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Breaking Through Transforming Urban School Districts

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ISBN-10: 0807746576

ISBN-13: 9780807746578

Edition: 2006

Authors: John Simmons, Deborah Meier

List price: $30.95
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Is it possible to fundamentally improve the daily working of the urban classroom in less than seven years? In this ambitious volume, Simmons and a stellar group of contributors bring the best current research to bear on a range of critical topics, creating a practical framework that superintendents and their teams can use to transform their big-city school systems into true learning communities. Integrating many voices into a larger vision, Breaking Through: Demonstrates how cutting-edge thinking about system change in business has been used to successfully transform schools and close the achievement gap among diverse students, Provides an overview and assessment of the reform efforts of…    
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Book details

List price: $30.95
Copyright year: 2006
Publisher: Teachers College Press
Publication date: 12/22/2005
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 264
Size: 6.00" wide x 8.75" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.792
Language: English

John Simmons is a consultant and author whose books have been internationally influential. A former director of Newell and Sorrell and Interbrand, he has worked with clients such as Diageo and Unilever to help them create a distinctive tone of voice and to tell their stories better. Now an independent consultant and director of brand language at, he writes regularly for the media and runs writing workshops for individuals and businesses. He is a co-founder of 26 ( ), a U.K.-based non-profit collective that champions the cause of better writing in business.

Introduction: The Challenge of Changing a Complex System
No Excuses: Transforming Urban School Districts
School Reform in Chicago, 1988-2005
What Worked in High-Gain Schools?
What Did Not Work?
Drawing the New Map: The Three Organizing Principles
Consistency: One Vision in the Classroom and the Central Office
Case Study-Superintendent Jerry Anderson, Brazosport, Texas
Simultaneity: Work Everywhere at Once
Case Study-Superintendent Tom Payzant, Boston, Massachusetts
Quality: Learn from the Best
Focus Here: Four Necessary Strategies
Create Leaders at Every Level
Case Study-Superintendent Tom Payzant, Boston, Massachusetts
Transform the Structure and Culture
Case Study-Decentralization, Autonomy, and Accountability in Chicago, San Diego, Boston, and Houston
Improve Instruction
Involve Parents and Make Funding Adequate and Equitable
In the Driver's Seat: Lessons from Big-City Superintendents
Case Study-Improving Business Practices-Superintendents Alan Bersin, Tom Payzant, and Kaye Stripling in San Diego, Boston, and Houston
Case Study-Managing Resistance to Change-Former Superintendent Alan Bersin, San Diego
What They Share: A Final Overview
No Time to Waste: Expert Strategies for Accelerating Change
Create More Effective Leaders at Every Level
Recruiting and Training Effective School Leaders: What Will It Take?
Developing School Leaders: Issues and Ideas in Professional Development
School District Leadership in a Time of Accountability
Transform the Structure and Culture of the System
Large-Scale Improvement in Urban Public School Systems: The Next Generation of Reform
The Silence of the System: Why Organizations Can't Learn
"People Treat You Differently If You Have Money": School-Site Decision Making in Edmonton
Whole-School and Systemwide Reform: Problems and Promises
Early Education, Care, and School Success
High School Redesign: What's Working
Improving Student Achievement Through Labor-Management Collaboration
Improve the Quality of Instruction
Urban Teaching: Strategies for Quality
Improving Student Learning Through Enhanced Teacher Quality
Cultivating Accountability: Creating Conditions for All Students to Achieve High Standards
Build Effective Support with Parents and Funding
Improving Parent Engagement
Education Reform and School Finance
Leading Change: How to Transform a System That Resists Improvement
When "Best Practice" Is Not Enough: Three Studies
Foundations for Success
An Impossible Job?
School Communities That Work
What These Studies Lack
The High-Performance Paradigm Shift
Continuous Improvement for Schools and Districts
Fourteen Points for Continuous Improvement in Education
The Z Process for Leading Change: How You Do It Is Even More Important Than What You Do
Implementation and Improvement
Applying the Z Process: How Brazosport Closed the Gap
More Ideas for Using the Z
The Leadership Needed
Pulling It All Together
Don't Let This Book Sit on a Shelf: A Call to Action
About the Authors