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Is the work you give students engaging--enabling them to learn what they need to learn in order to succeed in the world? Maverick educator Phillip Schlechty believes that the key to improving education is to improve the quality of this student work. He calls this "Working the Work" (WOW), and he's developed a framework that allows educators to put the WOW principles into practice. Beginning with 12 essential components of a WOW school, Schlechty suggests ways to improve the quality of content, organization of knowledge, measurement of achievement, nurturance of creativity, and novelty and variety of tasks. In addition, you'll get: * Practical guidelines for re-designing classroom activity so that more students are highly engaged in schoolwork * Clear and compelling standards for assessing student work You'll also make clear connections between what students are doing and what they are expected to produce as you gain insight into the roles of teachers, principals, and superintendents--and, how they individually and collectively play a part in the WOW process.
ENGAGING STUDENTS In Phillip Schlechty's best-selling book Working on the Work, he outlined a motivational framework for improving student performance by improving the quality of schools designed for students. Engaging Students offers a next-step resource in which Schlechty incorporates what he's learned from the field and from the hundreds of workshops he and the Schlechty Center staff have conducted since Working on the Work was first published. This innovative and practical book is focused on helping teachers become increasingly successful in designing engaging work for their students. Schlechty contends that rather than viewing schools as teaching platforms, schools must be viewed as learning platforms. Rather than seeing schools as knowledge distribution systems, schools must be seen as knowledge work systems. Rather than defining teachers as instructors, teachers must be defined as designers, leaders, and guides to instruction. Engaging Students also includes useful questionnaires that will facilitate discussion, analysis, and action planning at both school and classroom levels. Praise for Engaging Students "In Engaging Students, Schlechty boldly delineates why the focus on engaging students overrides the focus on test scores. Every teacher and administrator in my district will use this guide to transform our entire organization into one that is truly focused on student engagement." —KIM REDMOND, superintendent, Canton Local Schools, Canton, Ohio "This insightful book reminds us that every decision made in schools should ultimately benefit students. You will find yourself referring to this book again and again as a guide to support you in your role as an educator." —ALLENE MAGILL, executive director, Professional Association of Georgia Educators, Atlanta, Georgia "Here is a much-enriched framework for everything Dr. Schlechty advocates: well articulated curriculum standards, schools as a platform for learning, teachers as leaders and designers of engaging and meaningful work, and students becoming responsible for their learning." —NYANA SIMS, K-12 literacy and induction facilitator, Goshen School District, Torrington, Wyoming "By understanding and implementing the principles so thoughtfully articulated in this book, schools can become centers of highly engaged learners—and in that endeavor find again the joy of teaching and learning." —JOHNNY VESELKA, executive director, Texas Association of School Administrators, Austin, Texas
Written by acclaimed school reform advocate Phillip C. Schlechty, Leading for Learning offers educators the framework, tools, and processes they need to transform their schools from bureaucracies into dynamic learning organizations. Schlechty explains how to move beyond some of the deeply ingrained and negative conceptions of schooling that guide so much of their practice. He shows educators how they can take advantage of new learning technologies by increasing their organization's capacity to support continuous innovation. "Clearly not for the fainthearted, Schlechty's engrossing appraisal of American education calls for a bold, truly fundamental transformation of how we run our public schools. Some books are thought-provoking; this one is action-provoking." —W. James Popham, professor emeritus, UCLA "Dr. Schlechty has once again written an insightful book that educational leaders can use as a road map in transforming our schools into learning organizations designed to serve twenty-first century students." —Dr. Randy Bridges, superintendent, Alamance-Burlington School System, NC "Because education is ultimately a community responsibility, Schlechty's proposal to shift school systems from bureaucracies to learning organizations can open doors to citizens who are frustrated by the bureaucracy in their efforts to reclaim their role in education. This book is as much for them as it is for professional educators." —David Mathews, president, Kettering Foundation "Anyone in a school leadership position—from the board room to the classroom—should read this engaging and thought-provoking book. It's a must?-read for all immersed in or contemplating the transformation of public education." — Claudia Mansfield Sutton, chief communications and marketing officer, American Association of School Administrators
Schlechty shows both educators and parents how to envision reform and design quality educational systems. He explains how the visioning process must be rooted in real shared beliefs, how mission statements must unpack visions into concrete goals that are connected to action, and how the results of reform can be usefully assessed. Drawing on the author's vast experience in the day-to-day work of implementing school reform, Inventing Better Schools offers new approaches for setting standards and ensuring accountability--and includes samples of actual mission statements and strategic plans of successful school districts.
"Once again, Phil Schlechty demonstrates why I consider him to be one of the clearest minds in American education. He knows how important public education is to our democracy and has real ideas for making it better. This book is a must-read for policymakers at any level and for those who think and care about school improvement." --Paul D. Houston, executive director, American Association of School Administrators "Schlechty shares leading-edge insights and offers practical guidance to anyone who affects student learning. His suggestions are wonderful dialogue starters for educators searching for ways to make dramatic improvement in schools." --Dennis Sparks, executive director, National Staff Development Council In this visionary book, renowned educator Phillip Schlechty argues for change-adept school systems. He not only challenges educational administrators, teachers, teacher leaders, legislators, and policymakers to recognize the need for transformation, but also shows how they can grow into skillful leaders of lasting change. Shaking Up the Schoolhouse begins with an incisive discussion of the dangers and opportunities in reworking school systems. Drawing from decades of experience and from actual cases, the author describes the essential characteristics of change-adept organizations. He then presents a practical framework for helping teachers to overcome obstacles in the learning experience, from reviewing the competition to improving student engagement through more effective standards. Schlechty also focuses on empowering principals, superintAndents, and school board members as they struggle with structural and cultural change in their schools and communities.
In Creating Great Schools, Phillip C. Schlechty—one of the nation’s best-known experts on leadership and change in schools—offers a hands-on primer that will help arm school leaders with the tools they need to buck the system from within. Creating Great Schools shows educational leaders how they can sustain continuous innovation and improvement in order to create truly great schools. Schlechty outlines the six critical systems that define the norms and expressions of the school’s organizational culture¾recruitment and induction, knowledge transmission, power and authority, evaluation, direction, and boundaries¾and shows what it takes to lead effective systemic change in order to sustain new values and direction. The book is filled with effective strategies and offers guidelines for introducing the “disruptive innovations” that are necessary to change the fundamental norms of an educational organization and truly revitalize a school. He offers suggestions for working through the thorny issues that arise from the efforts to introduce new norms and provides school leaders with valuable insights of the critical rules, roles, and relationships in schools.
Featuring 18 new essays, this second edition shows how school leaders can promote extraordinary changes, be accountable, and achieve meaningful results for schools, districts, and their personal lives.

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