Practice Activity: Aligning Efforts and Keeping Staff Focused on the Target
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.Align School Improvement Efforts

It is a primary role of the principal to ensure that resources, chief among them being time, are aligned with school improvement goals. It is you who determines how regularly scheduled time is used, what is monitored, what is recognized, how inservice time is used, and how the budget is allocated. As we discussed in the previous activity, one of the most important ways that principals demonstrate good alignment is the use regularly scheduled time with staff to focus on the school improvement goals.

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Principals who have been effective at aligning their school efforts understand the challenge and can give you some useful ideas.

One principal who has had some success in aligning her school's efforts is Nancy Kalin, principal of Bushy Park Elementary School in Howard County. You can listen to her discuss how she keeps a sharp focus on their school improvement goals.

The Pinellas County in Florida has implemented the Baldrige criteria in their school district. Baldrige provides a framework for aligning school improvement efforts. You may want to view the following short videos that they produced:

These videos and other resources can be found on the Illinois Baldrige Web site.

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You may also want to look at a letter that Gerry Mack (coming soon), principal at Jarrettsville Elementary School, Harford County, sends to staff to emphasize his school priorities.


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