The High-Performing School: Benchmarking the 10 Indicators of Effectiveness

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9781934009475: The High-Performing School: Benchmarking the 10 Indicators of Effectiveness

The desire to improve student learning is universal, but the knowledge required to do so is not. The High-Performing School is a guide to a research-based improvement process that has been used successfully in schools of all grade levels, sizes, and demographics for almost a decade. The heart of the process is the on-site school review, a cooperative venture between an external review team and a school's administrators, teachers, and students. The team members spend several days at the school, during which time they learn about the state of the overall program by conducting interviews, administering surveys, observing classes, reviewing student work, and examining data reports and other documents. They then use the information they have gathered to evaluate the school's performance on 10 Effectiveness Indicators-descriptions of practices that research has shown to be in place in high-performing schools. Based on this evaluation, they present recommendations for specific steps the school can take to increase student learning and achievement.

Mardale Dunsworth and Dawn Billings, designers of this on-site school review process, summarize the research behind the 10 Effectiveness Indicators and provide the rubrics they have developed for assessing a school's performance on each one. They then give step-by-step instructions for a school review, which are addressed to both the school being reviewed and the team conducting the review. They also provide 60 tools that they have developed for planning and coordinating the review, collecting evidence for the evaluation, and communicating among the many parties involved in the effort to create a high-performing school.

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About the Author:

Mardale Dunsworth is a founding partner of School Synergy, an educational consulting firm. She was formerly director of learning and teaching technology for Washington State. In that capacity, she led the design and development of an innovative Web-based statewide professional development and certification system. Previously, as director of the Office of Curriculum, Instruction, and Professional Technical Education in the Oregon Department of Education, Mardale led the development of the research-based Comprehensive School Review process, supervised services to low-performing schools, coordinated regional technical assistance, and administered federal grant programs. She was a small-business owner prior to entering public service. Mardale holds a bachelor's degree in public policy and administration and a maste's degree in curriculum and instruction.

Dawn Billings is also a founding partner of School Synergy. Before forming School Synergy, Dawn was assistant superintendent for professional development for Washington State. She led the statewide professional development initiative, including the creation of Washington's Professional Development Standards. Previously Dawn was director of curriculum and instruction in the Oregon Department of Education. She led the development of state content standards, directed Reading First and Title II, and supervised charter schools. She has held a variety of teaching and administrative positions in both public education and business and industry. Dawn holds bachelor's and master's degrees in education.

Mardale and Dawn have been involved in the design, development, and use of the on-site school review process since 2000.

Review:

I would recommend this book to any administrator because it gives a clear and complete vision of what is needed to make a difference at the school level. If I were a professor teaching administrative courses, this book would be required reading. —Anita L. Archer, education consultant

Many states, districts, and schools are trying to improve the effectiveness of student learning. This book is a fabulous tool for them to organize their work around. —Marilyn Simpson, former director, Professional Development IN ACTION, Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, State of Washington

Many states, districts, and schools are trying to improve the effectiveness of student learning. This book is a fabulous tool for them to organize their work around. With such detailed guidance, I could definitely replicate the effective process outlined in this book in my district. --Jon P. Bridges, administrator for accountability, Beaverton School District, Oregon

Many states, districts, and schools are trying to improve the effectiveness of student learning. This book is a fabulous tool for them to organize their work around. --With such detailed guidance, I could definitely replicate the effective process outlined in this book in my district. --Jon P. Bridges, administrator for accountability, Beaverton School District, Oregon

I would recommend this book to any administrator, because it gives a clear and complete vision of what is needed to make a difference at the school level. If I were a professor teaching administrative courses, this book would be required reading. ---Anita L. Archer, education consultant

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