Common Principles for Uncommon Schools

Horace Decision Making Processes

“So Now What?” Managing the Change Process

Can we impose order on the messy process of school change? Only by agreeing that teamwork is viatl, veterans say. Changes in classroom practices, school structures, and attitudes then rise and fall like a juggler’s balls, keeping each other in balance. Judy Cunningham can put her finger right on what turned the tide of change at Rancho San Joaquin, where

An Excerpt from Choosing Small: The Essential Guide to High School Conversion

In October 2005, Jossey-Bass releases Choosing Small: The Essential Guide to High School Conversion by CES Director of Research Jay Feldman, and former CES staffers M. Lisette L?pez and Katherine G. Simon. In Choosing Small, CES draws on its longtime experience in school design and research on completed school conversions to provide strategic and practical guidance, offering those creating new

Horace: Decision Making Processes Published: September 9, 2005 By: Topics: Decision Making Processes

Coalition Materials That Can Support the Change Effort

STUDIES ON TEACHER CHANGE A Feeling of Uneasiness: An English Teacher in the Midst of Change, by P. A. Wasley. (TC1) Trusting Kids and Their Voices: A Humanities Teacher in the Midst of Change, by P.A. Wasley. (TC2) A Formula for Making a Difference: A Math Teacher in the Midst of Change, by P.A. Wasley. (TC3) Stirring the Chalkdust: Three

Educators Talk about Leadership for Equity: Roundtable Interview II

Horace editor Jill Davidson met with four Bay Area educators—Michelle Lau, math teacher at Fremont’s Irvington High School, David Montes de Oca, educational strategist at Oakland’s Urban Promise Academy, Monica Vaughan, teacher-leader at Oakland’s Street Academy, and Michele Dawson, technology coordinator at Daly City’s Jefferson Elementary School District—for a roundtable discussion on leading for equity. All four are current or

Horace Talks with Ted Sizer: The History, Limitations, and Possibilities of School Districts

Ted Sizer, founder of the Coalition of Essential Schools and now its Chair Emeritus, discussed his frustrations with school districts as they typically operate with Jill Davidson, Horace‘s editor. Horace: Do you believe that schools work better within systems than as islands? Ted Sizer: Schools came before districts. Formal education in this country started in somebody’s kitchen, then somebody’s church,

Horace’s Mailbox: On ‘Lessons Learned’

To the Editor: There’s too much wisdom here [“What Works, What Doesn’t: Lessons Learned from Essential School Reform,” HORACE Vol. 9, No. 2] for it to be lost in the telling. And too much need for reformers to understand what we could do wrong and hence participate in undoing what we are specifically trying to do. Isn’t there some sense

Indianapolis’ Commitment to Small High Schools: Finding New Ways to Say Yes

“Indianapolis Public Schools operates some of the worst dropout factories in the nation. Hundreds of students each year quit school, most landing in dead-end jobs or prisons. In some families, dropping out has become a way of life with neither parents nor children completing high school,” begins the first paragraph of a May 2005 eight-part editorial series published in the

Professional Development: School-Based, Goal-Centered, Non-Stop, Exploratory

If teachers in Essential schools are to shape sweeping changes in everything from classroom practices to school structures, they will need sustained coaching in how to do it. A growing number of analysts regard professional development as the single most important key to the change process. And new ways of linking teachers’ learning opportunities directly to school goals and integrating

Some Resources for Thinking About School Change

Adler, M. The Paideia Proposal: An Educational Manifesto. New York: Macmillan, 1982. Barth, R. “A Personal Vision of a Good School.” Phi Delta Kappan, March 1990: 512-516. Brown, R. Schools of Thought: How the Politics of Literacy Shape Thinking In The Classroom. San Francisco: Jossey Bass, 1991. Comer, J. P. School Power. New York: Free Press, 1980. Darling-Hammond, L. “Standards

What Schools Can Learn from Resistant Teachers

A persistent issue in any school change effort is teachers who do not support the changes. Unless a school has the luxury of choosing its entire staff from the start, such a problem is virtually unavoidable. Some resistant teachers are opposed from the start — they question the need for change, worry about losing their jobs, or just plain disagree