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Inventing Better Schools
by Phillip Schlechty ($17.50)
Phillip Schlechty argues that schools must change or become obsolete, and that central to this change is a radical rethinking of old rules, roles, and relationships. The author leads parents, teachers, board members, school administrators, and community leaders through the difficult process of improving schools. He shows how to implement reform by developing a mission statement, setting goals, assessing results, and creating the support for change. Defining this work as a process of altering systems of rules, roles, and relationships that govern behavior in groups, Schlechty points out that reinventing schools must be looked on as a continual process. The book draws on Schlechty's experience in boardrooms and legislative halls and from his hands-on work implementing school reform. Included are samples of actual mission statements and strategic plans of successful school districts.
From the inside flap:
In this powerful wake-up call to educators, Phillip Schlechty argues that schools must change or become obsolete-and that central to this change is a rethinking of old rules, roles, and relationships. Inventing Better Schools offers a plan of attack that is thoughtful, practical, and full of step-by-step advice. Schlechty shows both educators and parents how to envision reform and design quality educational systems. He explains how the visioning process must be rooted in real shared beliefs, how mission statements must unpack visions into concrete goals that are connected to action, and how the results of reform can be usefully assessed. He points out that reinventing schools must be looked upon as a continual process-and provides leaders with the tools to negotiate their way through it.
Drawing on the author's vast experience in the day-to-day work of implementing school reform, Inventing Better Schools offers new approaches for setting standards and ensuring accountability-and includes samples of actual mission statements and strategic plans of successful school districts.
What People Are Saying...
Inventing Better Schools is a winner of the National Staff Development Counsel Book Award.
"Schlechty marshals readers through the ideas-to-action labyrinth of improving schools...A worthy successor to his earlier work."
The American School Board Journal
"A book filled with hope. . . . Not all reformers in the country will agree with Schlechty's solutions or even the problems, but they will be the richer for having read what he has to say on the subject."
"Schlechty adds a refreshing voice to the ongoing how-to-fix-our-schools debate. . . . Highly recommended."
"Schlechty offers a clear and concise vision of systemic change to address the problems with education."
The School Administrator