New District Tool for Organizing School Resources

Oct 18, 2010, 10:00 ET from Education Resource Strategies

School Design: Leveraging Talent, Time and Money

Hands-on Guidance for District Leaders

WATERTOWN, Mass., Oct. 18 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Education Resource Strategies, Inc. (ERS), a non-profit leader in transforming public school districts for improved student success, in partnership with Education Week, today launched the fourth of five online resources in the series Practical Tools for District Transformation, available at edweek.org.

Developed over decades of work with leading urban districts nationwide, the ERS tools are designed to help districts fundamentally transform themselves by aligning resource decisions with strategies for success. Specifically, the tools are designed to help districts:

  • Clearly define their strategic priorities
  • Assess how well their resources -- talent, time and money -- align with those strategic priorities
  • Make resource decisions that drive improved student performance and equity

School Design: Leveraging Talent, Time and Money is a new guide and online self-assessment that serves as a district-level companion to the book, The Strategic School, written by ERS Executive Director Karen Miles and Director, Stephen Frank in 2008. "It's been exciting to see all the ways school leaders have used our book to better align their resources with their instructional vision. But schools can't do it alone," says Miles. "This new guide will help districts provide the foundation and support necessary for all schools in the district to organize talent, time and money to maximize learning."

Funded by grants from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and the Noyce Foundation, Practical Tools for District Transformation provides frameworks, principles and specific techniques for evaluating opportunities for transformation and communicating clearly and effectively with stakeholders. ERS draws from its experience to provide insights on common mistakes and smart action steps for improving resource use. District leaders can engage these strategies by downloading one of the in-depth guides and taking the interactive online self-assessment built around each guide.

To bring these resources to education leaders in every corner of the country, ERS has partnered with partnered with Editorial Projects in Education, the nonprofit organization that publishes Education Week and serves an online community of more than 1 million education professionals and stakeholders.  The series, available at edweek.org, includes:

  • School Design, Leveraging Talent, Time and Money a step-by-step guide to rethink how schools organize resources to target every dollar toward what really matters.  Plus an online School Design Self-Assessment.

  • Seven Strategies for District Transformation, a guide outlining seven key strategies for districts to improve student performance at scale.  Plus ResourceCheck, an online self-assessment tool that helps district leaders measure current resource use relative to best practices.

  • Turnaround Schools: District Strategies for Success and Sustainability, a step-by-step guide providing a practical framework to help ensure that efforts focused on improving the worst performing schools lead to sustainable improvement for all students.  Plus an online Turnaround Self-Assessment.

  • School Funding Systems: Equity, Transparency, Flexibility a step-by-step guide on how to achieve equity, transparency and flexibility in funding practices.  Plus: an online School System Funding Self-Assessment.

The final tool on The Teaching Job will be released in November, 2010.

Education Resource Strategies is a non-profit organization dedicated to changing the way people, time, and money are used in urban education so that all students receive the support they need to succeed. ERS has more than 10 years of experience working with the largest U.S. urban school systems in the area of strategic resource allocation. ERS leverages this unrivaled knowledge of the issues facing school systems to provide districts with strategic and analytic support, and to advocate for school resource use reform.

SOURCE Education Resource Strategies



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