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Improvement Science as a Tool for School Enhancement: Solutions for Better Educational Outcomes is a collection of equity-focused improvement science-in-action, school-based case studies led by practitioners. Chapter authors tell us how and why improvement science principles make system-wide improvements in classroom practice, how they learned from the problems encountered and, further, how they were then able to make changes within a school or district. A core principle of improvement science is variability in context (what works for whom and under what conditions)--a critical concept for improvement in each of the case studies. Each team analyzed their problem of practice from the perspective of the unique conditions in their context, considering what might work, and what might not work, and when the changes could be expanded for implementation school- or district-wide.
Early chapters describe the actions of school personnel to embed social and emotional learning as well as how to serve historically underserved students during disasters. Trauma-informed and restorative practices embraced by all staff enhanced student outcomes and reduced educational disparities in classrooms and throughout the school. The content then explores how improvement science change processes improve chronic absenteeism and discipline issues through whole-school practices related to school climate. Centering student and family perception, developing representative systems, and facilitating collaborative improvement projects were found to measurably improve the experience of students, increase equity, reinforce democratic principles, and empower school stakeholders, especially those whose voices have historically been ignored, to create meaningful system-wide school improvement. Finally, the material in the book provides concrete examples of improvement science as it applies in real-setting to address high school advisories, graduation rates, services for multi-lingual learners, students with disabilities, and reading clubs. Each chapter has an equity focus.
The editors and contributors provide examples of how to use the processes and tools of improvement science to increase equity system-wide. How to use improvement science to address educational disparities system-wide with urgency, commitment, and a belief in the success of every child, of every race, every ethnicity, gender, ability, and cultural identity, is the essence of this book.