I work with a lot of principals that have accepted jobs at schools that are struggling. Without fail, someone at Central Office will give them the unwanted advice of, “Don’t overwhelm the staff with too much change.”
But when the only positive practice occurring on campus is that daily operations resemble school, not overwhelming the staff is not priority one. Turning sweat equity into measurable results is the only priority. In this case, make sure the change makes the biggest impact. This is where the Foundation Trinity is the life line and the path out of the ditch.
1.Implement the Scope and Sequence with pacing fidelity. This will wear the staff out. But if teachers aren’t teaching the right content at the right time, all you are doing is working hard at getting further behind.
2.Implement aligned, short-cycle common assessments. This will wear the staff out. But it is properly implemented common assessments that turns a poorly implemented suggestion into an actual Scope and Sequence.
3.Implement high-volume, formative classroom observations (use PowerWalks, instead of lesser systems). This will wear the staff out. But if you are not cueing new practice and problem solving based on reality (as opposed to personal agendas), you are relying on hope and luck. Hope and luck is not an actionable improvement plan.
When implementing the Foundation Trinity, by not overwhelming the staff you are accelerating the doom loop. Overwhelm the staff with the right kind of change (The Foundation Trinity) and you have initiated the Stockdale Paradox… Yes, things are currently bad, but by doing these things it will get better.
Think. Work. Achieve.
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