2022 is coming to a close—and it wasn’t exactly what we hoped for. We’re all headed into the holidays needing rejuvenation and connection. At the same time, we're so inspired by the amazing work that our district, state, and school partners and peer organizations are doing. It’s humbling and heartening to recognize the creative, nimble ways they've met this challenging moment and the bright spots that are emerging amidst continued challenge.
As we step back and reflect on the year, here are some of the big ideas we've been thinking about:
- We’re in a unique moment that’s ripe for truly transformative change in the way we “do” school and how we organize districts to enable new models. Pre-pandemic, we already knew that we needed to reorganize schools to meet each student's learning needs; allocate more and strategic resources to students with greater learning needs; make curriculum more relevant and instruction more engaging; and ensure every student receives great teaching. The widespread unfinished learning we’re seeing—underscored by the NAEP results—reinforces the urgency of our actions. Leaders and their communities across the country are ready to challenge the status quo and break out of the box by leveraging the disruption of “normal schooling” and an unprecedented infusion of ESSER funds.
- It’s important to also take time to reflect and plan for the long haul. In this work, we often move at a breakneck pace to match the urgency of the work. But taking time to pause, evaluate, consider, and adjust is just as critical.
- Small steps lead to big change. That’s the crux of our “Do Now, Build Toward” approach—start with a big vision, then take doable, meaningful steps in service of the goal. We can’t do it all…but we can do a whole lot when we act strategically and sustainably.
As you begin to prepare for the new year, we hope you’ll take some time to read some of the resources below to help ground your priorities:
Looking Ahead to sy23: Tools and Resources
Not sure how to evaluate and refine your ESSER strategy for 2023?
Feeling overwhelmed about needing to enable truly transformative change in 2023?
- Learn about our "Do Now, Build Toward" approach that involves taking small steps grounded in data and research now to address critical needs and build toward an inspiring vision.
- Some starting points are more powerful than others. Consider our catalytic levers to identify the right initiatives and strategies to start with.
- See how three school districts used a "Do Now, Build Toward" approach to implement high-dosage tutoring.
Can't-Miss resources from 2022
Wondering how to make the teaching job in your district more attractive, rewarding, and sustainable?
Want to know how to keep resource equity at the forefront of all your investments and strategies?
Top Stories from our district partners
We're proud to share some of our district partners' success stories from 2022. See what enabled their success and how you can use it as inspiration to enable transformation in your district:
- Read about how Holyoke Public Schools engaged its community directly and authentically in its strategic planning process to create full alignment on a bold plan that will guide them over the next few years.
- Tulsa Public Schools redesigned its school planning process when the pandemic disrupted their initial efforts. Read how district leaders adopted a continuous improvement approach that used key levers to connect its vision to a strong strategic plan and sustainable implementation
- Texas school district Pawnee ISD utilized an Additional Days School Year (ADSY) strategy to provide staff with professional learning opportunities and students with outdoor learning experiences. Learn how their focus on scheduling impacted their commitment to professional development.