• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

How great groups make great schools

Training leaders how to conduct effective meetings is important, but it's not enough to ensure that the professional development process is valuable. This field book shows educators how to develop group culture, enhance facilitators' skills, and optimize the group's most precious resource—its members. The authors describe how to form working committees, task forces, grade-level, and department teams, and faculties that are more effective and better equipped to resolve complex issues around student learning. Specific topics include

Understanding eight principles that underlie effective groups; Learning the five standards for effective meetings; Setting clear goals and roles; Practicing new ways of talking for improved collaboration; Examining perceptions and mental models; Enhancing energy sources; Working with conflict; Developing basic facilitation skills

This practical guide's special features include the newly updated seven norms of collaboration, a sample team assessment survey, instruments for assessing meeting effectiveness, an extensive bibliography, and practical examples embedded throughout the text. Practitioners will find a valuable road map for leading effective, student-focused school improvement efforts.

Understanding Group Roles
Understanding group roles

“Learning is no longer preparation for the job; it is the job,” according to a 2010 report by the National Commission on Teaching and America's Future (NCTAF). The authors go on to say that the “era of isolated teaching, working alone to meet the myriad needs of students is neither educationally effective nor economically viable in the 21st century.” In an earlier report, the Commission noted that up to 46% of teachers leave their classrooms in the first five years of teaching, citing as reasons isolation, lack of support, lack of influence, and inadequate time to collaborate (NCTAF, 2003).

In schools in which collaboration is the norm, teachers are engaged in types of constructivist learning similar to that which they lead ...

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