This slim volume synthesizes three reports intended to show what is possible when urban districts take learning improvement seriously. One report analyzes how districts that want to achieve equitable learning gains for disadvantaged kids allocate staff and other resources. A second report describes how school administrators and teacher leaders guide improvements in instruction, while a third focuses on the daily work of central office administrators who develop principals' instructional leadership skills.

In this summary, researchers draw conclusions from the three reports, explaining how leaders at the school and district level can best improve teaching and how they need to be supported. Key strategies include investing in staff members whose primary responsibility is coaching teachers or principals to improve instruction and providing those staffers with frequent opportunities for professional learning. The summary also explains the need for district and school leaders, including teacher leaders, to operate in a well-coordinated fashion, ground their work in shared beliefs and approaches to improving instruction, and have a thorough understanding of each others' roles and how they fit together.

 Points of Interest

  • Good instructional leaders know how to articulate learning goals for students that are more meaningful than standardized test scores. At the same time, they know to how to use external pressure to raise scores to accomplish their own agenda for better student learning.
    Good #principals have learning goals more meaningful for students than standardized test scores alone. #education
  • Districts and principals who care about equity devote more staff members or other resources to the schools, classrooms or students that need it the most.
    Districts that care about equity devote more staff or other resources to #schools that need it the most. #education
  • Central office staff can support principals by providing coaching on instructional leadership that is tailored to each school's unique needs, interests and challenges.
    #Principals need coaching on instructional leadership tailored to their school's needs and interests. #education