Opinion
Education Letter to the Editor

Strategic Support for ‘Unexpected’ Schools

August 29, 2017 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

To the Editor:

Karin Chenoweth’s Commentary on the systems behind “unexpected” schools’ success (“What ‘Unexpected’ Schools Do That Other Schools Don’t,” July 19, 2017) is right on target. Fundamental to scaling up that success is the school system within which each school operates. Districts can embrace the opportunity to use resources in ways that enable, support, and encourage unexpected schools to thrive. Innovative districts nationwide make bold moves to restructure resource decisions around people, time, and money and implement the systems Chenoweth described—what many would call strategic school design.

Take the Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools in Charlotte, N.C., for example. Almost 10 years ago, this district recognized how the central office could better support struggling schools and implemented a strategic staffing initiative. They put together teams of top leaders and teachers, provided training and support to those teams, and gave them flexibility over their resources to make necessary changes. Because of this enhanced district support, many of the schools made significant academic gains. Similar efforts are taking place now in Cleveland and Memphis, Tenn., where district leaders are working with schools to implement strategic school design in conjunction with applying weighted student-funding systems. When district leaders make the bold changes necessary to make strategic school design a possibility for every school, unexpected schools become the schools that parents and students can expect.

Karen Hawley Miles

CEO and President

Education Resource Strategies

Watertown, Mass.

A version of this article appeared in the August 30, 2017 edition of Education Week as Strategic Support for ‘Unexpected’ Schools

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Mathematics Webinar
Pave the Path to Excellence in Math
Empower your students' math journey with Sue O'Connell, author of “Math in Practice” and “Navigating Numeracy.”
Content provided by hand2mind
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Recruitment & Retention Webinar
Combatting Teacher Shortages: Strategies for Classroom Balance and Learning Success
Learn from leaders in education as they share insights and strategies to support teachers and students.
Content provided by DreamBox Learning
Classroom Technology K-12 Essentials Forum Reading Instruction and AI: New Strategies for the Big Education Challenges of Our Time
Join the conversation as experts in the field explore these instructional pain points and offer game-changing guidance for K-12 leaders and educators.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Education Briefly Stated: September 20, 2023
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education From Our Research Center What's on the Minds of Educators, in Charts
Politics, gender equity, and technology—how teachers and administrators say these issues are affecting the field.
1 min read
Stylized illustration of a pie chart
Traci Daberko for Education Week
Education Briefly Stated: August 30, 2023
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Briefly Stated: August 23, 2023
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
9 min read