Saving Our Students, Saving Our Schools: 50 Proven Strategies for Helping Underachieving Students and Improving Schools / Edition 2

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This field-tested resource outlines effective approaches for improving student learning, proficiency, and achievement at all levels through learning-focused priorities, results-driven practices, and high academic expectations.

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Editorial Reviews

The Bookwatch
“Lives up to its title with 50 experience-tested recommendations. Though especially recommended for educators serving in America’s most troubled schools, this book is filled cover to cover with tips, tricks, techniques, and recommendations that even those most successful schools will find useful.”
Nancy Golden
"I always knew that all students could meet or exceed standards if we articulated the research-based practices that worked.Thisis exactly what the authors have done. We now have the tools to ensure all our students are successful—what a glorious time forschools, thanks to Robert Barr and William Parrett!"
Bill Scott
Praise for the first edition: "Barr and Parrett have provided educators, policy makers, and parents with an outstanding resource. If you’re serious about leaving no child behind, this is one book you need to read."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781412957939
  • Publisher: SAGE Publications
  • Publication date: 10/2/2007
  • Edition description: Second Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 432
  • Product dimensions: 7.07 (w) x 10.02 (h) x 1.02 (d)

Meet the Author

Dr. Robert Barr has gained national and international recognition for his research on at-risk children and youth, teacher education, and alternative schools. He is a nationally recognized speaker, consultant, and scholar in the areas of at-risk youth, school improvement, and alternative education. He has appeared twice on PBS’s Firing Line, featuring William F. Buckley, been interviewed on ABC Evening News with Peter Jennings and on the Fox News Channel’s The O’Reily Factor. He has been quoted in the New York Times, USA Today, and the Wall Street Journal, served as an expert witness at many state and federal trials, and presented testimony to sub-committees of the U.S. Congress.

Previously, Dr. Barr was Professor and Director of Teacher Education at Indiana University (1970 – 1981), Dean of the Oregon State University College of Education (1981 – 1990), Dean of the Boise State University College of Education (1991 – 1998), served for two years as a board member of the Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory, and was appointed by five governors in three states to various commissions. He served as an Idaho delegate to the Education Commissions of the States. He has received three national awards for excellence in teacher education: AACTE, Distinguished Achievement Award; AASA Showcase of Excellence Award; and the Theodore Mitou Award. He is currently a Senior Analyst with the Boise State University Center for School Improvement. Barr has had extensive international experience in Indonesia, China, Japan, Chile, and was a visiting professor at the University of Innsbruck in Austria.

Dr. Barr has worked as a consultant in school districts and Departments of Education in over forty states. Since 1995 he has keynoted over a dozen national conferences and been a featured presenter at the American Association of School Administrators and the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development almost every year during the past decade. And, with co-author, William Parrett, the National School Board Association has selected them four times since 1996 for their prestigious Meet the Expert sessions.

Barr has been widely published in almost every educational journal and is the author or co-author of eight books. Barr and Parrett have co-authored four books: The Kids Left Behind: Teaching the Underachieving Children of Poverty, in press (2006), Saving Our Students, Saving Our Schools: 50 Proven Strategies for Revitalizing At-Risk Students and Low-Performing Schools (Pearson Skylight, 2003); Hope Fulfilled for At-Risk and Violent Youth (Allyn & Bacon, 2001); How to Create Alternative, Magnet and Charter Schools that Work (NES, 1997); and Hope At Last for At-Risk Youth (Allyn & Bacon, 1996). Barr’s editorial, “Who Is This Child,” published by Phi Delta Kappan, February, 1996, was reprinted in French for distribution internationally and was nominated for a national award by the Educational Press Association. Other books authored by Dr. Barr include Alternatives in Education (Phi Delta Kappan, Bicentennial Publication, 1976); Values and Youth (NCSS, 1971); The Nature of the Social Studies (ETC Publications, 1978); and Defining the Social Studies (NCSS, 1978). Defining the Social Studies has been identified as the “single most influential book in the field of social studies.”

William H. Parrett is the Director of the Center for School Improvement & Policy Studies and Professor of Education at Boise State University. He has received international recognition for his work in school improvement, small schools, alternative education, and for his efforts to help youth at-risk. His professional experiences include public school and university teaching, curriculum design, principalships and college leadership, media production, research, and publication.

Parrett holds a Ph.D. in Secondary Education from Indiana University. Parrett has served on the faculties of Indiana University, the University of Alaska, and Boise State University. As Director of the Boise State University Center for School Improvement & Policy Studies (1996 to present), Parrett coordinates funded projects and reform initiatives which exceed $1.2 annually. His research on reducing achievement gaps and effective schooling practices for youth at risk and low performing schools has gained widespread national recognition.

Parrett is the co-author of, The Kids Left Behind: Teaching the Underachieving Children of Poverty, , Saving Our Students, Saving Our Schools (2003), Hope Fulfilled for At-Risk & Violent Youth (2001), How to Create Alternative, Magnet, and Charter Schools that Work (1997), Hope at Last for At-Risk Youth (1995), Inventive Teaching: Heart of the Small School (1993), The Inventive Mind: Portraits of Effective Teaching (1991), and numerous contributions to national journals and international and national conferences.

Parrett’s media production, Heart of the Country (1998), is a documentary of an extraordinary principal of a village elementary school in Hokkaido, Japan, and the collective passion of the community to educate the heart as well as the mind. Since its release, the production was nominated for the Pare Lorentz Award at the 1999 International Documentary Awards (Los Angeles, CA); has won the Award of Commendation from the American Anthropological Association, a Gold Apple Award for best of category at the National Education Media Network Festival (Oakland, CA), a National CINE Golden Eagle Award (Washington, D.C.), and a Judges’ Award at the 24th Northwest Film Festival (Portland, OR). In addition, Heart of the Country was an invited feature and screened at the Cinema du Reel festival in Paris (1998) and the Margaret Mead Film Festival (1998) in New York City. This work has received critical acclaim for its cinematography and insight into the universal correlates of effective teaching and learning and the power of community participation in public schools.

Parrett has also served as visiting faculty at Indiana University, the University of Manitoba, Oregon State University, Hokkaido University of Education (Japan), Nagoya Gakiun (Japan), Gifu University (Japan), and Heilongjiang University (People’s Republic of China). His consultancies include state departments, boards of education, state and regional service providers, and school districts in thirty-five states and ten nations.

Throughout his career, Parrett has worked to improve the educational achievement of all children and youth, particularly those less advantaged. Toward this goal, he has authored proposals which have raised over eight million dollars in external funding to create programs and interventions designed to help educators, schools, communities, and universities benefit from research and best practices. These efforts have positively impacted the lives of thousands of young people.

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Table of Contents

About the Authors
Part I. Accept the Challenge to Teach All Students
1. Confront the Challenges
Our Schools Have Changed
Who Are the At-Risk Students?
Compelling Conclusions
2. How Schools Fail Students and Manufacture Low Performance
Destructive School Policies, Programs, and Practices
The Myths That Perpetuate Ineffective Practices
3. Establish the Commitment to Educate Children and Youth at Risk
Take a Stand
Lessons Learned
Low-Performing Schools Can Improve
Part II. 50 Proven Strategies for Schools and Classrooms
4. Understand the At-Risk Student
Unconventional Wisdom: What Works for Experienced Teachers
Strategy #1: Recognize That Any Student May Become At Risk
Strategy #2: Predict Youth Behavior Based on Developmental Assets
Strategy #3: Appreciate the Resilient Student
Strategy #4: Address the Differences Between Boys and Girls
5. Educate Poor and Culturally Diverse Students
Unconventional Wisdom: What Works for Experienced Teachers
Strategy #5: Connect Culturally for Effective Teaching and Learning
Strategy #6: Work With the Externally Centered Student
Strategy #7: Understand the Problems of Low-Income Students
Strategy #8: Eliminate Ineffective and Destructive Interventions
Strategy #9: Use Effective Programs for Teaching Low-Income Students
6. Establish Priorities That Focus on Student Learning
Unconventional Wisdom: What Works for Experienced Teachers
Strategy #10: Develop a Comprehensive Plan
Strategy #11: Build a Profile by Collecting and Using Data
Strategy #12: Set Goals, Targets, and Timelines
Strategy #13: Create Time for Collaboration, Planning, and Development
Strategy #14: Facilitate Continuous Improvement: The Critical Importance of Results-Driven Leadership
7. Collaborate With Parents and Families
Unconventional Wisdom: What Works for Experienced Teachers
Strategy #15: Encourage Parent and Family Engagement
Strategy #16: Build Effective Partnerships Among Families, Schools, and the Community
8. Create Caring Classrooms, Schools, and Communities of Support
Unconventional Wisdom: What Works for Experienced Teachers
Strategy #17: Create a Community of Support
Strategy #18: Create a Common Vision
Strategy #19: Establish Alternative Schools
Strategy #20: Develop Small Schools and Schools-Within-Schools
Strategy #21: Provide Effective Transitions
9. Create a Climate of Respect in Schools and Classrooms
Unconventional Wisdom: What Works for Experienced Teachers
Strategy #22: Recognize Early Warning Signs
Strategy #23: Bully-Proof Classrooms and Schools
Strategy #24: Create Reentry Opportunities for Expelled Students
10. Expect High Academic Performance
Unconventional Wisdom: What Works for Experienced Teachers
Strategy #25: Motivate Students
Strategy #26: Teach to Multiple Intelligences
Strategy #27: Confront Tracking and Retention Practices
Strategy #28: Initiate Targeted Professional Development
Strategy #29: Create Career-Theme Schools and High School Academic Majors
Strategy #30: Help At-Risk Students Pass High-Stakes Tests
11. Teach All Students to Read
Unconventional Wisdom: What Works for Experienced Teachers
Strategy #31: Guarantee That Every Child Learns to Read
Strategy #32: Implement Effective Literacy Practices and Programs K-12
Strategy #33: Employ One-on-One Tutoring
Strategy #34: Start Early
Strategy #35: Redesign Grades K-3
Strategy #36: Continuously Assess Reading Progress
12. Select Results-Driven Instructional and Assessment Practices
Unconventional Wisdom: What Works for Experienced Teachers
Strategy #37: Personalize Instruction
Strategy #38: Recognize the Critical Importance of an Aligned Curriculum
Strategy #39: Select Research-Based Instructional Practices
Strategy #40: Use Homework Effectively
Strategy #41: Require Student Portfolios, Projects, and Performance Exhibitions
Strategy #42: Incorporate Technology Across the Curriculum
Strategy #43: Create Assessment-Literate Classrooms
13. Support Social and Emotional Growth
Unconventional Wisdom: What Works for Experienced Teachers
Strategy #44: Create Student Mentoring Programs
Strategy #45: Establish Service Learning Programs
Strategy #46: Teach Peer Mediation
Strategy #47: Build Self-Esteem and Respect Through Student Leadership
14. Use Community Resources and Services
Unconventional Wisdom: What Works for Experienced Teachers
Strategy #48: Embrace the Community as a Classroom
Strategy #49: Develop Communitywide, Extended-Day Programs
Strategy #50: Become a Full-Service School
Part III. Summon the Will to Leave No Child Behind
15. The Inalienable Right to a Quality Education
With Liberty and Justice for Some?
The Emergent National Consensus: No Child Left Behind
Breaking Free From Ignorance
The Fifty Strategies
50 Strategies Suggested Reading

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