The Keys to Effective Schools: Educational Reform as Continuous Improvement

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Edited by: Willis D. Hawley

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    Introduction to the Second Edition

    The National Education Association (NEA) believes that great public schools are a basic right for every child. And we know that when the people who work in our nation's public schools are treated as professionals, and given the support and tools they need to succeed, magical things can happen for our children.

    These are the guiding principles that led to NEAs development of the Keys to Excellence for Your Schools (KEYS) Initiative. This high-quality tool allows educators to measure the conditions and climate in their schools to support effective teaching and learning and improve student achievement. In order to more fully describe the conditions a school needs to have in place for students to achieve at the highest levels, NEA proudly presents The Keys to Effective Schools.

    The contributors to this volume include many of the most respected education researchers in the country. Their expertise is well established—they have spent countless hours in public schools, they understand how schools operate, and they value the point of view of school employees. They offer practical insight and wisdom, based on the philosophy that quality schools are created and sustained by those who work in them.

    We hope you will gain many benefits from having this book as a resource.

    Sincerely
    RegWeaver, President National Education Association

    Preface: The Problem of Continuous School Improvement

    For decades, a series of cyclical reform efforts have been fueled by doomsday criticism and reports, followed by an intensive search for workable solutions. In most schools, innovations tend to appear and disappear with predictable regularity. Few reform initiatives are systemic, and they result in short-run gains rather than building a capacity for continuous improvement.

    Increasingly, educational researchers and policy analysts agree that the organizational structures and cultures of schools can either enhance or hinder their effectiveness. There is growing recognition that quality teaching and conditions that support it, such as supportive leadership that builds learning communities within schools and communities, evidence-based decision making focused on student learning, and collaborative problem solving and action, are essential foundations for continuous school improvement.

    This book offers a series of essays by prominent researchers that identify the rationale for strategies that parents, educators, and policymakers can use to create conditions in schools that facilitate the learning of all students. These concise, research-based chapters are written around the framework of the KEYS initiative of the National Education Association (NEA). KEYS, or Keys to Excellence in Your Schools, is a program based on a careful and thorough investigation into how the organizational and cultural characteristics of a school can affect student achievement.

    Although this book was originally commissioned to support the adoption and implementation of the KEYS initiative, the lessons in the chapters apply to any effort to improve schools in fundamental ways.

    The Keys Initiative

    From the research that undergirds KEYS, we learned that quality schools consist of many characteristics, and we identified indicators that can be used to measure quality. Ways of identifying how schools measure up provide schools with tools they can use to improve teaching and learning conditions. Schools that consistently display multiple characteristics of quality, which we call indicators of school excellence, promote high student achievement. But we also learned that to achieve total quality, all of the characteristics must be present, and in large quantities. These characteristics, or indicators, cluster into six broad factors, which we call keys. Each key factor will be addressed in whole or in part by one or more of the chapters that follow. The six keys are as follows:

    • Authentic, Learner-Centered Instruction
    • Shared Understanding and Commitment to High Goals
    • Open Communication and Collaborative Problem Solving
    • Continuous Assessment for Teaching and Learning
    • Personal and Professional Learning
    • Resources to Support Teaching and Learning

    The KEYS initiative provides participating schools with a survey and follow-up analysis that enables them to measure conditions in their schools that affect teaching and learning, identify barriers that may be blocking change, and initiate an improvement effort based on systematically collected data. Part of KEYS is a self-assessment tool that helps schools focus on what works, for whom, and under what conditions. Part of KEYS is a school-based improvement strategy concerned with an organization's enabling conditions and relationships, not specific programs Finally, KEYS is a strategy to involve the NEA in school quality improvement through collegial networking, collective action, and association capacity building. This is an improvement effort that focuses on using NEA resources to lead in establishing the enabling conditions that let schools improve and students learn.

    Origins of the Keys Initiative

    The NEA, which today represents over 3.2 million teachers and other education employees, has been deeply involved in improving the quality of public education since its inception in 1857. The approaches have varied from highly academic pedagogical studies to practical self-help projects for individual classrooms, but the common goal has remained: to provide effective schooling for America's children.

    During the 1980s and into the 1990s, the NEA launched numerous efforts to enhance education quality. Among them were the Mastery in Learning Project and the NEA Learning Laboratories. The primary focus of Mastery in Learning was to enhance learning through school-based reform of teaching and curriculum, emphasizing the importance of making critical decisions as close to the classroom as possible regarding the education of children. The Learning Laboratories project, launched 3 years later, was dedicated to creating a network of school districts engaged in “learning” to improve learning for students and educators. It could be said that the project began to focus on the building of learning communities.

    The KEYS initiative built on the NEAs long-standing tradition of innovation. KEYS was NEAs first attempt to quantify dimensions of school quality and focus on student achievement. The KEYS initiative demonstrates one of many appropriate roles for teacher unions: achieving conditions in schools that enable school systems and educators to make good decisions in a knowledge-oriented society.

    The Research-Based Foundation for Keys

    The NEA research that developed the KEYS initiative began with an analysis of recent research on schools as professional communities and other components of effective schools. Key findings provided the building blocks for KEYS, and these are consistent with the findings of more recent research summarized in this book. Of particular importance to the development of KEYS was evidence from several studies of school change indicating that unless school improvement efforts truly touch the minds and hearts of teachers and become manifest in their behavior and attitudes, the ultimate aims of school reform will go unmet. On average, teachers have been teaching 17 years, working in their current districts for almost 14 years, and serving in their current buildings for 10 years. Contrast this to the average stay of a superintendent (3 years) or even a principal (3 to 5 years), and it becomes apparent that in a long-term process like creating a quality school, teachers must play a central role.

    Nea Research Supporting the Keys Initiative

    Although the development of the KEYS initiative is based on a strong foundation of research by scholars, the NEA has conducted its own research examining the relationship between organizational characteristics of schools and student learning. This research led to the development of the KEYS instrument and provides evidence that the indicators of school quality that are the focus of the KEYS assessment instrument are predictors of high student achievement. The essential findings from this research are the following:

    • Quality schools are multidimensional environments, characterized by many factors that, in total, make them quality teaching and learning environments. There is no one aspect that should be the focus of policymakers in attempting to raise the quality of schools or student achievement. Although not every characteristic contributes directly to student achievement, there are indirect effects, as these characteristics are interrelated.
    • Student achievement is high when school goals, mission, and objectives are clear, explicit, and continuously developed and shared with all concerned.
    • Student achievement is higher in schools in which there is a shared understanding about achievable student outcomes and there is parent and school employee commitment to long-range, continuous improvement.
    • Student achievement is high when central and building administration are committed to long-term, continuous improvement.
    • Student achievement is higher in schools that exhibit the belief that all students can achieve under the right conditions.
    • Student achievement is higher in schools that understand and use assessment of students on a regular basis and use a variety of assessment tools.
    • High-performing public schools are places in which teachers are involved in choosing teaching materials and resources.
    • High-performing schools are places in which all school employees, students, parents, and the community are involved in seeking, identifying, and eliminating barriers to improvement and academic success.
    • High-achieving schools are places in which employee training is based on analysis of student performance and is used to improve job performance. Emphasis is placed on developing teamwork and on improving teaching techniques.
    • In high-performing schools, continuing evaluation is focused primarily on the system, not on individuals, and the overall quality of the school is rated.
    • In high-achieving schools, two-way, nonthreatening communication is constantly occurring. Emphasis is placed on developing a climate for continual improvement.
    • In high-achieving schools, there is concern for the appropriate and cautious use of standardized tests. Multiple forms of assessment are used to identify needs for and strategies of improvement.

    In short, an impressive amount of important theory, research, and practice leads one to the conclusion that the organizational characteristics of schools affect the conditions of teaching and learning and, in turn, these conditions significantly influence student achievement.

    Guidelines for School Improvement

    Research by the NEA and others provides several guidelines for actions that provide direction for schools that wish to increase their capacity for continuous improvement:

    • Strive for shared understanding about achievable education outcomes. Work collaboratively to define a purpose and goals and to determine quantifiable outcomes along with the best methods, strategies, and actions to achieve those outcomes.
    • Involve the total learning community—teachers, education support personnel, administrators, parents, students, and community and business organizations—in quality improvement planning and problem solving the implementation of necessary changes.
    • Engage in continuous, ongoing assessment of teaching and learning and base decision making on this assessment. Establish accountability at all levels to motivate and give direction to improvement.
    • Emphasize personal and professional learning and development. Create a learning environment for the organization. Establish regular, needs-specific staff development focused on solving problems related to student needs.
    • Professional development for teachers and administrators should be an integral part of any plan to decentralize management practices. As much as possible, this training should be designed to meet the needs of students in individual schools.
    • Don't play the quality game unless you are willing to keep score. Be ready to show quantifiable “before and after” data on your change efforts. Focus on assessing the system and its programs.
    • Build two-way, nonthreatening communication channels among all stakeholders.
    • Frequently clarify the expectations, purpose, and progress related to school improvement for the entire learning community.
    • Ensure that materials and social support for continuous improvement are provided.
    Conclusion

    Many of those who would reform our schools continue to seek prescriptive, simple, and inexpensive recipes for what works in schools. All too often, they neglect vital structural and cultural characteristics of schools that affect student outcomes. The chapters in this book show that any comprehensive approach to educational improvement needs to address the challenges involved in creating and sustaining conditions in schools that fundamentally influence the quality of teaching and thereby the opportunities students have to achieve at high levels.

    Donald L.Rollie, Quality Schools, Research, and Policy National Education Association

    About the Editors

    Willis D. Hawley is Professor Emeritus of Education and Public Policy at the University of Maryland and Scholar in Residence at the American Association of School Administrators. From 1997 to 1999, he was Executive Director of the National Partnership for Excellence and Accountability in Teaching. From 1993 to 1998, he served as Dean of the College of Education at the University of Maryland. From 1980 to 1993, he was Professor of Education and Political Science at Vanderbilt University. He served as Dean of Peabody College at Vanderbilt from 1980 to 1989 and then as Director of the Center for Education and Human Development Policy at Vanderbilt Institute for Public Policy Studies. He received his PhD in political science, with distinction, from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1970. He taught at Yale and Duke Universities before going to Vanderbilt.

    He has published numerous articles, book chapters and software dealing with school reform, urban politics, political learning, organizational change, school desegregation, educational policy, teacher education and professional development, policies affecting teaching quality, the costs and benefits of racially and ethnically diverse schools, and school restructuring and effectiveness.

    Hawley has served on the boards of several scholarly and professional publications and as consultant to numerous public agencies, as well as many state and local governments, professional associations, and foundations. From 1977 to 1978, he served as Director of Education Studies, President's Reorganization Project, Executive Office of the President of the United States. He also organized and directed The Common Destiny Alliance, a coalition of national organizations and scholars interested in improving intergroup relations.

    Donald L. Rollie. Since the publication of the first edition of The Keys to Effective Schools (2002), Don Rollie has passed away. Don was an important force for the National Education Association's (NEA) work devoted to creating higher-quality schools. He regularly asked his colleagues the “To what end?” question: “So what difference will this make for student achievement?” His long and distinguished career spanned every level: local, state, and national. During the course of that career, he served as the Executive Director for two state associations and was Manager of the Quality Schools, Research, and Policy unit at NEA. Don believed in the NEA/KEYS Initiative as the path by which all schools could practice “continuous improvement.” Don also believed that school staffs need both knowledge and license to make the decisions by which all students attain high achievement. Don's humor and humanity will be missed by his colleagues at NEA and by all of the people he touched.

    About the Contributors

    Patricia A. Alexander is Professor and Distinguished Scholar-Teacher in the Department of Human Development at the University of Maryland. She has held leadership positions in the American Psychological Association (APA) and the American Educational Research Association, is a Fellow of the APA, and was a Spencer Fellow of the National Academy of Education. Since receiving her PhD from the University of Maryland, in 1981, she has published more than 170 articles, books, or chapters in the area of learning and instruction and has also presented more than 160 papers or invited addresses at national and international conferences. Her research addresses topics such as learning; individual differences; and the interaction of knowledge, interest, and strategic processing. Her recent publications have focused on the nature of academic development, particularly as it relates to domain-specific knowledge and to learning from text. Currently, she serves as the editor of Contemporary Educational Psychology and Instructional Science and sits on editorial boards for numerous journals, including Reading Research Quarterly, Journal of Educational Psychology, Educational Psychologist, American Educational Research Journal, and Journal of Literacy Research.

    Alexander has received various national, university, and college awards for teaching. Recently, she was named one of the 10 most productive scholars in educational psychology and was the 2001 recipient of the Oscar S. Causey Award for outstanding contributions to literacy research from the National Reading Conference. She is also the 2006 recipient of the E. L. Thorndike Award for Career Achievement in Educational Psychology from APA Division 15.

    Eva L. Baker is Distinguished Professor of Education, UCLA Graduate School of Education & Information Studies. She is codirector of the National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standards, and Student Testing (CRESST) and director of the Center for the Study of Evaluation (CSE). She teaches classes in assessment policy and design and in technology. Her research centers on the integration of measurement, training, and accountability systems. She has studied the uses of technology-based measures of complex performance in experimental and large-scale environments for both military and public education and training. She was chair of the Board on Testing and Assessment of the National Research Council and a cochair of the Joint Committee on the revision of the Standards for Educational and Psychological Testing (published in 1999), sponsored by the American Educational Research Association (AERA), the American Psychological Association (APA), and the National Council on Measurement in Education. She has held elected office in the APA and the AERA. She is a Fellow in APA and the Association for Psychological Science. She is president-elect of the AERA and is a Certified Performance Technologist.

    James A. Banks is Russell F. Stark University Professor and Director of the Center for Multicultural Education at the University of Washington, Seattle. His books include Educating Citizens in a Multicultural Society; Cultural Diversity and Education: Foundations, Curriculum and Teaching; Diversity and Citizenship Education: Global Perspectives; and Race, Culture, and Education: The Selected Works of James A. Banks. He is a past president of the American Educational Research Association (AERA) and the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS). He is also a member of the National Academy of Education and holds honorary Doctorates of Humane Letters from four universities. He is a Spencer Fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford for the 2005–2006 academic year.

    Peter Cookson is Dean of the Graduate School and Professor of Educational Administration at Lewis and Clark College, in Portland, Oregon. He has been president of Teachers College Innovations at Columbia University. He has taught in public and private schools. His research and numerous publications deal with applications of educational technology, educational policy, reform, and school choice.

    Lorna M. Earl, PhD, is Director, Aporia Consulting, Ltd., and a recently retired Associate Professor in the Theory and Policy Studies Department and Head of the International Centre for Educational Change at OISE/UT. Her career has spanned research, policy, and practice in school districts, provincial government, and academe. After 25 years as a Research Officer and Research Director in school districts, she was the first Director of Assessment for the Ontario Education Quality and Accountability Office. From there, she moved to OISE/UT. She is a teacher and a researcher with a background in psychology and education and a doctorate in epidemiology and biostatistics. She has worked for more than 20 years in schools and on school boards and, as a leader in the field of assessment and evaluation, has been involved in consultation, research, and staff development with teachers' organizations, ministries of education, school boards, and charitable foundations in Canada, England, Australia, Europe, and the United States.

    Throughout her career, Earl has concentrated her efforts on policy and program evaluations, as a vehicle to enhance learning for pupils and for organizations. She has done extensive work in the areas of literacy and the middle years but has concentrated her efforts on issues related to evaluation of large-scale reform and assessment (large-scale and classroom) in many venues around the world. Some of her recent publications are Leading in a Data Rich World: Harnessing Data for School Improvement; Large-Scale Reform: Life Cycles and Implications for Sustainability; The National Literacy and Numeracy Strategies in England: Building an Infrastructure for Sustainable Change; Changing Secondary Schools Is Hard; and Leadership for Large-Scale Reform.

    Richard F. Elmore is Gregory R. Anrig Professor of Educational Leadership at Harvard University and a Director of the Consortium for Policy Research in Education. His research focuses on the effects of federal, state, and local policy on accountability and the capacity of schools to deliver high-quality instruction. He has also conducted research on school choice, school restructuring, and how changes in teaching and learning affect school organizations. He has served as an advisor to numerous agencies at local, state, and federal levels of government.

    Michael Fullan is the former Dean of the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto. Recognized as an international authority on educational reform, he is engaged in training, consulting, and evaluating change projects around the world. His ideas for managing change are used in many countries, and his books have been published in many languages. He led the evaluation team that conducted the 4-year assessment of the National Literacy and Numeracy Strategy in England, from 1998–2003. In April 2004, he was appointed Special Advisor to the Premier and Minister of Education in Ontario. His widely acclaimed books include the What's Worth Fighting For trilogy (with Andy Hargreaves); the Change Forces trilogy; The New Meaning of Educational Change, third edition; Leading in a Culture of Change (awarded the 2002 Book of the Year Award by the National Staff Development Council); The Moral Imperative of School Leadership; and Leadership and Sustainability: System Thinkers in Action.

    Geneva Gay is Professor of Education at the University of Washington-Seattle, where she teaches multicultural education and general curriculum theory. She is the recipient of the Distinguished Scholar Award, presented by the Committee on the Role and Status of Minorities in Educational Research and Development of the American Educational Research Association; the first Multicultural Educator Award, presented by the National Association of Multicultural Education; and the 2004 W. E. B. DuBois Distinguished Lecturer Award, presented by the Special Interest Group on Research Focus on Black Education of the American Educational Research Association. She is nationally and internationally known for her scholarship in multicultural education, particularly as it relates to curriculum design, staff development, classroom instruction, and intersections of culture, race, ethnicity, teaching, and learning. Her writings include numerous articles and book chapters. She was coeditor of Expressively Black: The Cultural Basis of Ethnic Identity (Praeger, 1987); author of At the Essence of Learning: Multicultural Education (Kappa Delta Pi, 1994) and Culturally Responsive Teaching: Theory, Practice, & Research (Teachers College Press, 2000); and editor of Becoming Multicultural Educators: Personal Journey Toward Professional Agency (Jossey-Bass, 2003). Culturally Responsive Teaching received the 2001 Outstanding Writing Award from the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE). She also is a member of the authorship team of the Scott Foresman New Elementary Social Studies Series. Her professional service includes membership on several national editorial review and advisory boards. International consultations on multicultural education have taken her to Canada, Brazil, Taiwan, Finland, Japan, England, Scotland, and Australia.

    Jacqueline Jordan Irvine is Professor of Urban Education Emeritus at Emory University. Her research deals with the cultural context of teaching and learning and professional development of urban teachers. She is the founding Director of the Center for Urban Learning/Teaching and Urban Research in Education and Schools, which has been recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as a model of effective professional development practice, and she is currently codirector of the Southern Consortium for Educational Research in Urban Schools. Her widely cited books include Black Students and School Failure, Growing Up African American in Catholic Schools, Culturally Responsive Teaching, Critical Knowledge for Diverse Learners, and Educating Teachers for Diversity: Seeing with a Critical Eye. She has received numerous awards for her professional contributions, including recognition by the American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education; the Association for Supervision, Curriculum, and Development; and the American Educational Research Association.

    Kenneth Leithwood is Professor of Educational Administration and Director of the Centre for Leadership Development at the University of Toronto (OISE). Leithwood's interests include understanding the consequences of alternative visions of leadership, the cognitive and emotional processes of leaders, leadership development, organizational leadership, and school reform. His most recent studies deal with leadership in highly accountable policy contexts and in schools serving diverse populations. He is the senior editor of the International Handbook on Educational Leadership and Administration. Some of his other recent books include Understanding Schools as Intelligent Systems; Changing Leadership for Changing Times; Organizational Learning in Schools (with Karen Seashore Louis); Expert Problem Solving: Evidence From School and District Leaders; and Making Schools Smarter. He is responsible for the design and implementation of school leadership development programs at the University of Toronto (OISE) and consults with many other leadership development agencies as well.

    Ann Lieberman is Emeritus Professor from Teachers College, Columbia University. She is now Senior Scholar at the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and Visiting Professor at Stanford University. She was president of the American Educational Research Association (AERA) in 1992. She is widely known for her work in the areas of teacher leadership and development, collaborative research, networks and school-university partnerships, and, increasingly, the problems and prospects of educational change.

    Judith Warren Little is Professor at the Graduate School of Education, University of California, Berkeley. Her research focuses on teachers' work and careers, the contexts of teaching, and policies and practices of professional development. In her current research, she is investigating how teachers' interactions with one another in ordinary workplace settings and in more formal professional development contexts supply resources for teacher learning and the improvement of practice.

    Lynne Miller is Professor of Educational Leadership and Coexecutive Director of the Southern Maine Partnership at the University of Southern Maine (USM), where she holds the Russell Chair in Philosophy and Education. Before joining the USM faculty in 1987, she held a variety of teaching and administrative positions in public schools in Pennsylvania and Indiana. In addition, she served as Assistant Professor of Education at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where she was the liaison to the Worcester Teacher Corps and to the Boston desegregation effort. As a scholar, she has she written widely in the fields of professional learning and school reform; most recently, she completed two books with Ann Lieberman, Teachers Caught in the Action (Teachers College Press, 2001) and Teacher Leadership (Jossey-Bass, 2004). She is currently engaged in connecting high school and college faculty in efforts to prepare more students for success in higher education.

    P. Karen Murphy is Associate Professor of Educational and School Psychology and Special Education at Pennsylvania State University. She is interested in the processes underpinning students' learning and how cognition and motivation impact these processes. Her current research projects pertain to the impact of students' and teachers' knowledge, beliefs, and interest on learning; student learning in particular domains (e.g., mathematics); the impact of technology in classroom learning; and the linking of philosophy and psychology in educational psychology. Murphy's research has been recognized as exemplary by the American Psychological Association and the International Reading Association.

    Fred M. Newmann, Emeritus Professor of Curriculum and Instruction, University of Wisconsin—Madison, directed the National Center on Effective Secondary Schools and the Center on Organization and Restructuring of Schools. With 30 years' experience in school reform research, curriculum development, and teacher education, he contributed new curriculum in the analysis of public controversy and community-based learning. His research has addressed higher-order thinking in social studies, student engagement in secondary schools, authentic achievement and assessment, and professional development to build capacity in low-income schools.

    Sonia Nieto, a researcher, teacher, lecturer, and writer, is Professor Emerita of Language, Literacy, and Culture in the School of Education, University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She has taught students at all levels, from elementary grades through graduate school, most recently preparing teachers and teacher educators. Her research focuses on multicultural education and on the education of Latinos, immigrants, and students of diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds. Her books include Affirming Diversity: The Sociopolitical Context of Multicultural Education (fourth edition, 2004); What Keeps Teachers Going? (2003); and two edited volumes, Puerto Rican Students in U.S. Schools (2000) and Why We Teach (2005), among others. She has also published dozens of book chapters and articles in journals, such as Educational Leadership, Harvard Educational Review, Multicultural Education, and Theory Into Practice. She serves on several national advisory boards that focus on educational equity and social justice and has received many awards for scholarship, advocacy, and activism, including two honorary doctorates, one in Humane Letters from Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts (1999), and the other in Intercultural Relations from Bridgewater State College, Massachusetts (2004). She was an Annenberg Institute Senior Fellow from 1998 to 2000 and was awarded a monthlong residency at the Bellagio Center, in Italy, in 2000.

    Janet Ward Schofield is Professor of Psychology and Senior Scientist at the Learning Research and Development Center at the University of Pittsburgh. She has also served on the faculty of Spellman College and as a visiting scholar at the Social Science Research Center in Berlin. She earned a BA magna cum laude at Harvard University, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, and received her PhD from Harvard in 1972. She is a social psychologist whose research has focused on social and technological change in school settings. She has published more than 90 papers on topics ranging from school desegregation to peer relations in diverse school environments to computer use in schools. She has also authored or coauthored four books, including Black and White in School: Trust, Tension, or Tolerance? which was awarded the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues—Gordon Allport Intergroup Relations Prize. She was elected to serve as a member of the American Psychological Association's governing body, the Council of Representatives. A fellow of both the American Psychological Association (APA) and the Association for Psychological Science (APS), she has served as a consultant to school districts, to foundations, and to policymakers at the local, state, and national levels, as well as on boards and committees at the National Academy of Sciences.

    Walter G. Stephan is Emeritus Professor of Psychology at New Mexico State University. His publications include Intergroup Relations (with Cookie Stephan), Improving Intergroup Relations (with Cookie Stephan), and Education Programs for Improving Intergroup Relations (with Paul Vogt). His lifelong interest in this and related topics continues.

    Gary Sykes is Professor in the Departments of Educational Administration and Teacher Education, Michigan State University where he studies educational policy issues related to teachers and teaching, teacher education, school choice, and school districts. Recent books include Choosing Choice (with David Plank) and Teaching as the Learning Profession (with Linda Darling-Hammond).

    Linda Valli is Associate Professor of Education in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Maryland, College Park. She has also been a junior and senior high school teacher, a director of teacher education, and an associate dean. Her research interests include teacher preparation, professional development, school improvement, and cultural diversity. She has published numerous book chapters as well as articles in journals, such as Teaching and Teacher Education, Journal of Teacher Education, and Action in Teacher Education, and has authored or edited three books, including Reflective Teacher Education: Cases and Critiques.

  • Corwin Press

    The Corwin Press logo—a raven striding across an open book—represents the union of courage and learning. Corwin Press is committed to improving education for all learners by publishing books and other professional development resources for those serving the field of PreK-12 education. By providing practical, hands-on materials, Corwin Press continues to carry out the promise of its motto: “Helping Educators Do Their Work Better.”

    Great Public Schools for Every Child

    Our Mission Statement

    To fulfill the promise of a democratic society, the National Education Association shall promote the cause of quality public education and advance the profession of education; expand the rights and further the interests of educational employees; and advocate human, civil and economic rights for all.


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