Leadership, Poverty, and Kids William Parrett and Kathleen Budge William Parrett - director of the Center for School Improvement and Policy Studies and professor of education at Boise State University. Kathleen Budge - coordinator of the Leadership Development Program at Boise State University and assistant professor in the Curriculum, Instruction and Foundational Studies Department.
Leadership, Poverty, and Kids HOW ARE WE DOING? VALIDATECHALLENGE to IMPROVE
The World Has Changed TechnologyEconomicsDiversityPolicy
Economics Annual earnings of 25-34 year olds Annual earnings of 25-34 year olds H.S. Diploma Some College Associate BA Master’s Professional
Technology Computers everywhere, Laptops, Palms Flash Drives, I Pods, PlayStations, Wii Cell Phones, E-Mail, Text Messages Online Grade Books, Homework Websites ATMs, Blackberries, Industrial Robots Geek Squads, YouTube, Myspace, Facebook EBay, MapQuest…Digital everything What has changed in your life in the past 10 years?
How can we better connect student interest in technology…to learning and achievement?
New Educational Policy State Standards / Assessments Proficiency Goals Dissagregation of Data Achievement Gaps / AYP Teacher Quality Legislated “Pressures”
ALL students must succeed in school…period. …or live out their lives Unemployed, underemployed, or Unemployable In 2007…an education represents The ONLY door of opportunity… …the ULTIMATE Civil Right
So… How do schools close these gaps? What do they have in common?
Research on High Poverty / High Performing Schools
Spheres of Influence, Action, Core Values and Beliefs, Equally Worthy, Equitably Served Building Leadership Capacity Fostering Healthy, Safe, and Supportive Learning Contexts Focusing on Student and Professional Learning CARING relationships High Expectations Courage and Will Commitment to Action
1979 “How many effective schools would you have to see… …to be persuaded of the educability of poor children? If your answer is more than one, then I submit that you have reasons of your own for preferring to believe that basic pupil performance derives from family background instead of school response to family background… We can, whenever and wherever we choose, successfully teach all children whose schooling is of interest to us.” -- Ron Edmonds, 1979
Today in 2008… “We know what works in education. The research is prolific.” “Amazingly, then, the question today is not about what works, but about why we do not implement what we know works in all schools for all kids.”
Ensure Effective District and School Leadership Build Leadership Capacity
“Leadership is second only to classroom instruction among all school-related factors that contribute to what students learn at school.” Source: Leithwood, K., Seashore.K.L., Anderson, S. Wahlstrom, K., (2004). How Leadership Influences Student Learning.
It Takes Skill and Will Swift, dramatic improvement requires an encounter with the “brutal facts” – those awkward, unpleasant truths that organizations prefer not to address – or even talk about. M. Schmoker, A Charge for Change. American School Board Journal, April 2007, J. Collins, Good to Great, 2001.
Building Leadership Capacity Confront the Brutal Facts Promote a Vision of High Achievement for ALL Set Goals and Use Data Embed Professional Development Develop Teacher Leadership/Collaborative Relationships Prioritize Resources
Reorganize Time, Space, and Transitions Must Increase quality instruction time for low achieving students Must provide time for collaboration Must ensure successful transitions for every student (SLCs – FOCUS)
Foster Healthy, Safe, and Supportive Learning Contexts
Understand and Hold High Expectations for Poor and Culturally Diverse Students
College Prep Curriculum Focus on Reading / Vocabulary Summer Programs “We can’t ‘fix’ the poverty that surrounds our kids…but we can get them the skills they need to achieve and succeed in school…every one of them.”
College Graduates by Age 26 Young People from 60% High Income Families Young People from 7% Low Income Families
Understanding Poverty Poor Health Care / Nutrition Few Books/ Computers Limited Vocabulary High Mobility Externally Controlled Often Single Parent Unchallenging Summer Vacation
Research on Vocabulary Affluent Familes:2300 words/hour Blue Collar Families:1,200 words/hour Poverty Families:600 words / hour Bracy, 2000
Underachieving Students Living in Poverty Need… High Expectations Early Intervention Needs based “catchup” plans Intensive Reading / Math Instruction Extra Instructional Time Relevant Rigorous Well Targeted Curriculum Parent Education / Home Support Summer Programs …Nutrition/ Targeted Instruction, Acceleration / Enrichment Plans for Mobility / Transition/ Behavior Alternative Schools / Programs All of us need to stop making excuses!
Address Student Mobility… Access and Maintain Accurate Data Be ready –Departures – Counseling /Exit Interview –Arrivals – Welcome packets / Diagnostics/Appropriate Placements –Catch up – Tutoring / Extended DAY Build Relationships – Peers/ Parents Frequent Communication Address Transportation Issues Engage All Staff – School-wide Support
What at-risk children want at school more than anything else… …a caring relationship with an adult.
Engage Parents, Communities, and Schools to Work as Partners Home Visits Monthly Whole School/Community Gatherings Student Led Conferences / Report Card Conferencing (9 th and 10 th Grade)
It’s all about Relationships Engage parents and families in authentic decision making Communicate, communicate, communicate
Focusing on Student and Professional Learning Teach Reading Re-teach/Accelerate Extend Learning Ensure a Personal Connection “Basic skills are the foundation of all learning and nothing is as important as reading.”
Compelling Conclusions We must combat hopelessness… and instill in every child the self-confidence that they can achieve and succeed in school.
Any school can overcome the debilitating effects of poverty… …demographics do not equal destiny!
Every school can become a high performing school… We are a high performance diverse school.
TEACHERS MAKE THE DIFFERENCE! …They think … we can learn this!!