Trailblazing and Pioneer
Transforming student and learning supports begins with rethinking how all
available learning support resources can be deployed most effectively in
addressing barriers to learning and teaching.
In support of the National Initiative, our Center is compiling information about places across the country where beginnings have been made that have relevance for developing
a unified and comprehensive system of learning supports.
Pioneering and trailblazing efforts across the country are increasing clarity about the type of systemic changes that are required to succeed. They represent the most ambitious and comprehensive "out-of-the-box thinking." Such efforts are addressing four key, interacting considerations that must be the focus of new directions thinking. First and foremost, they are concerned with
- revisiting school improvement policies to expand them in ways that will end the marginalization of student
and learning supports
- adopting intervention frameworks that unify and guide development of a comprehensive,
equitable, and systemic learning supports component at every school
- reframing the infrastructure at school, complex, and district levels to ensure effective leadership, redefine roles and functions, and establish resource oriented mechanisms
- developing strategic approaches to enable effective systemic change and
replication to scale.
Trailblazing and pioneering efforts provide an intriguing glimpse into the future of student support and offer invaluable lessons learned. Some have taken their first implementation steps; some are in the planning stage.
Besides providing indications of how to proceed, the following demonstrate differences in operationalization of a unified and comprehensive approach to addressing barriers to teaching and learning and re-engaging disconnected students. A few that have started have encountered difficulty generating the type of momentum necessary to produce full blown systemic change, especially when leadership changes undermine sustainability. (Re. minimizing the problem of succession, see Leadership Changes: Minimizing the Downside.). All provide lessons learned.
The material provided here offers a small set of instructive examples. Each month, we are hearing about other places that are moving in new directions. As we learn about these, we reach out for information and to offer support. We look forward to adding more and more useful examples.
Click on the links below for information and resources related to transforming student
and learning supports at school, district, & state levels. The trailblazing examples focus on broad-based systemic designs and initiatives; the other examples provide lessons learned from some specific innovations reported in recent years.
Want help in Transforming Student and Learning
To support the efforts of those developing a unified,
comprehensive, and equitable system of learning supports, the Center offers free
mentoring, coaching, and technical assistance by email and phone with teams that
are moving this work forward. All this is done at no cost to those who are
pioneering the work. Those making such systemic changes have found it
particularly helpful when we work with them in preparing a design document and
strategic plan for the work in ways that integrate the transformation into
district and school strategic plans and implementation.