"Ever since Seymour Sarason wrote his seminal book on The Culture of Schools and the Problem of Change we have known that 'culture' is at the heart of all organizational performance. But reformers keep forgetting this key fact. Kaplan and Owings' book changes all that. Here is a book the brings school culture back into the driver's seat—from the emphatic title of Re-Boot through all of the chapters the authors show clearly what culture is and how to understand and change it for the better. Now in one place you can find everything you need to know to 're-boot' you own school's culture."
Elliot Y. Merenbloom
"Efforts to reorganize, restructure, or reform a school is a difficult task at best. Change can only occur in a culture that brings together the salient factors that alter the teaching and learning processes. The authors bring numerous years of experience in educational leadership as they effectively show how principals and teachers can address the single most important component in raising student achievement—school culture."
William Richard Hall
"As a principal focused on student achievement and school climate, I am excited to take this book and begin to use the strategies and discussions to drive our conversations to a deeper and more meaningful level. The combination of the constructs of school culture, professional learning community, and teacher/community leadership provides a compelling and unique exploration of real methods to sustain student achievement and school improvement."
"Leaders looking for a fresh and practical approach to change will welcome Kaplan and Owings compelling case about the omnipresent culture of a school and the unexplainable disregard it receives in the literature and in actual school improvement endeavors."
Leslie S. Kaplan, Ed.D. is a retired school administrator in Newport News, VA and is currently a full-time education writer. She has provided middle and high school instructional and school improvement leadership as an assistant principal for instruction as well as central office leadership as a director of program development. Before becoming a school administrator, she worked as a middle and high school counselor, and these insights continue to infuse her leadership behaviors. Her professional interests focus on teacher quality, principal quality, and school finance and their relationship to school improvement and increasing student achievement. She has co-authored several books and monographs with William Owings including American Public School Finance (2nd edition); Educational Foundations (2nd edition); Leadership and Organizational Behavior in Education: Theory into Practice; The Effective Schools Movement: History, Analysis, and Application; Teacher Quality, Teaching Quality, and School Improvement; Best Practices, Best Thinking, and Emerging Issue in School Leadership; and Enhancing Teacher and Teaching Quality. Kaplan’s scholarly publications, co-authored with Owings’, appear in numerous peer-reviewed professional journals. Kaplan is co-editor of the Journal for Effective Schools, and also serves on the NASSP Bulletin Editorial Board. She is a past president of the Virginia Counselors’ Association and the Virginia Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development and presently sits on the board of Voices for Virginia’s Children.
William A. Owings, Ed.D. is currently a professor of educational leadership at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, VA. Owings has worked as a public school teacher, an elementary and high school principal, assistant superintendent, and superintendent of schools. His professional interests are in school finance, principal quality, and teacher quality as they relate to school improvement and student achievement. In addition, his scholarly publications co-authored with Leslie Kaplan include articles in National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP) Bulletin, Journal of School Leadership, Journal of Education Finance, Journal of Effective Schools, Phi Delta Kappan, and the Teachers College Record. Owings has served on the state and international board of the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD), is currently the editor of the Journal for Effective Schools, and is on the Journal of Education Finance Editorial Advisory Board. He is a frequent presenter at state and national conferences and a consultant on educational leadership, school finance, and instructional improvement. Owings and Kaplan share the 2008 Virginia Educational Research Association Charles Edgar Clear Research Award for Consistent and Substantial Contributions to Educational Research and Scholarship.
About the Authors
1. School Culture and Change as Learning
Why 40 Years of School Reform Has Not Worked (and Why Culture Re-Boot Will)
What is Culture Re-Boot?
What is School Culture?
Components of Positive School Cultures
Change as Organizational Learning
Understanding Your School’s Culture
Research: The Impact of School Culture on Student Achievement
2. School Leadership as Culture Building
Leadership as Culture Building
How Principal Leaders Transform Their Schools
Understanding the Dynamics and Resources for Culture Re-Boot
How Principals Can Prepare for Culture Re-Boot
Research: Principal Leadership and Student Achievement
3. School Culture, Ethical Behavior, and Relational Trust
School Culture and Ethical Behavior
School Culture and Relational Trust
Building Relational Trust with Parents
Research: Trust and Student Achievement
4. Developing Professional Capacity and Shared Influence
Why Schools Should Develop Professional Capacity
Building Teachers’ Instructional Capacity
Building Teachers’ Leadership Capacities
Where We Go From Here
Research: How Building Teachers’ Capacity Improves School Outcomes
5. Establishing a Student-Centered Learning Culture
Why We Need to Educate Every Child to High Levels
A Safe and Orderly Learning Environment
Academic Press and Supports
6. Promoting and Creating Strong Parent-Community Ties
Family Involvement and Student Outcomes
Challenges of Working with Parents in Culturally Diverse Communities
Ways to Involve Families with Schools
Working with the Community
7. Developing a Plan for Action