The following seventeen characteristics were gleaned from our research and experience and are embedded in the work we do with schools.
Ways of Thinking
- Sees students, teachers, and the broader community as co-creators of the school;
- Values authentic learning work that demonstrates to students and staff their own efficacy;
- Recognizes that school extends beyond the classroom where students and staff can help solve real problems and contribute to social change;
- Taps into the human desire to create, to make meaning, to do important work, and to learn and live in community;
Ways of Doing
- Articulates and supports a bold vision of what is possible;
- Models passionate commitment to the vision and the organization;
- Creates a collaborative culture;
- Demonstrates proficiency with language including story, group process, and conversation skills;
- Builds reflection into personal and organizational practice:
- Builds leadership capacity throughout the organization;
- Supports risk-taking and openness to change;
- Nurtures personal and organizational resiliency;
- Applies systems thinking to the complexity of a learning organization;
- Attends to the learning work of every member of the organization;
- Embeds an ethic of excellence throughout the organization;
- Leads the organization in setting clear goals and plans that will advance the work of the school.
- Grounds the work of the district in an ethical and moral dimension.