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From Survival to Sustainability: Leadership in GARF Sharon Walpole University of Delaware.

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Presentation on theme: "From Survival to Sustainability: Leadership in GARF Sharon Walpole University of Delaware."— Presentation transcript:

1 From Survival to Sustainability: Leadership in GARF Sharon Walpole University of Delaware

2 Reading First in Georgia is about Building Capacity for Leadership State RF Regions and RESAs Coaches and Principals Teachers

3 Taylor, Pearson, Clark, & Walpole, 2000 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

4 I review new sources of guidance for leaders You reflect with your team You draft a needs- assessment Regional coordinators use it to plan Session Plan

5 TimeCollaboration Listen, think, talk, write during the morning (And we’ll have a break) Questions to think about, ideas to talk about, planning sheets to leave for regional coaches

6 Sources of Guidance Leadership in School Improvement Georgia REA Experience Recent RF Guidance

7 What does the literature say about the role of the principal in school improvement? Instructional Leader Collaborative Leader Transformational Leader Managing, guiding curriculum and instruction directly Creating a system for shared decision- making Both leading directly and sharing decision- making

8 Or Maybe a Systems Thinker? 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

9 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 School District State

10 Principals: In your leadership training, what leadership models were emphasized? Please take 10 minutes to discuss your leadership training with your LC.

11 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).

12 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.

13 Task #1 LEA RepsPrincipalsLiteracy Coaches How have you supported your principal’s growth as a leader for RF? How have you supported your LC’s growth as a leader for RF? What is one specific need you still have in becoming a stronger leader?

14 Fullan argues that effective leaders create positive energy

15 Energy Creators Act enthusiastic, positive Think critically, creatively, and imaginatively Help others to think and do Are leaders at all levels Are reflective and honest about their own work Always strive to do better

16 Energy NeutralsEnergy Consumers Are competent Are task-oriented Are good at keeping things working Don’t like others to reflect on their work Can improve on their own Are negative Don’t like change, block change Take up other people’s time Don’t feel good about their work Won’t, can’t reflect on their own practice Don’t seem to want to improve

17 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?

18 When it comes to sustainability, each level above you helps or hinders (it is rarely neutral) (Fullan, 2005, p.65). State District Principal Literacy Coach Teacher

19 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?

20 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.

21 Task #2 LEA RepsPrincipalsLiteracy Coaches How can you increase your support to principals? How can you increase your support to your Literacy Coach? How can you increase your support to your teachers?

22 Sources of Guidance Leadership in School Improvement Georgia REA Experience Recent RF Guidance

23 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?

24 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.

25 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?

26 What is a Literacy Coach? Mentor (n=6)Director (n=8) Classroom-level focus –Relationships –Modeling –Observing –Differentiated support School-level focus –Vision –Scheduling –Managing –Differentiated support Modeling Observing

27 What should your LC be? In your building, are procedures for addressing these particular school-level RF issues already firmly in place? Support yourEmpower your LC as mentorLC as director Yes?No?

28 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

29 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.

30 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.

31 Task #3 LEA RepsPrincipalsLiteracy Coaches How can you provide additional support to your principals and coaches in defining their roles? Do you want your LC to be mentor or director? How can you help? To what extent have you been defining your role as mentor or director?

32 Sources of Guidance Leadership in School Improvement Georgia REA Experience Recent RF Guidance

33 North Central Regional Educational Laboratory (NCREL)

34 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

35 Right now to me we have the best reading program that any school could have. And that comes from here, from my heart.

36 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

37 Task #4 What are the strengths and weaknesses of your system for classroom instruction? What is one thing that each of you can do to improve it?

38 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?

39 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

40 Task #5 What are the strengths and weaknesses of your system for support? What is one thing that each of you can do to improve it?

41 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?

42 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

43 Task #6 What are the strengths and weaknesses of your system for professional development? What is one thing that each of you can do to improve it?

44 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.

45 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

46 Task #7 What are the strengths and weaknesses of your system for assessing progress? What is one thing that each of you can do to improve it?

47 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.

48 Think a minute You are the leader of this change effort. Do you want to survive it or sustain it?

49 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.


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