Try this tip: Measure the important things.

This week’s tip is one of Studer Group’s 9 Principles.  In my travel to partner districts lately, we’ve developed annual scorecards that identify the most important measures of school, department, and district success. On each scorecard, we also define which progress monitoring tools will best predict success on the final, summative measure and what strategic actions we’ll take to achieve our goals. All of our actions and ongoing monitoring align to the measures we select for the year, so we have to ensure we’ve picked the most important things to measure. Scorecards are a great tool for measuring progress, increasing focus, and organizing for continuous improvement.

Scorecards can also help us respond to a call to action I heard last week from Dr. Tony Evers, State Superintendent of Public Instruction in Wisconsin. Dr. Evers called on legislators, superintendents, parents, and students to “Synchronize our moral compasses.” In order for education to improve our students’ lives, we must be aligned and focused on serving every child, every day (a key phrase in the mission of the Sun Prairie Area School District). Implementing the scorecard tool can ensure that district-wide measures of our service to students and families cascade to schools and departments, and then directly into the teaching and learning objectives of each classroom. If we choose, together, to measure the important things, then our compasses will be synchronized to our most moral purpose: to educate and empower all students.

Interested in learning about using scorecards to focus, align, and achieve? To learn more, view a presentation about their scorecard from our partners in the Arlington Independent School District (TX). Check out an example of a district scorecard from the School District of Janesville (WI), another Studer Education partner. Contact us for more information about our coaching for continuous leadership development and systems improvement.

Our mission at Studer Education is to provide students with a great place to learn, teachers with a great place to teach, and parents with confidence that their children are getting a great education. Visit us online at http://studereducation.com. Studer Education is a division of Studer Group, ranked for the sixth straight year on the Best Small and Medium Workplaces by Great Place to Work® and a recipient of the 2010 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award.

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