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ERIC Number: EJ831094
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 7
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 5
ISSN: ISSN-1931-6569
Think Systemically, Act Systematically
Parsley, Danette; Galvin, Mike
AASA Journal of Scholarship & Practice, v4 n4 p4-10 Win 2008
In an effort to be comprehensive, schools often outline sweeping plans for improvement in multiple goal areas. Although well-intended, the efforts may be either too diffuse to have much impact, or so overwhelming that staff become immobilized. A school that chooses to proceed in too limited a manner, on the other hand, may run the risk of obtaining only partial or temporary success, without the necessary system supports in place to support long-term sustainability. How can schools strike a balance between these two extremes? School improvement specialists at Mid-continent Research for Education and Learning (McREL) suggest that schools can begin operating from a systems perspective while tackling real, pressing challenges by designing and implementing a "fractal improvement experience"--a manageable, carefully designed change initiative that is meant to help staff members gain skills in thinking systemically and acting systematically while building a sense of collective efficacy and making measurable progress. This article provides an overview of the fractal improvement experience and includes some tips for designing and implementing a fractal improvement experience. (Contains 2 figures.)
American Association of School Administrators. 801 North Quincy Street Suite 700, Arlington, VA 22203-1730. Tel: 703-528-0700; Fax: 703-841-1543; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A