January 2015

School Administrator 

Cover_January

Flexing School Time

 

   

Later starts, expanded days, trimesters and even four-day school weeks

   

Features

Clearing the Snooze Hurdles
BY MERRI ROSENBERG
What strategies did three school districts employ to surmount the usual obstacles to create later school start times? By so doing, these districts are addressing what pediatric researchers have long reported about teenagers’ sleep patterns.
        Kyla Wahlstrom: Solutions for ‘sleep phase shift’
        When practical makes time shifts possible

The Extra Time Payoff
BY DAVID A. FARBMAN
How schools that use a longer day are raising instructional efficiency through a faculty’s joint planning and student sharing. The author is a senior staff researcher at the National Center on Time & Learning.
        Additional resources

Trimesters Shape a New Face to Learning
BY MARK T. WESTERBURG
A superintendent in Michigan shares an inside look at a novel form of course scheduling in a school district. Over 15 years of use, he’s found it to be a reliable vehicle for school improvement.

The Four-Day School Week
BY DEBORAH M. HENTON
The dire fiscal straits of a Minnesota district forced it into cutting a day off the instructional week, as told by the superintendent who has since moved back to a five-day schedule. She describes the initial misgivings and frustration behind a decision that was “the right thing for kids.”
        Are there savings in a four-day week?
        Talking points for a four-day plan
        Additional resources

Flexible Learning Days
BY JAY M. HAUGEN
A school district in the upper Midwest doesn’t fret over diminished class time caused by wintry weather — not when it can mobilize its technology and its staff to keep the academics on course.

Frontline

STARTING POINT
Capturing can-do stories of school districts that delayed the start of the day.

STATE OF THE SUPERINTENDENCY
Salary Cap Restrictions
The frequency of employment contracts subject to a state- or district-imposed salary limit.

BEST OF THE BLOGS
Short excerpts from the most interesting blogs maintained by AASA members.

ETHICAL EDUCATOR
Scenery or Safety?

Our panel hacks away at a dilemma involving historic trees on a school site or roadway peace of mind.

LEGAL BRIEF
BY PERRY A. ZIRKEL
Prayer at Your Board Meeting?
 

BOARD-SAVVY SUPERINTENDENT
A Board Member’s ‘Kitchen Cabinet’
BY RICHARD E. MAYER
How to react when you realize you’ve become the target of a campaign orchestrated by a scheming school board member?

MY VIEW
Our Fear of Losing Control of Distance Learning
BY KEELY COUFAL
An assistant principal witnesses irrational worrying by educators over the blending of online instruction.

MY VIEW
Gettysburg’s Lesson on Situational Leadership

BY ROBERT E. MILLWARD
What Robert E. Lee’s preference for discretionary orders can tell us about decision-making strategy in education.

Reading & Resources 

RESOURCE BANK
Practical Intelligence

Doctoral research involving superintendents in thriving and failing school districts.

WHY I WROTE THIS BOOK
AASA member Merle Horowitz, superintendent, Marple Newtown School District, Newtown Square, Pa., on co-authoring (with Dorothy M. Bollinger) Cyberbullying in Social Media within Educational Institutions (Rowman & Littlefield, 2014)

 


 

BOOK REVIEWS

                                    


 

Review - Wise Leader

The Wise Leader
by Paul D. Houston
Reviewed by
Brian L. Benzel

Review - How to Be a Positive Leader

How to Be a
Positive Leader

by Jane E. Dutton and Gretchen M. Spreitzer
Reviewed by
Jeff Smith

Review - Reign of Error

Reign of Error
by Diane Ravitch
Reviewed by
Justin B. Henry

Review - American School Reform

American School Reform
by Joseph P. McDonald
Reviewed by
Larry L. Nyland

Review - The Broken Compass

The Broken Compass
by Keith Robinson and Angel L. Harris
Reviewed by Hope Belcher

 Review - Teaching on the Education Frontier

Teaching on the Education Frontier
by Kristin Kipp
Reviewed by
Ronald A. Styron Jr.

AASA Insight 

PRESIDENT’S CORNER
Re-engaging Our Federal Efforts

BY DAVID K. PENNINGTON
AASA’s relentless efforts to push for restoring control of public education to the states and local boards of education.

EXECUTIVE PERSPECTIVE
Admiring Qualities of Schools Down Under
BY DANIEL A. DOMENECH
Impressions and surprises from an education mission to Australia and New Zealand, places with reputations for high-calibre education.

PEOPLE WATCH 
Our monthly installment of AASA members’ career moves around the country.

PROFILE
Gail K. Pletnick

BY BILL GRAVES
She engages all parties in a conservative Arizona community.

 

Plus

READER REPLY (Letters)

LEADERSHIP LITE