School Reset Models

OVERVIEW

SEN reset models reduce the number of staff and students leadership team members are responsible for, enabling leaders to teach and support community members to meet higher standards. Instructional coaches working with 6-8 teachers or teachers monitoring academic progress for 15-20 students can both be intimately familiar with the strengths and needs of each of their charges, and can craft individualized development plans to help them hit their targets. The targeted support afforded by the reduced management load can lead to rapid improvements.

SEN and our district partners value school leadership as a lever for change. It is crucial that our partners understand the importance of supporting a school leader’s vision and are willing to provide the leader with the requisite autonomy to make necessary school-based decisions. We believe that if the district forces priorities that are not aligned with those dictated by the leader’s vision, the school is unlikely to progress. School leaders should be free to manage their budgets, establish best instructional practices, and, most importantly, manage talent in their buildings. Ideally, SEN leaders will have the freedom to make personnel decisions based on a rubric-normed observation and feedback cycle, as well as on student outcomes on assessments. 

SCHOOL RESET OPTIONS

For each new school or Small Learning Community (SLC) at scale, SEN prepares teams of 1 principal/SLC leader, 1 master teacher, and 2 lead teachers who comprise the Instructional Leadership Team.

Middle and High Schools

Option 1: Simultaneous division of a large school into smaller schools (or SLCs within the larger school) with renewed standards and culture.

Example: A high school (9-12) with 1,200 students is divided into three small high schools (9-12) of 400 students each.

Option 2: SLCs are phased in one grade at a time within a large struggling school until an effective school reset is achieved in all grades. The principal leads a cabinet consisting of the leadership teams of all the SLCs.

Example: A high school can be divided into two SLCs, one serving grades 9-10 and the other grades 11-12. Student expectations and teacher teams can be established at each level under the guidance of SLC leadership teams. SLCs can be grown from the 9th grade up, allowing for a complete culture reset in the school, or can be started in the 9th and 11th grades simultaneously.

Option 3: New small schools are phased in one grade at a time until they completely replace the original school.

Example: In year 1, a middle school (grades 6-8) begins to be replaced by two small schools, beginning with grade 6 only, while the larger school continues to focus on and improve grades 7 and 8. In year 2, the new schools have grades 6 and 7, with the original school now serving only grade 8. In the third year, the new schools would have completely replaced the original school.

Elementary Schools

Option 1: Simultaneous division of a large school into smaller schools (or SLCs within the larger school) with renewed standards and culture.

Example: An elementary school (K-5) with 1,200 students is divided into three small schools (K-5) of 400 students each.

Option 2: Simultaneous division of the original school into SLC grade bands, each with a dedicated team of teachers and leadership team. The building principal leads a cabinet consisting of the leadership teams of all of the SLCs.

Example: An elementary school (K-5) with 1,200 students is partitioned into three SLCs serving grades K-1, 2-3, and 4-5, respectively. Ideally, the SLC leaders have the opportunity to build a teaching team that is aligned to their leadership.

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“The thing that separates SEN from a lot of folks is their authenticity and the fact that you can tell they are passionate about the right things.”

— Abe Sohn, Principal @ Central 9th Grade Academy

“Students are engaging in more rigorous and higher-quality learning activities than they were previously.”
 

— Haley Hart, Master Teacher @ Southeastern High School


 

REAL RESULTS

SEN’s impact on students in the Education Achievement Authority of Michigan is clearly evident. Between the 2014-15 and 2015-16 school years, student proficiency on the Michigan Test of Educational Progress (M-STEP) increased for both elementary/middle School and high school students



OUTCOMES

School Empowerment Network

Participants in our programs are expected to produce tangible, measurable results for their schools beginning in the first year of implementation.  With our programs in place we expect to see improvements in the following areas:

  • Success developing and implementing a turnaround action plan, based on a formal needs assessment (conducted by SEN and district leadership).
  • Impact on teacher effectiveness: evaluation rating accuracy, teacher growth in observation/evaluation ratings, and teacher retention.
  • Impact on student performance on assessments at the school level, district level, and national level.  
  • Impact on school climate and culture: improvement in student engagement in classrooms and increase in student on-culture behaviors outside classrooms. 
  • Portfolio assessments: products from the field (e.g. data analysis, lesson plan feedback).
  • Leadership rubric: evaluation of competency mastery, based on deliverables and in-school performance.
  • Teacher, student, and community feedback: formal and informal surveys.

          *** See here to see SEN’s 2016-2017 Impact Report****