What IS Systemic Change?

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Molalla River "BoardWatch" Website

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Since the Board of Education will no longer be providing video-taping for cablecast (effective July, 2002), suspended delivery of the "Molalla River Reporter" and stopped communication with the "Educational Ambassadors" (September, 2002) I have tried to provide information regarding education concerns for interested persons:

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Oregon School Boards Association (4/18/99)

Dropouts: 21 Things Districts Can Do


  1. Make school dropouts a district wide concern, and focus on changing institutions rather than changing individuals.

  2. Intervene early. The timing of interventions is critical, i.e., in preschool and middle school. Continuity of effort must be maintained.

  3. Set and communicate high expectations.

  4. Select and train teachers who are interested in working with at-risk students.

  5. Recognize that there is no one solution to this problem; risk factors are interrelated. Provide a broad range of instructional programs to accommodate students with different needs.

  6. Provide a package of services within each community. Work with families, churches and other community organizations to develop a collaborative program for dropout prevention.

  7. Encourage and support programs that motivate parents to participate at all levels of their children's education.

  8. Establish strong permanent alternatives as part of a comprehensive strategy of dropout prevention. Alternative schools should be high-status organizations, receiving resources commensurate with the tasks they undertake and the success they demonstrate.

  9. Develop and implement a collection system for data on dropouts, and use it to identify groups at risk, set policy and fund programs at the national level.

  10. Train staff in methods for identifying at-risk youth.

  11. Focus on a team approach for working with at-risk youth.

  12. Develop model programs with parents, teachers, business, government, and community participation.

  13. Educate children to meet the changing demands of a technological society, not just to get a job in today's market.

  14. Provide curriculum that is process oriented as well as content oriented.

  15. Strengthen model programs for disadvantaged youth by providing a summer component.

  16. Conduct broad-based needs assessment and planning efforts that include parents, students, businesses, and social agencies working with youth and community organizations, as well as teachers and school administrators.

  17. Provide dropout prevention activities for all levels, K-12, with an emphasis on early intervention.

  18. Review and revise as necessary organizational variables, policies and procedures affecting the school's ability to meet the needs of high-risk youth. This should include review of student-teacher ratios, discipline policies and procedures, absenteeism, truancy, suspension, failing grades, and retention policies.

  19. Expand networking as the capacity to create linkages across groups. The dropout problem is a community, business, economic and social problem.

  20. Select staff based not only on subject area competency, but also on the ability and desire to provide a respectful caring environment that responds to the needs of the whole child.

  21. Build into the program ongoing staff development as well as evaluation and feedback.