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North Carolina Guide to Strengthening Our Public Schools

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NC Guide Full Report coverThe North Carolina School Superintendents Association has released the North Carolina Guide to Strengthening Our Public Schools. Developed through a collaborative effort among superintendents representing all school districts in North Carolina, the guide presents a unified vision for reforming public education in the state. It presents six key goals and areas of strategic focus:

  1. Prepared graduates
  2. Assessment
  3. Instructional delivery
  4. Digital learning
  5. Human capital
  6. Funding for public education

Both an Executive Summary and a Full Report are available.

Virginia – The New Blueprint

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The New Blueprint for the Future of Public Education represents the response of the members of the Virginia Association of School
Superintendents (VASS) to the challenges associated with preparing students for the shifting demands of business and higher education in a dynamic global environment. Produced through extensive evaluation, discussion and consensus-building by Virginia’s school division leaders, this document provides an outline of goals, objectives and strategies for the improvement of public education in Virginia.

Next Ed Next Steps

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Next Ed Next Steps Exec Summary CoverThe Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents (CAPSS) recently released Next ED Next Steps, a sequel to Next ED, the CAPSS Transformation Project Report. Next ED Next Steps chronicles what has been done to implement the recommendations that were made in the initial report and makes recommendations as to what needs to be done to continue the work. In addition, it further articulates a vision for public education that will make it what it needs to be to educate children in the 21st Century.

Delaware Student Success 2025 plan

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Delaware Student Success 2025 plan cover imageThe Vision Coalition of Delaware collaborated with 4,000 Delawareans, including 1,300 students and recent graduates, to create the Student Success 2025 plan.

This plan envisions a landscape of equitable opportunity where all Delaware students will receive the support they need to thrive, achieve and utilize their unique skills, interests and abilities effectively in an increasingly interconnected and complex world.

The plan presents 47 recommendations in six core areas:

  1. Quality early learning for all children
  2. Personalized education
  3. Postsecondary success
  4. Educator support and development
  5. Fair and efficient funding
  6. System governance, alignment and performance

NJASA Vision 2020 Plan for Public Education in New Jersey Schools

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To help ensure that all children in New Jersey receive the best possible education, the New Jersey Association of School Administrators (NJASA) has developed the Vision 2020 plan. This is a working plan that school leaders can use to steer their districts toward creating learning-enriched opportunities and the finest educational environments within the public education system. Please watch the following video or download the Vision 2020 Plan Brochure to learn more.

Personalized Learning in Connecticut

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A Look to the Future - Cover imageA Look to the Future: Personalized Learning in Connecticut is a new white paper published by the Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents. It defines personalized learning as a subset of student-centered learning and offers recommendations regarding steps that Connecticut school districts must take in order to remove barriers and create incentives for the transformation of public education to a more student-centered model.

Illinois Vision 20/20

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Illinois Vision 20/20 Policy Brief cover imageStarting in November 2012, the Illinois Association of School Administrators (IASA) partnered with Illinois Principals Association (IPA), the Illinois Association of School Business Officials (IASBO), the Illinois Association of School Boards (IASB), the Superintendents’ Commission for the Study of Demographics and Diversity (SCSDD), and the Illinois Association of Regional Superintendents of Schools (IARSS) to develop Illinois Vision 20/20 – a long-range blueprint for improving public education in Illinois. Download the full Illinois Vision 20/20 Policy Brief or an Executive Summary in PDF format.

The Split Screen Strategy – Book

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The Split Screen Strategy Cover ImageI recently read the new book by Ted Kolderie, The Split Screen Strategy: Improvement + Innovation. Several things struck me.

In this book, Kolderie creates a framework to support a reasoned dialogue that is not only refreshing, but also has the potential to move us from an unproductive focus on people and events to a focus on ideas –  and we need more ideas.

He advocates for a realistic approach that focuses on improving the current educational system while at the same time creating space for innovation within the system. This is exactly what we need.

The perspective that Kolderie successfully articulates is consistent with what I have heard in my own recent interactions with many superintendents and other educational leaders throughout the country.

Finally, he observes that many charter schools have lost their way and no longer serve as incubators of innovation. I had not recognized this because I had over generalized my view of charters. Upon reflection, this makes perfect sense. It is essential for charter schools to return to serving as innovators.

I recommend this book to anyone concerned with improving the educational system in the United States. It is available for free download in PDF format from

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