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Now is the time to reflect on the school year. What goals were accomplished? How did your leadership style help move your staff forward in the process of transforming inclusive practices? What were the successes and challenges of this school year? This tool is designed to offer schools a set of inclusive education best-practice indicators, a framework to guide inclusive programming, and a rating scale from which schools can evaluate their progress and determine targets for improvement.
Click HERE to access the Inclusive Schools Tool.
LeadScape school recognized by Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction for developing partnerships
Congratulations to LeadScape partner Mike Hernandez, principal of Sherman Middle School in Madison, Wisconsin! His school has been recognized by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction for “forging partnerships among teachers, parents, administrators, other school staff members, and the community to create an educational environment that supports student learning.” Thanks, Mike, for demonstrating that inclusive school leadership benefits all members in a school.
Culturally Responsive Coaching for Inclusive Schools: A Guide to Planning Your LeadScape Coaching Dialogues
NIUSI-LeadScape coaching consists of a series of structured, one-on-one, interactions between a coach and coachee aimed at enhancing the coachee’s effectiveness in developing inclusive school practices. These interactions can be face to face, by telephone, or combined with team meetings as required. Coaching can be used to support teachers, support personnel, instructional leaders, or school principals as needed to reinforce inclusive practices. Coaching addresses multiple layers of reflection and practice.
You can download this helpful coaching tool here.
Facilitating Transformation: A Framework for Culturally Responsive Cognitive Coaching in Schools is NIUSI-LeadScape's unique coaching process. It's designed to engage practitioners in working together in a ThirdSpace to develop understandings of culturally responsive, inclusive practices that benefit all students. LeadScape coaches engage educators in technical skill development, analysis of contextual variables, and critical examination of their own practices. The document is available here: Coaching Framework
LeadScape Principal Dr. Delores Inniss of Sunrise Elementary, Orange County, Florida has been chosen to take on the role of Principal–on-Assignment under the BRIDGE Leadership Grant. BRIDGE stands for Building Rigor In Developing Great Educational Leadership. She will be serving as a coach for newly appointed principals of her district. Since 2007, Dr. Inniss has been a member of the NIUSI-LeadScape community of inclusive school principals. Under her leadership, Sunrise has become a school where inclusion is part of the everyday routine, has been graded an A+ school by the State of Florida, and was named one of the “Top 100 High Performing Schools in Florida”. We congratulate her for being recognized for her extraordinary leadership. It is our pleasure to be associated with Orange County School System’s new BRIDGE principal mentor, Dr. Delores Inniss!
Many states and districts are implementing Response to Intervention/Response to Instruction models in order to improve outcomes for ALL students. RTI is a flexible framework for making data-based decisions for instructional intervention; there are different “models” and guidelines for implementation at all levels (K-12). We’d like to share a few of the resources available to help administrators, teachers, staff, and families to understand and implement RTI effectively:
Check out the National Center on RTI's webinar on using Curriculum-Based Measurement (CBM) to determine RTI. The webinar will be live on Tuesday, August 11th, from noon to 1:00 pm. Eastern/11:00 a.m. to noon Central/10:00 to 11:00 a.m. Mountain/9:00 - 10:00 a.m. Pacific and Arizona times. District or school administrators, teachers, related service providers and parents who are interested in learning about CBM and how to implement it in reading are encouraged to participate. Be sure to check in early to ensure compatibility with your computer. As always, the webinar will be posted on the National Center for RTI's website afterward for your convenience. That National Center on RTI is one of LeadScape's partners in the U.S. Department of Education's Technical Assistance & Dissemination network.
LeadScape principals are looking forward to the 2009 LeadScape Summer Institute, July 14-17 in Washington, DC. This year our professional learning activities focus on creating classroom practices that involve ALL children in learning, including examining issues of power and privilege, cultural responsive literacy, and creating resilient classrooms. Special guest Beth Doll will show how to create class maps to help improve relationships and outcomes using student and teacher input. Some of our principals will also have the opportunity to meet with their local Congressional representatives!
LeadScape now has the very beginnings of an online help section.
The Equity Alliance at ASU's recent webinar,Building Inclusive Schools, is now available online! You can download the powerpoint presentation or the activity handouts to support your work in building teams, organizing time, space, and personnel, and shifting focus toward inclusive practices.
Gov. Beverly Perdue has proposed dumping tests not required for high school graduation or by federal law. In her proposed budget, Gov. Perdue targeted the myriad of standardized tests given to North Carolina students as excessive. Following her lead the North Carolina state Senate gave detailed list of tests to eliminate. Five high school subject tests would go – algebra II, geometry, chemistry, physics, and physical science – along with a computer skills tests given in the eighth grade; so would tests for high school students who enter ninth grade without scores on previous tests that show they can read and do math at grade level. Read about the proposed test elimination in the Raleigh News & Observer.
Project Forum has just published a brief policy analysis of state initiatives to support co-teaching practices. This report, co-authored by Eve Müller, Marilyn Friend, and DeAnna Hurley-Chamberlain, identifies the different terminology states are using, guidance that states are providing, and different models for preparing teachers to work in co-teaching teams.
On May 13, 2009, President Barack Obama delivered a rousing commencement address to the 2009 graduates of Arizona State University, NIUSI-LeadScape's home. His message was one of optimism and high expectations, and the value of doing good work. These are the ideas that drive LeadScape principals every day in their work to create more inclusive schools, and it's a message that we strive to live up to:
And as a nation, we'll need a fundamental change of perspective and attitude. It is clear that we need to build a new foundation - a stronger foundation - for our economy and our prosperity, rethinking how we educate our children, and care for our sick, and treat our environment. . . . Did you study education? Teach in a high-need school; give a chance to kids we can't afford to give up on - prepare them to compete for any job anywhere in the world.
The U.S. Department of Education recently released guidance information on how schools should use the stimulus funds provided by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
This document includes framing questions for decision making and examples of potential uses of funds to improve educational outcomes from early learning through high school. It is intended to spark ideas about how districts and schools might use ARRA funds, particularly those available under the SFSF, Title I, and IDEA Part B programs. Districts generally have up to two years to obligate these funds. While many school districts may need to use a portion of their ARRA funds to save jobs, every district and school should be considering how to use these funds to improve student outcomes over the next two years and to advance reforms that will have even longer-term impact.Examples of effective uses of funds are provided in the areas of:
Download this document to help guide your budget planning!
Dr. Carol Kindt, a founding member of our LeadScape community of inclusive school principals, has been selected as the new Senior Executive Director of Human Resources for Orange County Public Schools in Orlando, Florida. As principal of Chain of Lakes Middle School, Dr. Kindt has been transforming practices to support students of all backgrounds and abilities by focusing on rigor and relationships, including implementing Positive Behavioral Intervention Systems, training staff in effective strategies for English language learners, and continually increasing inclusive scheduling for students with disabilities. We applaud Orange County Public Schools’ excellent judgment in selecting Carol Kindt for this position, as she brings excellent understanding of how hiring talented staff members can help to create schools where all kids can be successful.
Project Director Elizabeth Kozleski demonstrated the new features of our website at the 18th Annual Technical Assistance & Dissemination conference in Washington, DC. Important developments included functional school-level data maps, a School Improvement Plan tool that includes an assessment of inclusive practices, prioritization of topics, goal setting, action planning, and assigning of tasks that are tracked on the website and may be linked to your own calendar! We also debuted our first “live data” map for Sylvan Elementary in Snow Camp, North Carolina (this data is password protected and accessible only by designated Sylvan personnel).
Also this month, LeadScape principal Michele Erickson was named Middle School Principal of the Year by the Orange County Counseling Association for her outstanding support of counseling services and programs.
In addition, Memphis City Schools' Effective Practices Incentive Community (EPIC) program recognized and its principal, Cynthia Alexander, for working with researchers to identify and document successful inclusive practices at Evans.
Congratulations, Michele and Cynthia!
Our teams of inclusive school principals from Alamance-Burlington, North Carolina, Madison, Wisconsin, Memphis, Tennessee, Orlando, Florida, Tempe, Arizona, and the White River Apache Nation in Arizona gathered for the 2009 Winter Institute in Chandler, Arizona January 20th through the 22nd. At this year's Winter Institute, we focused on everyday practices to support inclusion. Dr. Lisa Dieker from the University of Central Florida gave a full-day workshop on effective co-teaching practices. Project Coordinator Elaine Mulligan presented the NIUSI-LeadScape coaching model for supporting substantive transformation of understandings and practices to include all students. Project Director Elizabeth Kozleski led an exploration of ways to scale up inclusive practices throughout districts. Participants also explored the updated website in a hands-on session. One of the most valuable experiences of our Institutes is always the opportunity to engage with like-minded peers and share ideas and experiences around the ongoing process of expanding inclusive practices. Thanks to all who participated and who work daily to create schools where all students are valued learners.
Day one was an all-day session on Co-Teaching led by guest presenter Lisa Dieker. Day two included an introduction to our LeadScape coaching model, as well as an overview of Culturally Responsive Response to Intervention. Day three provided training and practice in using our web-based tools.
NIUSI-LeadScape is a federally funded initiative to support principals who are leading schools that seek to educate all of their students, and particularly those who challenge conventional approaches to teaching and learning. Here, we learn together to increase the capacity of schools to work with students whose languages, intellectual abilities, experiences, and behaviors stretch teachers knowledge and skills. In NIUSI-LeadScape schools, ALL students are engaged in high quality curriculum and learning experiences that result in school success and expand their life choices and career paths.
We are now accepting new schools and districts into our LeadScape community of practice. If your district is interested in improving outcomes for all students through ongoing professional learning, supportive leadership coaching, and data-based decision making, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reports detailing our activities and progress are available, including:
Our overview presentation highlights our user-friendly tools for professional learning, school improvement, and visual displays of just-in-time data to help guide decision making for inclusive schools!
A wiki is a great way to share information on the internet. Wiki is software that allows users to create and edit web page content freely. It's a great way for people who aren't necessarily technology savvy to build a website that they can easily change.
The first wiki was created in 1995. Today wikis can be found all over the internet. One of the most popular wikis is Wikipedia, an online encyclopedia that anybody can add information to.
You'll be surprised at how easy it is to create wiki content. As you type, a very simple markup language allows you to format headings, bold or italicize text, insert images, link to other pages,… and you can even access all these features (and more) just by clicking on a simple graphical button bar. Try the playground if you're ready to jump right in!