Professional Development Tools and Resources

Please choose a leadership responsibility, first-order change or second-order change to see the professional development tools and resources available.

Leadership Responsibility / Order of Change:

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A Guide to Positive School Discipline

A comprehensive resource for fulfilling the school quality standard which states: “Each school shall maintain a safe, orderly, civil and positive learning environment, which is free from hazing, harassment and bullying and based on sound instructional and classroom management practices and clear discipline and attendance policies that are consistently and effectively enforced”.
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A Policymaker's Primer on Education Research: How to Understand, Evaluate and Use It

This interactive, online tool will help state leaders understand what education research says, whether it is trustworthy and what it means for policy. ecs.org link - EDUCATION RESEARCH

Browse publication by title.
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Asking the Right Questions

Asking the Right Questions: A Leader's Guide to Systems Thinking about School Improvement-38 page document
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Increasing Staff Retention

North Central Regional Educational Laboratory - 138 page document

(See Chapter 4: Increasing Staff Retention, Tool 8, PDF p. 99 in Making Good Choices: Sustaining School Improvement)
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Leadership for Learning: How to Help Teachers Succeed

Glickman, C. D., (2002). This book is available from ASCD, Alexandria, VA. ASCD.org link.

Available through ASCD.org
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Made to stick: Why some ideas survive and others die. New York: Random House

Heath, C., & Heath, D. (2007).

Available from Amazon.com.
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Provide incentives for change

North Central Regional Educational Laboratory-138 page document

(See Strategy 6: Provide incentives for change, PDF p. 15 in Making Good Choices: Sustaining School Improvement)
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See “Relationships,” PDF pp. 38-39 in Professional Learning Communities: Communities of Continuous Inquiry and Improvement)

72 page document
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Teacher Quality and Student Achievement: Recommendations for Principals

Kaplan, Leslie S, Owings, William A. (2001, November). NASSP Bulletin 85 (628), 64-73.

This item requires a subscription to NASSP Bulletin Online. Available through sagepub.com
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The Balanced Leadership Framework: Connecting vision with action

Handbook describing the components of McREL's Balanced Leadership Framework

This handbook describes the components of McREL's Balanced Leadership Framework, which arranges the 21 responsibilities of effective leaders that McREL identified in its meta-analysis of research on leadership into three key components: Focus of leadership (i.e., the areas a principal targets for school improvement efforts), Building purposeful community (i.e., helping the school community coalesce around clear goals), Magnitude of change (i.e., understanding the implications of change efforts for stakeholders and adjusting leadership behaviors accordingly)
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The influentials: One American in ten tells the other nine how to vote, where to eat and what to buy.

Keller, E., & Berry, J. (2003). Available from Amazon.com

New York: The Free Press
See Chapter 3: The influence Spiral: How Influentials Get and Spread Ideas Available through amazon.com
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The role of shared values and vision in creating professional learning communities

Huffman, J. (2003, December) NASSP Bulletin, 87 (637), 21-34

Mature and relatively less mature learning communities are examined in this paper to uncover the role shared values and vision have played in professional learning community development. Available through eric.ed.gov
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The Sustainability of Innovative Schools as Learning Organizations and Professional Learning Communities During Standardized Reform

Giles, C. & Hargreaves, A. (2006, February). Education Administration Quarterly, 42(1), 124-156.

Available through sagepub.com - see #42
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The World Café Presents: Café to Go

A quick reference guide for putting conversations to work. (A 7-page PDF document.)
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What works in schools: Translating research into action. Alexandria, VA: ASCD.

Marzano, R. J. (2003).

Available through ASCD.org
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Open secrets of top performers (Changing Schools,Summer, 2012) Pg. 1

Examples of actions and ideas for steps toward excellence
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The ABC's of Professionalism (Changing Schools; Summer, 2012, Pg. 5)

What does it take for a low- performing school to create a strong sense of professionalism and culture of high performance?
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How Do They Do It? (Changing Schools; Summer, 2011, Page 9)

Family Involvement in After School Programs
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Creating a culture of high expectations (Changing Schools; Spring, 2007, page 5)

Article looks at a 3-year study of high-needs schools
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Great teachers and great teaching: The district's role (Changing Schools; Summer, 2008; Page 3)

leaders need to attract and retain great teachers by providing necessary supports.
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Classroom Walkthroughs: Learning to see the trees and the forest (Changing Schools; Summer, 2008; Page 9)

What to look for in classroom walkthroughs.
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Superior Execution; (Changing Schools; Fall, 2008; Page 1)

When knowing what to do isn't enough: the importance of knowing why we aren't doing what we are suppose to do to succeed in improving achievement.
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Climbing to the top through Professional Development; (Changing Schools; Fall, 2008; Page 4)

Gaining a better understanding of the power of professional development
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Tapping the power of positive school cultures; (Changing Schools; Fall, 2011; Page 1)

Individual and collective mindsets affect school improvement efforts.
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Instructional strategies link classrooms in Youngstown; (Changing Schools; Fall, 2011; page 6)

Progress in student achievement is linked to a principal's increased knowledge and involvement in instruction.
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Engagement and achievement mutually reinforce mission of West Denver Prep; (Changing Schools; Fall, 2011; Page 8)

A school's mission to create a culture of college readiness and how one principal led this charge.
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Asking the Right Questions: A Leader's Guide to systems Thinking About School Improvement; (McREL Website: Product Listing

This guidebook is designed to help school leaders, particularly principals think systematically as they examine school improvement issues and make decisions about change
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How are Educators Using Data? A Comparative Analysis of Superintendent, Principal, and Teachers' Perceptions of Accountability Systems (mcREL Website: Product Listing

This study provides descriptive information about the need for schools and districts to effectively use data, how schools and districts use data to guide classroom practice and the difference in data use jbased on the level of student proficiency in individual systems.
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Leadership: A McREL Report Prepared for Stupski Foundation's Learning System (McREL Website: Product Listing)

The report identifies four options for creating and supporting successful school leaders of underserved students.
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McREL Insights: From Knowledge to Wisdom: Using Case Methodology to Develop Effective Leaders

This issue of McREL Insights examines the role of case methodology in leadership development and McREL's application of case studies in the Balanced Leadership program. The authors detail McREL's taxonomy for developing professional knowledge and how leaders develop wisdom.
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Using data creates a fail-safe system; (Changing Schools; Spring, 2012; Page 4)

The importance of having a district "dashboard" that makes relevant data readily accessible for decision making.
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How to give apples: Rethinking teacher evaluations

This articles discusses the critical role personnel evaluation plays in ensuring that districts are investing in human capital - hiring, developing, and continuously supporting great teachers.
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Embracing failure to succeed

This article depicts how failure is not necessarily fatal, but failure to change might be.
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McREL Insights: Schools That "Beat the Odds"

Based on the findings of a rigorous study of high-performing, high-needs schools, this report describes the distinguishing characterisitics of "beat-the-odds" schools.