A shared vision and responsibility for outcomes, supported by well-prioritized resource.
Strategic Alignment and Coherence requires defining and articulating a vision and core values for which all adults share ownership and which guide how resources are deployed.
Framework Learning Series: Strategic Alignment and Coherence
To maximize learning, how resources such as manpower, time and money are allocated should be consistent with the vision, values and priorities of the organization. Furthermore, all adults must share responsibility for the outcomes of decisions and actions. While there are always barriers and constraints, the impact of each educator's efforts is enhanced or diminished by the degree to which it builds on, or contradicts, the efforts of others. In the most effective classrooms, schools and districts there is a high degree of consistency in the beliefs and actions of all adults and a commitment to work collaboratively to achieve the same ends.
Teachers21 can work with districts to establish a shared vision and to articulate core values, assist districts in reviewing how resources are allocated, and help implement an infrastructure that supports shared responsibility for outcomes.
VISION AND CORE VALUES
In schools and districts with Vision and Core Values, there is...
- a shared understanding of priorities and expectations and why they are important
- agreement about the types of practices that can help us achieve our vision
- an understanding of how the dots connect, how our diverse actions result in the intended outcome
- an expectation that all members are united toward that vision
- a level of consensus that comes across through community members' actions
- Note: A community's Vision and Core Values only leap off the page (go from being words to enacted reality) when the resources required are present and people arise to assume shared responsibility for putting effort toward it.
Resource Optimization is a process of ensuring that even in a climate of limited resources, individuals have what they most need to do their work well. It requires difficult decisions that must be made with a central focus on the vision.
In schools and districts with Resource Optimization, there is...
- a recognition that the allocation of resources (time, people and money) reflects the priorities, vision and core values
- a commitment to maximizing efficiency and eliminating waste
- an effort to identify and capitalize upon resources in the community (incl. through partnerships)
- attention to seeking technology solutions that can improve effectiveness and/or efficiency
- recognition of expertise as the community's most important resource for improving teaching and learning
Note: A determination of resource allocation as "optimal" should be made relative to the community's vision and core values. Since everyone within the community uses resources, resource optimization is a shared responsibility.
In schools and districts with Shared Responsibility, there is...
- a belief that every individual can and does make a difference
- an assumption that the impact a united group can have together is more significant than the efforts of individuals
- a shared sense of accountability for results
- attention to the ways power and formal authority can support and limit community members' willingness to share responsibility
- an understanding that shared responsibility eases the burden on all and serves all students better
Shared Responsibility is not possible unless the community's members have agreement on the vision of what they are responsible for and why. In addition, members will be unwilling to take responsibility for improvement unless they believe the basic resources and conditions are present.
to discuss what we can do to support strategic alignment and coherence in your school or district.