Date

April 1–3, 2020

Location

San Francisco Marriott Marquis

Registration


Pre-conference courses


PC1. Improvement Science Basics

The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching works to build the capability of education leaders and practitioners to apply improvement science in their schools, organizations, and networks.

Improvement science combines analytic discipline and practical on-the-ground tools to accelerate progress on pressing educational problems of performance and equity. Its methods support change agents in understanding deeply problems and their causes, testing ideas for change, and spreading promising practices to new contexts. Through an improvement science approach, the “learning by doing” that occurs in individual clinical practice can culminate in robust, practical field knowledge that is capable of reliably producing quality outcomes across diverse contexts.

This pre-conference course is ideal for those seeking a comprehensive overview of the basic tenets and tools of improvement science. It will provide an introduction to the foundational concepts in improvement science, hands-on activities with key improvement tools and processes, and a case study of how this approach has been applied in education.

Objectives

After this course, participants will be able to:

  • Identify key concepts and principles that underpin the improvement science approach to change
  • Understand how aim statements and theories of practice drive improvement efforts
  • Explore how measurement is used in an improvement context
  • Describe how change ideas are developed, iteratively tested, and spread to achieve quality results reliably at scale
Presenters

Melissa Chabran, Associate, Managing Director, Networked Improvement Science, Carnegie Foundation

Other Carnegie Staff

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PC2. Organizing to Work in a Networked Improvement Community

Educators, researchers, and policymakers have struggled to find and use ways of efficiently and effectively applying evidence-based knowledge to the continuous process of solving practical, on-the-ground problems. Networked improvement communities (NICs) provide an organizational structure for mobilizing the diverse expertise needed to solve the most pressing and persistent problems that confront the nation’s schools and colleges.

This pre-conference course delves into the fundamentals of starting a NIC. Participants will learn how to engage in a disciplined approach to identifying a specific problem and analyzing the system that produces it, as well as the role and functions of a NIC hub in establishing and leading a network. Participants will also receive practical advice about how to create a culture that supports collective learning.

This course is ideal for teams who want to work on a shared problem but are not yet deeply engaged in working as a NIC. Individuals who register without a team will be organized to work with participants from other organizations during the course. Participants will get the most out of this pre-conference session if they have a basic understanding of improvement science when they enroll or are committed to gaining that understanding by completing short assignments in advance of the session.

Objectives

After this course, participants will be able to:

  • Understand how a networked improvement community approach differs from other forms of collaboration
  • Understand how to study and specify a problem so that it can be addressed using improvement science methods
  • Understand the functions and possible structures for a network hub
  • Identify key concepts and tools that will support the hub structure and network learning
  • Determine if a NIC is a viable structure for accomplishing their organizational aims
Presenters

Emma Parkerson, Associate, Networked Improvement Science, Carnegie Foundation

Other Carnegie Staff

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PC3. Using Data for Quality Improvement

Schools have made significant headway in collecting data on student learning in the interest of informing change. But how do we embed data collection and its use in the ongoing process of continuously improving practices and performance?

This pre-conference course answers this question by exploring how to develop and use measurement and data to support improvement. Participants will learn to link their improvement ideas to concrete measures to understand if and how their system is improving. They will also learn about using data to examine variation and understand systems, creating a system of measures to support improvement plans, testing and evaluating changes as potential improvements, and leveraging the related resources and routines that underpin effective data use.

This Pre-Conference Course is ideal for:
  • Educators and other district staff employing improvement science methods in their local contexts to address persistent problems of practice
  • Teachers, faculty, improvement partners, and researchers involved in networked improvement communities
Objectives:

After this course, participants will be able to:

  • Understand how to use measures to clearly see systems and more deeply understand problems
  • Consider which measures to use when creating a system in support of improvement
  • Understand how to work with partners and within NICs to design, develop, refine, and implement common measures focused on a specific theory of improvement
Presenters

Jon Norman, Associate, Managing Director, Evidence and Analytics, Carnegie Foundation

Other Carnegie Staff

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PC4. Evidence for Improvement: A Framework for Providing Analytic Support to Improvement Networks

Improvement efforts often struggle to develop a culture of learning and the strategies needed to support such a culture across an organization or network. In particular, improvement efforts commonly face challenges related to:

  1. Developing the analytic capacities required in implementing a theory of improvement
  2. Generating and sustaining social learning within and across an organization or network
  3. Navigating the complexities of the environments in which they are working to scale improvement

This course introduces the Evidence for Improvement framework, a set of approaches, techniques, and tools to aid improvement networks in overcoming these challenges. Specifically, participants will learn an integrated analytic approach to supporting improvement networks.

An additional key focus of the course will be on developing the capacity for social learning within organizations and networks. This will include the presentation of material related to the challenges previously noted, but it will primarily involve three hands-on or simulation activities focused on challenges faced by real networks. This course assumes basic prior knowledge of improvement science.

This pre-conference course is ideal for:
  • Leaders of improvement networks and their analytic partners (either internal analysts or external partners) who would preferably attend as pairs or small teams
  • Staff of philanthropic foundations who are interested in learning more about the analytic needs of improvement networks
  • Evaluators who would like to learn more about how their skills, knowledge, and expertise could be best utilized by an improvement network
Objectives:

After this course, participants will be able to:

  • Understand the framework of Evidence for Improvement
  • Identify key approaches, techniques, and tools used by analytic partners and have an introductory understanding of how they are used
  • Describe how and why analytics is important to a well-functioning improvement effort
  • Articulate the role of analytic partners and how it differs from the role of traditional evaluators
PresenterS

Kelly McMahon, Associate, Evidence and Analytics, Carnegie Foundation
Dave Sherer, Associate, Evidence and Analytics, Carnegie Foundation

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PC5. Engage to Improve—Creative Solutions for Working Better Together

Have you noticed that the best ideas often come from the most unexpected sources? And that when you feel included and engaged, you want to do the best job possible? Do you think the teams in which all members make valuable contributions produce much better results? Do you want to surface the best ideas for the problem’s your facing today? If you answered yes to these questions, then using Liberating Structures in your work is for you.

Liberating Structures are a series of fun and engaging facilitation techniques that can be used in your meetings, training sessions, and presentations. They allow teams to move past tricky problems or longstanding issues by inviting everyone to think creatively and focus on opportunities for innovation. Whatever your role, this workshop provides a valuable opportunity to practice these techniques that can help spark new ideas in your teams.

Objectives

After this course, participants will be able to:

  • Identify new strategies to enhance team engagement
  • Apply creative techniques to help teams generate ideas and solve complex problems
  • Create opportunities to empower teams, facilitate change, and inspire innovation
Presenters

Christina Krause, Chief Executive Offer, British Columbia Patient Safety & Quality Council

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PC6. Deep Learning: Engage the World, Change the World

This workshop will focus on defining deep learning (DL), providing a comprehensive framework for putting it into practice showing what cutting-edge practice looks like, and demonstrating the corresponding impact DL has on student and teacher engagement, as well as on learning outcomes.

The session will focus on the improvement approach of assessing the status quo in terms of student and teacher engagement, and immersion in learning. The steps for getting started and moving in to DL will be supported through the use of tool” of diagnosis. Participants will be helped in assessing school and district conditions in relation to deep change.

Participants will have the opportunity to examine DL in practice, study case examples of DL, and explore the question of why most current examples of DL are not deep enough. The workshop will provide an opportunity to apply a DL framework to their own context, to develop plans for testing and implementing DL, and to raise questions about the future of DL in education. The workshop will also put into perspective why DL is crucial for the future considering fundamental dangers to society and the possibility that education could play a major role for the future.

Objectives

After this course, participants will be able to:

  • Diagnose existing learning conditions with respect to engaging students and teachers
  • Design and carry out tasks that help students focus with respect to school and district conditions
  • Assess impact and develop next steps for further learning
  • Analyze the larger context in terms of what is needed to support stronger implementation
Presenters

Michael Fullan, Professor Emeritus, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto
Joanne Quinn, Director of Whole System Change and Capacity Building, Michael Fullan Enterprise

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PC7. Accelerating Improvement With Lean Management

Take process improvement learning to the next level with lean management and learn to create an atmosphere that fosters creative thinking, problem solving, innovation, and exploration. This course takes a deep dive into the underlying principles of “lean,” and identifies ways to deliver greater value, minimize waste, and continuously improve an organization.

Lean can become a powerful accelerator for improvement when implemented as a management system. In this interactive learning experience, participants will discuss lean foundational elements, including the principles, concepts, methods, and tools of a lean management system. Through this unique framework, participants will learn how to drive improvements that create value, eliminate waste, and reduce staff’s burden of work. Participants will leave with a robust toolkit to advance continuous improvement and learning, while developing their own next-steps action plan to accelerate their improvement journey.

The pre-conference course is ideal for participants seeking a comprehensive overview of the concepts, principles, and tools underlying a lean management system.

Objectives

After this course, participants will be able to:

  • Describe how the principles of a lean management system can bring greater value and higher quality to the education experience
  • Engage educators in the importance of identifying and eliminating waste to create meaningful, value-adding educational experiences for learning
  • Understand the importance of a unified improvement management system that supports quality infrastructures, goal alignment, continuous learning, and transparency
  • Identify how lean concepts, principles, tools, and methods can foster an exceptional and reliable learning experience, while accelerating and sustaining improvement
  • Apply lean tools and methods in their day-to-day business to drive improvements that create value, eliminate waste, and reduce the burden of work—all in pursuit of the perfect learning experience
Presenters

Ellen Noel, Senior Transformation Sensei, Virginia Mason Institute
Chris Backous, Senior Transformation Sensei, Virginia Mason Institute

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PC8. Coaching for Improvement

Improvement coaches support improvement teams by helping design an improvement journey, providing technical expertise and building the improvement capacity of the team. In this course, participants will learn about coaching practices that can be used to support improvement teams practice coaching core improvement routines, and work with other coaches to identify different ways to address common struggle points that arise in supporting improvement teams to get results.

This pre-conference course is ideal for:
  • People who are already familiar with improvement science
  • People who are that are actively involved in coaching improvement teams in a network or organizational setting
Objectives

After this course, participants will be able to:

  • Understand the role of an improvement coach and how it is similar or different from other coaching roles in education
  • Understand the arc of an improvement project from development to end products
  • Be able to coach key improvement routines (know what to look for and how to analyze key products, determine next steps, and choose a stance)
  • Understand common dilemmas that arise on improvement teams and practice identifying responses to these dilemmas
  • Be able to select an appropriate improvement method or activity to answer a particular question
Presenter

Alicia Grunow, Co-Founder and Improvement Specialist, Improvement Collective; Senior Fellow, Carnegie Foundation
Sandra Park,
Co-Founder and Improvement Specialist, Improvement Collective; Senior Fellow, Carnegie Foundation

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PC9. Leadership for System Transformation: Putting Research Into Practice

Wondering what improvement science looks like in a school district that has achieved results? Learn concrete strategies from educators and coaches immersed in improvement work.

In this course, leaders, teachers, and coaches from the School District of Menomonee Falls (SDMF) and Studer Education℠ will guide participants through the district’s six-year journey of developing leaders and applying improvement science to accelerate system, school, and student learning. Participants will first learn about the core principles underlying systemic improvement in SDMF and be introduced to the organization’s transformational approach to methodical, continuous improvement. Building upon this broad, system-level view, they will learn how to grow and develop leaders who can effectively lead change, empower teachers to improve student and school results through cycles of improvement, and develop students who can analyze their own challenges and make smart decisions to advocate for their own learning needs. Along the way, faculty will offer specific examples from SDMF of connecting to hearts and minds to drive results and stimulate ongoing organizational learning.

Objectives

After this course, participants will be able to:

  • Engage an elected board to understand, appreciate, and drive improvement through resource allocation and policy adoption
  • Train and coach a collaborative leadership team how to lead as a team with both their hearts and minds, through the continuous change of education institutions
  • Build aligned scorecards and agile performance metrics that drive improvement at the district, school, and classroom level
  • Report scorecard progress using a simple, 45-day cycle that supports improvement through agile adjustment to achieve results
  • Coach teachers to plan, do, study, and act with students so that each student knows and advocates for their own progress
  • Develop an improvement process to strategically deploy coaches to scale best practice in their systems using the concept of positive deviation
  • Ensure that improvement is everyone’s job, from superintendent to food service employee, from students to board members.
Presenters

Corey Golla, Superintendent of Schools, School District of Menomonee Falls
Patricia Greco, Superintendent Emeritus, School District of Menomonee Falls
Melissa Matarazzo, Lead Coach, Studer Education
Suzy Thomas, Director of Quality and Analytics, Menomonee Falls High School
Casey Blochowiak, Director of Curriculum and Instruction, Menomonee Falls High School

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