By Jean Johnson with Jon Rochkind, Michael Remaley, and Jeremiah Hess

2011 Public Agenda


This is an article discussing the challenges persistently low achieving schools face in their efforts to communicate and engage with their communities. It provides a discussion of the issue as well as eight strategies that can help leaders build trust and promote more constructive dialogue

By: Cori Brewster and Jennifer Railsback

An article in

Date is unknown


This article examines issues of trust between the school and diverse families. It discusses trust, culture, and family involvement in detail, offers connections to relevant research, and discusses common challenges between schools and their communities. There are also some school case study profiles and tips for how to reach out to diverse families.


School Leadership


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Danielson, C. (2010-11) Evaluations that Help Teachers Learn. ASCD.

Many evaluation models are outdated and do not serve to help teachers grow as professionals. Danielson provides insights on how to ensure teacher quality and promote professional development through evaluation.  This article presents two challenges to consider: the need for trained evaluators and time to have professional conversations.


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The MET Project. (2014) Building Trust in Observations: A Blueprint for Improving Systems to Support Great Teaching.  Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

This how-to tool will help states and districts evaluate the current status of their evaluation tool and then develop plans for continual improvement of their observation system regardless of where they are in implementation. Action steps are included to improve observation rubrics, observer training, observer assessment, and monitoring.

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Taylor, S. (2013) Four Suggestions to Help You Lead by Relationships and Realize Your Vision. Edutopia.

This article is written by a Superintendent who explains the importance of building relationships and sharing your vision with staff and colleagues. The four tips include: making the rounds, having open relaxed conversations, providing town hall accessibility, and establishing a satellite office.

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Church, K., Hirsch, E., Sioberg, A. (2012) Improving Teaching and Learning Conditions: Promising Practices from Pittsburgh Schools. The New Teacher Center.

This brief was written by the New Teacher Center to provide schools with some promising strategies from seven schools in Pittsburgh to inform their own school improvement planning. These seven schools successfully addressed time, school leadership, managing student conduct, and teacher leadership with effective strategies.