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Models for Implementing Site-Based Management

Models for Implementing Site-Based Management


In this lesson, students explore the Dolan Model and PLC Model as operational mechanisms for the implementation of Site Based Management and Site Based Initiatives.

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Hello, and welcome to models for implementing site-based management. In this lesson, we will learn about the Dolan model and the PLC model as a means of implementing site-based management systems and initiatives. Let's get started.

Whenever you discuss multiple options, people feel compelled to choose one over the other, or share which one they think is better. Children especially love doing this. I work with elementary-aged students, and from time to time I get interviewed by them. And inevitably, since the beginning of time, the same questions are asked. What's your favorite color? What's your favorite food? Do you like cats or dogs? I've even gotten what's your favorite number?

If you're a parent with more than one child, you may have heard one of your children say, you love him or than me. As adults, we know we cannot always deal in absolutes, so having said that, here are two models for you to review. And I promise you will not be asked which one you like more.

So when it comes to models of site-based management in our schools today, two stand out. They are the Dolan model and the PLC model. The Dolan model is supported by and incorporates theories as a precursor to action. As a labor management consultant, W. Patrick Dolan knows the value of and supports shared decision making in education. This is why he created a model of site-based management that is followed today.

Like many new initiatives, Dolan recommends that site-based management be established gradually, perhaps even over a 3-year period of time, in schools to ensure purposeful implementation and sustainability can occur. It takes the involvement of many stakeholders, including administration and school board, to ensure the successful implementation of site-based management, and the Dolan model suggests as much.

Dolan suggests that a review or oversight committee at the district level be established to insure support and accountability as the first step in implementing SBM. Dolan also recommends that the next step is to begin the gradual implementation of site-based management at the school level through some established team or committee. We've seen the role of administrator change a lot in recent years, to that of a lead learner, facilitator, and shared decision maker. Dolan notes that team and role building activities are crucial to making this happen.

Dolan also makes it clear that alignment between school and district goals is crucial. Data also should play a key role in the decision making process. Quality data can help to determine the needs of the school. Data can take the form of assessments, surveys, constituent feedback, and needs assessments.

Another component that is needed in order to make this all work is ongoing training and support from the school's governing bodies. Those bodies can also fill the need for an oversight committee that will continually reflect and adjust to meet the changing needs of the district and school. Dolan also notes that when district-level support is lacking, site-based management is likely to fail in short time. This is precisely why schools considering a move to site-based management structures need to have a clear model in place, collaboratively create guidelines with district administrators and other stakeholders, and establish a system of monitoring progress toward those goals and a process of adjusting them accordingly.

Like site-based management, PLCs are all about continuous improvement and growth, ultimately leading to student achievement. They support reform, and work toward achieving school-level goals. In most cases, it's the school improvement team that takes on this role. PLCs can be organized to support site-based management, and according to Rick Dufour, there are three big ideas that need to be considered.

Ensuring that all students can learn. According to Dufour, the professional learning communities response to struggling students need to quickly identify students who need additional time and support, and then provide it. It's important to base support on intervention rather than remediation, providing students with help as soon as they begin to falter, rather than relying on such things as summer school, retention, and remedial courses.

Also, our approach needs to be directive. It's on us, the educator, to seek out the students who need the support, and provide it until they achieve mastery. Dufour's second idea is a culture of collaboration. A mantra of schools that subscribe to this philosophy is they're not your students or my students, they are all our students. It takes a village, or in this case, it takes a PLC.

As schools strive for improvement, collaborating plays a key role. You set goals-- big, small, it doesn't matter. Just set them. You review progress towards those goals. Have systems in place to gather that information. You adjust accordingly. That's when you use that information that you gathered and utilize it. And finally, you celebrate success. Be sure to include students here when applicable.

Another aspect of that collaboration is the working together to remove barriers that are preventing success. And his third big idea is to focus on results. Researcher Cassie Erkens says it best-- what gets measured gets done. All this requires hard work and commitment, but these are the not-so-little things that can lead your school from good to great.

Within a larger PLC there can be many different smaller PLCs using the same model and approach. Some examples include school improvement teams or grade-level teams, content area teams, response to intervention, and data teams, positive behavior teams, health and wellness teams, and even critical friends group. The teams that make up a school or organization should all be pulling in the same direction because they are working as a part of the whole.

Communication and alignment between these teams as well as with the larger school improvement team is the key to moving the school forward in its improvement efforts. These smaller teams like RTI and grade-level and content and so on, need to be given the opportunity to present their data and report their progress and needs to the school improvement team in order to keep moving in the right direction.

So it's time to summarize this lesson. We looked at the two major models for implementing site-based management. We looked at the Dolan model set forth by W. Patrick Dolan, and the PLC model, which is supported by Richard Dufour. Here's this lesson's food for thought. Brainstorm a list of similarities between the two models that were covered in this lesson.

To dive a little deeper and learn how to apply this information, check out the additional resources section associated with this video. This is where you'll find links targeted toward helping you discover more ways to apply this course material. Thanks so much for watching. Have a great day.

Notes on "Models for Implementing Site-Based Management"

(00:00-00:16) Intro

(00:17-00:56) Not Better, Just Different

(00:57-03:40) Dolan Model

(03:41-06:11) PLC Model

(06:12-06:48) Food For Thought/Summary