A school Superintendent was concerned with a stubborn academic achievement gap among schools in his district.

The Superintendent needed a skillfully designed study of the underperforming schools to pinpoint the root causes of underperformance. Providing the client the requested data involved designing and conducting School Quality Reviews - robust qualitative and quantitative studies of individual schools in which our research team gathered and analyzed school-wide data, identified data trends, distilled findings and made written recommendations for school improvement.

Outcome: The Superintendent used study results to create an informed strategic plan for district improvement and increase his political capital with the Board of Education.

A sub-district of 35 schools in a large, urban, public school district was in drastic need of improvement.

One third of the schools had not met mandatory academic accountability standards for several years. The State Department of Education threatened to sanction the district with termination of Principals, forced school restructuring, and loss of revenue. Improving the schools involved analyzing multiple forms of system-wide and school data, developing a strategic regional plan, training case management teams, and offering technical assistance to Principals and school leadership teams in the areas of data analysis for instructional improvement.

Outcome: The schools developed and implemented practical school improvement plans, tracked their progress within increased accountability frameworks, and nine of the twelve underperforming schools made academic Adequate Yearly Progress.

A charter school had its charter license revoked due to poor fiscal, organizational and leadership performance.

After a legal challenge, the authorizer renewed the charter with strict conditions, which included the appointment of a new Board of Directors. A two-year initiative to improve the Board’s governance skills included developing systems and tools for the appraisal of the school leader, training the Board of Directors in new accountability systems, advising the CEO and Board on best practices in the organization and management of charter schools, and strategic planning.

Outcome: The school was able to comply with the terms and conditions of the charter renewal agreement, stabilize operations, and develop the Board’s capacity to support the school in fiscal, organizational and leadership growth.

A newly appointed Head of School wanted to survive the difficult time of his personal leadership transition.

He was appointed hastily when the previous Head of School was terminated due to unsatisfactory fiscal and ethical performance. The new school leader lacked experience and skills in communication and leadership. Coaching and mentoring this client focused on him learning theoretical leadership frameworks, improving perceptual analysis, developing a leadership transition plan, and improving critical communication and team leadership skills.

Outcome: The Head of School applied new learning effectively to his role, grew as a leader in the targeted mentoring areas, reported feelings of increased competence and confidence, and gained the trust of the Board of Directors.