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K-12 Education Resources

The latest on all student-centered models, leadership development, strategic planning, teacher retention, and all things innovation in K-12 education. We answer questions before you think to ask them.

Blog Feature

District Leadership  |  Teacher Retention

Prioritizing Teachers' Growth and Passions: Creating a Sustainable and Engaged Teaching Team

The constantly evolving education landscape makes nurturing educators' development a crucial priority. The success of schools and districts depends on designing successful, meaningful, and innovative professional development experiences that ignite teachers' passion for continuous improvement.

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Blog Feature

District Leadership  |  Teacher Retention

Increasing Teacher Agency Leads to Better Decisions & Happier Teachers

As students across the county prepare for the start of a new school year, conversations about how to address our national teacher shortage are becoming more frequent and urgent. Many educators are calling for this conversation to be rebranded as a “teacher walkout” to highlight that teachers are leaving the field as a way to protest a system not built to empower them as decision-makers and innovators. This shift in language – from “teacher shortage” to “teacher walkout” – illuminates a key design element that districts can leverage proactively to respond to retention challenges: teacher agency.

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District Leadership  |  Education Elements  |  School Leadership  |  Strategic Planning

3 Key Strategies to Improve School Performance

Schools across the country work tirelessly to provide positive educational experiences for their students, staff, and the larger community. Yet, there are times when they fall short of this goal. They may experience high teacher turnover, a poor school climate, and low student achievement, just to name a few challenges. In our work, we see that with the right support systems in place, we can collectively improve school performance and meet the needs of students and educators. Here are three valuable strategies you can leverage to achieve transformative improvements:

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District Leadership  |  Education Elements  |  School Leadership  |  Strategic Planning

Addressing Teacher Burnout, Post-Pandemic Learning Environments, and Public Mistrust through Strategic Planning

Last year, I relocated to my home state of Tennessee from New York City, and I had to secure a car for the first time in many years. As luck would have it, my first winter back in Tennessee was one of the state's coldest on record. Just enough snow fell in late December to make driving, especially up my steep driveway, a daunting experience. As I slowly crept up the hill toward my house, my tires spun in place. Decisions needed to be made. Would it make sense to keep spinning my tires in place hoping to gain enough traction to move forward, or would it be better to stop, reflect, and rethink my approach? It was clear that what I was doing wasn't working. I took my foot off of the accelerator, stopped the car, reversed slightly, and attempted a different path on the grass adjacent to the driveway. In a few moments, I was safely parked in my house’s garage. Sometimes we need to pause and create new strategies when the ones we have in place are not working. This applies to school districts today who are facing very challenging circumstances with a record number of educators leaving the profession, math and reading levels at a twenty-year low, and public trust in education eroding.

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Blog Feature

District Leadership  |  Education Elements  |  School Leadership  |  Social and Emotional Learning

Social Emotional Learning: 5 strategies for success

As we reflect on the past school year and prepare for next year, it is helpful to evaluate the Social Emotional Learning (SEL) practices and how they served to shape the culture of learning and development in your schools. According to the CASEL’s (the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning ) framework, “SEL is the process through which all young people and adults acquire and apply the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to develop healthy identities, manage emotions and achieve personal and collective goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain supportive relationships, and make responsible and caring decisions." SEL “advances educational equity [and] can help address various forms of inequity and empower young people and adults to co-create thriving schools and contribute to safe, healthy, and just communities.”

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District Leadership  |  Education Elements  |  School Leadership  |  Strategic Planning

The “Victory Points” of Strategic Planning: Three Quick Tips

One of my family’s favorite pastimes is playing the board game The Settlers of Catan. The winner is the first player to earn ten victory points. There are a variety of ways to earn victory points, which means that winning the game is a matter of both luck and strategy. The last time I played Catan, I started the game “lucky” by rolling the highest number and getting to place my settlements first. However, my husband’s strategy of waiting until the end of the game to build the “longest road” turned out to be more fruitful than my strategy of obtaining a two-for-one lumber port to gain the resources that I needed. (If none of this makes any sense to you, go play the game after you finish reading this blog post.)

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