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A Teacher's Guide for Getting Serious About the System
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A Teacher's Guide for Getting Serious About the System



June 2012 | 96 pages | Corwin
The Working Systemically approach is a multidimensional process for school improvement focused on key components of the system that must be in place to support student achievement. In order to ensure that the improvement is sustained for the long term, the Working Systemically approach targets multiple levels of the system. By simultaneously addressing the components and competencies at multiple levels, the approach results in systemwide improvement that increases achievement for all students. Four key findings drive this work: Improvingástudent achievement requires a district to concentrate its efforts on aligning curriculum, instruction, and assessment to state standards Instead of trying to address every problem with a unique solution, work on the underlying issues that are impacting the system Focusáimprovement plans on activities that are small enough to be manageable but large enough to make a difference in student achievementLeaders at all levels of the system (including teacher leaders) need to support the selected focus of the improvement effort so that the resources of time, personnel, and energy are targeted on that focal pointIn short, sites that focused their attention on alignment and approached their improvement work systemically were more likely to show gains in student achievement. This guide is printed in two separate volumes. One volume provides a brief overview of what it means to work systemically, offers a brief rationale for a systemic approach based on research, and outlines the five phases in the process. The primary audience for this book is district and school staff, including teachers, who will be engaged in the improvement efforts. A second volume provides district and school leadership teams with the tools and resources they need to lead the systemic work.á
 
SEDL’s Working Systemically Approach: A Process Grounded in Research
 
The Working Systemically Approach: Levels, Components, and Competencies
 
Levels of the System
 
Components of the System
 
Competencies for Working Systemically
 
The Working Systemically Approach in Action
 
Working Systemically Phases
 
Phase I: Understanding Systemic Improvement
Study the Approach

 
Collect and Analyze Preliminary Data

 
Present the Approach at the School Level

 
Commit to Systemic Improvement

 
 
Phase II: Analyzing the System
Form the District and School Leadership Teams

 
Begin the Comprehensive Needs Assessment

 
Conduct a Gap Analysis (reference to System Examination Tool: Appendix 1)

 
Begin the Process at the School Level

 
Formulate Problem Statements

 
Describe the Ideal State

 
Review District Initiatives

 
Continue the Process at the School Level

 
 
Phase III: Planning Action
Investigate Research-Based Practices

 
Explore the Professional Teaching and Learning Cycle (PTLC)

 
Review Progress Made to Date and Existing Plan

 
Develop a District Improvement Plan (reference to Leadership Self-Assessment Tool: Appendix 2)

 
Formalize and Communicate the District Plan

 
Develop School Improvement Plans

 
 
Phase IV: Taking Action and Monitoring Progress
Implement and Monitor the Improvement Plans

 
Provide Leadership for the Improvement Work

 
Address Unique Challenges as They Arise

 
 
Phase V: Assessing and Reflecting on Outcomes
Analyze and Reflect on Evidence of Implementation and Impact

 
Decide on a Focus for Continuing the Improvement Work

 
Recognize Work, Progress, and Accomplishments

 
 
Getting Serious About the System: What It Takes

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ISBN: 9781452205120

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