Systems/Continuous Improvement Theories

Topics: Education, High school, School Pages: 7 (2133 words) Published: June 20, 2012
Systems/Continuous improvement theories

Systems/Continuous improvement theories
Today, leadership is a major topic that is being explored from various vantage points. There are plethora’s of organizations that are reviewing and restructuring their leadership infrastructures, seeing that particular researchers are identifying models that are becoming less effective in regards to influencing the growth of an organization as well as individuals. One organization or institution that is slowly crawling towards changing its leadership model(s) that it employs is the educational system. Therefore, this particular paper will highlight the educational system, in particular within the Fort Worth Independent School District; furthermore, it will highlight the following points: 1. Identify and defend what you believe to be the most pressing issue facing schools today. 2. From the school improvement theories described in the readings for this module, select and justify the one that would work best to remedy this issue. 3. Describe how to apply the school improvement theory to the identified issue. 4. Discuss the extent to which educational leaders have used this theory to solve similar educational issues. Include instances in which they were successful and instances in which they were not. 5. Address how leaders can integrate these theories with the Effective Schools Framework for the support of sustainable change.  

The particular organization that will be highlighted in this paper is the Fort Worth Independent School District. A historical change that transpired in the district occurred when the previous superintendent (which just resigned last month) began her term. She began in July of 2005 and upon beginning her term with the district, which is usually unlikely today, she began to emphasize the need for teams and leadership collaboration, from the central office to the campuses. This change was a historical change seeing that before she arrived the leadership infrastructure emphases as well as practices that were operative within the district were hierarchical. When the superintendent began her term she emphasized more vertical as well as horizontal alignment within school clusters or pyramids in order for campuses to begin to dialogue more effectively about student performance and processes. This change was historical seeing that many of the campuses isolated themselves from each other, which caused major issues seeing that "one hand did not know what the other was doing.” In addition, there was not a lot of dialogue on campuses regarding student performance or the climate of the campus. Furthermore, according to McAdamis (2010) she highlights that improved student learning occurs when educators learn through collaborative conversations with others about their practice. Therefore, the superintendent along with those she brought along with her began to emphasize the need for leadership teams and collaboration.  In regards to change within the organization, before the superintendent resigned, she emphasized the need for individuals that apply to be in leadership capacities to go through more strenuous and rigorous processes. Initially, applicants desiring to be in leadership capacities applied for the positions; however, the process and questioning was simple and not rigorous in regards to the processes and goals of the district. Therefore, now they are beginning to and will continue to add more strenuous requirements and hurdles (if you will) that individuals must pass in order to serve in a leadership capacity.

In reference to the change model that was employed during the process, the district implemented the Continuous Change Model. According to Lawrence, Dyck, Maitlis, and Mauws (2006), they identify this model as having four stages which are: 1.  The articulation of a new idea;

2.  The focus is on changing the practices and...
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