The School Positive Change Toolbox
Adopting new practices to better support student learning can have a positive impact in your school, sometimes even rapidly, but this takes time and requires effort. This toolbox is designed to help you in introducing new approaches to teaching and learning by helping you define goals and the steps to achieve them.
Introducing change in my school
COVID-19 has put pressure on school leaders to adapt quickly to emergency remote schooling. However, as a school head, your role is not only to react to problems and change, but also to lead school improvement. Adoption of new practices at whole school level calls for most school staff to change their usual ways of teaching. Although they might be aware of the benefits of the new practices, it is a different matter to actually make the change at whole school level.
What do you think you need to do to encourage teachers in your school to give the desired change a try?
If you decide to implement a new practice in your school, particularly digital formative assessment, this toolbox can help. It has been designed to help you define goals, the steps to achieve them, and the potential benefits and risks of your plan. The approach is based on the Theory of Change (ToC).
What is the Theory of Change?
The ToC is a widely used method for planning social innovations. It is used by many educators aiming to improve teaching and learning. It is a framework to guide reflection, guiding you to answer questions you might have about who to involve and which school processes to adjust. Much more than a simple checklist it is a structured and easy to use guidance tool helping you bring about the change you aim for in your specific context.
How to drive change in my school?
Why can change be difficult?
Why are some people more accepting of change while others are more sceptical? It is important to understand why some teachers resist making changes in their practice. Here are some reasons why.
The toolbox offers a clear template structured around 8 rubrics, describing the steps needed to bring about positive change. This tutorial animation video explains how Michael, a school leader from Denmark, completed this template. The template is adapted to the school context from Nesta’s Theory of Change toolkit.
If you would like to learn more about school leadership, check out the free online course “Learning Leadership for Change” which also provides some Theory of Change exemplar action plans from school heads.
Completing the templateWe invite you to create your own Theory of Change plan to introduce DFA practices in your school. Download the template here and check out Michael’s completed example here. See below for an explanation of each field to fill in the template.