples of Negativity through Dysfunctional Norms Dread coming to school Criticize those who are innovative Politics drive decision-making Do just enough to get by Judgmental/Critical of others motivation Fear reprisal Distrust colleagues or administration Me First Operate in a vacuum Adapted from Shaping School Culture: The Heart of Leadership (1998)
A Toxic School Culture Is full of Taters Dictators Commentators Agitators Spectators
Positive School Culture/Climate Mission IS about student and teacher learning Rich sense of history and purpose Core values of collegiality, performance, and improvement centered around quality, achievement, and learning for ALL students Positive and Proactive Approaches for staff and students
Positive School Culture/Climate Stories that celebrate successes and recognize heroines and heroes Physical Environment reflects pride and joy Widespread sense of respect and nurturing
Why Is School Culture Important? What research tells us: Positive learning can only take place in a positive culture. A healthy school culture will affect more student and teacher success than any other reform or school improvement effort currently being employed. -Gary Phillips
TRANSFORMING SCHOOL CULTURE
If you intend to introduce a change that is incompatible with the organizations culture, you have only three choices: modify the change to be more in line with the existing culture, alter the culture to be more in line with the proposed change, or prepare to fail. David Salisbury & Daryl Conner, 1994
Its not so much that were afraid of change, or so in love with the old ways, but its that place in between … its like being in between trapezes. Its Linus when his blanket is in the dryer. Theres nothing to hold on to. - Marilyn Ferguson
YOU MUST FIRST ASSESS YOUR CULTURE! TO IMPROVE YOUR CULTURE…
GROUP ACTIVITY SCHOOL CULTURE SURVEY
Four Steps in Creating a Truthful Culture Lead with questions, not with answers. Engage in dialogue and debate, not coercion. Conduct autopsies without blame. Build red flag mechanisms that turn information into information that cannot be ignored.
Reculturing versus Restructuring Changing The School Culture
STRUCTURE VS. CULTURE S TRUCTURE Day-To-Day Policies & Procedures School Rules C ULTURE Long-Term Beliefs, Expectations, and Habits
T O C HANGE Y OUR S CHOOLS C ULTURE Promote your mission, vision, values and goals. Bring your staff together to find best practices. Sustain the culture through communication. Persist. Confront problems.
What Do We Know About Effective Culture? Twelve Norms of School Culture Where People and Programs Improve CollegialityAppreciation and recognition ExperimentationCaring, celebration, humor High expectationsInvolvement in decision making Trust and confidenceProtection of whats important Tangible supportTraditions Reaching out to the knowledge bases Honest, open communication Good Seeds Grow in Strong Cultures by Saphier and King
A Final Thought Self-renewing school cultures are collaborative places where adults care about one another, share common goals and values, and have the skills and knowledge to plan together, solve problems together, and fight passionately but gracefully for ideas to improve instruction. -Robert Garmston & Bruce Wellman
Its difficult to change school culture, but remain optimistic
WE ARE ALL IN THIS BOAT TOGETHER
All I Need To Know, I Learned From Noahs Ark: Dont Miss The Boat Remember That We Are All In The Same Boat Plan Ahead: It was not Raining When Noah Built The Ark Stay Fit: When youre 600 years old someone may ask you to do something really big
All I Need To Know, I Learned From Noahs Ark: Dont Listen To Critics; Just Get On With The Job That Needs To Be Done. Build Your Future on high Ground. For Safety Travel In Pairs. Speed isnt always an advantage. The snails were on board with the cheetahs.
All I Need To Know, I Learned From Noahs Ark: When youre stressed, float a while. Remember the Ark was built by amateurs, and the titanic by professionals No matter the storm, when you are with the right people, theres always a rainbow waiting
A MOMENT OF CLARITY I learned that … I realized that … I was pleased that … I was not aware that…