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Is Your School A Learning Organization?
January 17, 2003

"Grown-ups never understand anything for themselves, and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to them."
–Antoine De Saint-Exupery


Observing that "a school culture that invites deep and sustained professional learning will have a powerful impact on student achievement," Ron Brandt offers ten ways to tell if your school invites such sustained learning. He suggests that learning organizations...

* have an incentive structure that encourages adaptive behavior;
* have challenging but achievable shared goals;
* have members who can accurately identify the organization's stages of development;
* gather, process, and act upon information in ways best suited to their purposes;
* have an institutional knowledge base and processes for creating new ideas;
* exchange information frequently with relevant external sources;
* get feedback on products and services;
* continuously refine their basic processes;
* have supportive organizational cultures; and,
* are "open systems" sensitive to the external environment, including social, political, and economic conditions.

To secure the complete text of Brandt's article "Is this school a learning organization? 10 ways to tell," which appeared in the Winter 2003 issue of Journal of Staff Development, click on www.nsdc.org/library/jsd/brandt241.html.

For a variety of articles on program evaluation in early childhood, go to the "Article Archives section at www.ChildCareExchange.com and type in the keyword "evaluation" in the search tool.


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