Recommendation Three:
Encourage the inclusion of teachers in community, school, district, and state level discussions related to helping all students learn at the highest possible levels.


Role Group Strategies

Engage with schools to advocate for teachers serving in leadership positions in their schools and districts.  Affirm your belief in the role of teachers as experts in teaching and learning

Community Partnership Resource Page
The George Lucas Educational Foundation.
This webpage provides a variety of resources from the George Lucas Educational Foundation (GLEF) on school and community partnerships.  It includes articles describing programs in specific school districts and research on the importance of community involvement in general.

The Exponential Results of Linking School Improvement and Community Development:  Collaborative Strategies for Revitalizing Rural Schools and Communities
Southwest Educational Development Laboratory (2000)
This issue of their Benefits newsletter outlines eight basic steps for getting a collaborative group going.  The rationale for each step is provided, along with suggested actions that school leaders can take to ensure success.  While intended primarily for rural schools, the suggestions and examples are of value to anyone interested in taking practical steps to strengthen school-community partnerships.

Helping Every Student Succeed: Schools and Communities Working Together
Study Circles Resources Center (2002).
This tool explains how study circles engage community members in school improvement efforts and provides the discussion materials necessary for a series of four study groups. Group discussions begin with consideration of what each participant considers a “good education” and progresses to deciding upon specific actions for change.

Leadership Matters:  Building Leadership Capacity
Barkley, S., Bottoms, G., Feagin, C.H., and Clark, S.  (2001).
This guide outlines practical strategies for building leadership capacity in schools that pertain to administrators, teachers, students, parents, and the community.  It also includes a description of the importance of establishing a shared vision and a checklist that can be used to evaluate the supports that a school has in place to encourage risk-taking by teachers and administrators.

Redefining the Teacher as Leader
Usdan, M., McCloud, B., and Podmostko, M. (2001). Institute for Educational Leadership.
This report examines the potential power in enabling and encouraging teacher leadership.  It discusses roadblocks to teacher leadership, shares promising practices from districts around the country, and provides a list of “Suggested Questions” that communities can use to start discussions related to teacher leadership within their districts.

Deliberating about Education:  A New Policy Tool?
Southwest Educational Development Laboratory. (1999, December).  Insights on Education Policy, Practice, and Research 10.
For fundamental changes to occur in American education, conversations must involve all stakeholders from policymakers to parents and teachers.  These types of conversations are often difficult to create and sustain because participants often don’t understand their own roles or the roles of others in the process of dialogue.  This article from the Southwest Educational Development Laboratory outlines a “long-standing model for public engagement known as deliberative dialogue.”  The document explores the potential of deliberative dialogue to enhance communication between policymakers and the public.


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