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READY: Prepare for Planning

Effective planning begins when we set the stage for collaborative work. Taking time to organize helps to ensure that this process is meaningful, inclusive, and grounded in equity.

Within this section, there are tools that support the establishment of teams and structures critical to continuous improvement, as well as resources on how to engage a steering committee, and review the role of vision in the planning process.

The first step in establishing structures is to adopt an improvement process or a plan for change.  In Pennsylvania, we have adopted the Cycle of Improvement grounded in our Theory of Action for School Improvement.

Learn more about Establishing Structures

While it is extremely important that all members of the school community are knowledgeable about their roles and responsibilities in the work of continuous improvement, school leaders are encouraged to carefully consider who might be best suited to serve on their school’s improvement team. 

Learn more about Establishing Teams

Organizing for collaborative work is ongoing and not something that is done only at the beginning of the year.  For CSI and A-TSI designated schools, the submission of a school improvement plan is part of the rhythm of a school year.  And, while stakeholder engagement is something that is emphasized throughout the entire continuous improvement process, sharing the composition of the steering committee within the school improvement plan document is a requirement of ESSA.

Learn more about Steering Committees

Effective schools have a clear direction that informs the work of all staff. Establishing an agreed-upon vision for the school is the first step in plan development. The vision should embody the school community’s best thinking about teaching and learning. A school needs to know where it wants to be in order to improve. The vision provides all stakeholders with a common direction for growth, something that inspires them to continuously strive to better meet students’ needs. An important reminder is that a vision should be measurable and linked to data.

Learn more about Vision for Learning

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