District Support

1
The district promotes state-of-the art strategic school designs.
  • Does your district provide a menu of school design templates for schedule, staffing, teacher teams, student groupings, and interventions that each school can match to its needs and priorities?
2
The district ensures leadership capacity to implement strategic school designs.
Does your district:
  • Provide principals with support and training to develop, implement and manage resources for innovative, strategic school designs?
  • Empower principals to hire and assign staff and make schedule changes according to school and student needs?
  • Give principals the ability to make spending decisions independently?
  • Share best practices across schools?
3
Principals have clear targets for school performance and effective resource use.
  • Do measures exist at the school and/or district level to ensure resource use is linked to improved performance?
  • Are performance and resource use targets regularly monitored and supported by district leadership?

Teaching Effectiveness

1
The district improves teaching quality by building teaching teams that maximize combined expertise.
  • Are teachers deliberately organized into teams with complementary skills and experience?
  • Do teams in all schools have at least 90 minutes of collaborative planning time per week?
  • Do teams and teachers receive support from coaches, specialists, or experts when they need it?

Instructional Time

1
The district maximizes instructional time on core academic subjects while varying time based on subject and student priorities.
Does the district help schools:
  • Maximize academic time in core subjects within the school day for students who need it?
  • Extend learning time beyond the standard school day for students who need it?
  • Use a variety of block and other scheduling options to achieve instructional goals?

Individual Attention

1
The district encourages the use of student performance data to gauge learning and adjust instruction.
  • Does the district provide teachers with effective formative assessment tools?
  • Does the district encourage teachers to adjust instruction based on student performance data?
2
The district provides schedules, groupings, and structures that create targeted individual attention and personal relationships between students and teachers.
  • The district provides schedules, groupings, and structures that create targeted individual attention and personal relationships between students and teachers.
  • Do schools use a variety of strategies (e.g., small-group instruction, tutoring, looping) to provide individual attention to students who need it?

Special Populations

1
The district implements cost-effective strategies for students with special learning needs that integrate with general education and emphasize ongoing assessment and response.
  • Do schools tailor their instructional model and approach for special populations (e.g., special education, ELL, gifted) based on the needs of specific students?
  • Does the district use Response to Intervention techniques or other interventions to support struggling students?
  • Are most special education and ELL teachers certified in core academic subjects as well?

Portfolio Management

1
The district manages a portfolio of school sizes, programs, and governance structures to meet a range of student needs and learning styles.
  • Has the district deliberately created a portfolio of school types (e.g., charter, magnet, specialty, standard) and sizes to meet students’ needs?
  • Does the district proactively match students with the most appropriate school size, structure, and program offerings?
2
This school portfolio balances cost with choice, equitable access to high-quality programs, and innovation.
  • Does the district have a clear plan for staffing small and specialty schools to balance program needs with cost-effectiveness?
  • Does the district monitor school vacancy rate and take action to maximize the use of facilities?
  • Are students with specialized programming requirements (e.g., special education, ELL, gifted) assigned to schools in a way that balances high-quality, cost-effective instruction with the need for inclusion and choice?
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