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Districts on the Move

Districts on the Move
Leading a Coherent System of Continuous Improvement

Foreword by Michael Fullan and Joanne Quinn, A Joint Publication With InnovateEd

September 2019 | 112 pages | Corwin
Building off the framework Fullan and Quinn introduced in the International best-seller Coherence The Right Drivers in Action for Schools, Districts, and Systems, Westover presents a roadmap to help district and school leaders navigate the journey of creating a coherent system of continuous improvement. Based on more than 15 years of successful partnerships with school districts, this book includes case studies of how districts progressed over time, leadership competencies shown to be critical factors for success, tools and rubrics for action planning and guiding implementation, and reflective questions for inquiring about the current state of district systems and practices and strategies for systemic improvements efforts.

Readers will discover Benchmarks of Capacity that will serve as guideposts to
• Create clarity of district goals and school priorities for student learning
• Cultivate a culture of shared leadership and systemic collaboration
• Develop collective expertise with a coherent instructional framework
• Engage in evidence-based cycles of inquiry for continuous improvement

Learn how to lead systemic improvement that builds capacity at the classroom, school and district levels. 

Foreword by Michael Fullan and Joanne Quinn
About the Author
Chapter 1: Creating a Coherent System of Continuous Improvement
Leading a Coherent Path of Progress

Chapter 2: Clarity of District Goals and School Priorities for Student Learning
Creating a Strategic Focus for Equitable Student Growth

Clearly Delineating Improvement Strategies

Leading Short Cycles of Improvement

The Path of Progress for Little Lake City School District

Reflecting on Key Capacity-Building Strategies

Tips for Taking Action

Chapter 3: Culture of Shared Leadership and Systemic Collaboration
Serving as a Lead Learner

Cultivating Systemic Collaboration and Co-learning

Leading From the Middle

The Path of Progress for Hesperia Unified School District

Reflecting on Key Capacity-Building Strategies

Tips for Taking Action

Chapter 4: Coherent Instructional Framework for Developing Collective Expertise
Creating Instructional Coherence

Robust Collaborative Inquiry Processes

Developing Precision of Pedagogy

The Path of Progress for Corona-Norco Unified School District

Reflecting on Key Capacity-Building Strategies

Tips for Taking Action

Chapter 5: Evidence-Based Cycles of Inquiry for Continuous Improvement
Know Thy Impact

Evidence of Learning

Continuous Improvement of Practices

The Path of Progress for Rosedale Union School District

Reflecting on Key Capacity-Building Strategies

Tips for Taking Action

Chapter 6: Leading a Coherent Path for Sustainable Growth in Learning
Rubrics and Planning Tools

Chapter 7: Building Capacity to Lead Systemic Improvement

“The individual and collective quest we all pursue as educators to lift student achievement is complicated by a blizzard of theories and no lack of self-appointed experts. It is so exciting to see the years of serious, credible, and successful work that Jay Westover and his team have done with countless school districts captured in a way that is accessible to all of us committed to student success. It is an important book that reveals meaningful, capacity building paths for district and school leaders.”

Jack O’Connell

Districts on the Move provides educators with critical insights into capacity building, which remains the holy grail for school districts in order to sustain the collaborative culture of inquiry that results in an organization focused on continuous improvement.”

David Cash
USC Rossier School of Education

Districts on the Move is a book about how school districts build systems of improvement that are larger than a person or an idea. The challenge for superintendents and district leaders is creating a culture and system of improvement that survives changes in leadership. Jay Westover’s book provides both a framework and case study examples of how district leaders can create systemic improvements that show up on the desks of students in classrooms.”

Cary Matsuoka,

“This body of work is a must-read for every educational leader, especially at the central office level. There are no easy answers to address equity in education, but there are intentional ways to build coherence and lead the work. Jay Westover has created a clear and precise framework for building capacity for whole systems change that starts from the desk of the student and moves throughout the organization. This is not a read one time kind of book, but rather a guiding resource for leaders to use in order to successfully meet the needs of all students.”

Karen Valdes

“Improvement efforts in education have prompted reforms intended to ensure that teachers and school leaders have the professional skill set and capacity to meet the educational needs of all students. However, where others have failed, InnovateEd has succeeded, creating explicit structures for school and district collaboration that develop a shared learning system of interaction. Districts on the Move enables both increased technical expertise and organic accountability systems in which dialectic practices about student learning result in strengthening of collective agreements. Professional learning in this kind of setting is purposeful and directly connected to student learning outcomes.”

Patricio Vargas
Norwalk La Mirada Unified School District

“As a teacher, principal, or district office administrator, Districts on the Move will give you a new way to look at your work. Jay Westover knows people make the difference in organizations. Systemic collaboration and co-learning leads to continuous improvement for students. Every educator has realized we can no longer be successful alone. Districts on the Move details a step-by-step process of collective implementation with practical examples every educator can use.”

Joni Howard
Corona-Norco Unified School District

“Jay Westover and the InnovateEd team have been working and learning with school districts for a number of years. He understands deeply that schools want their students to do better, and that school districts can make a great difference in inspiring, leading, and learning with schools to become more precise about the work on the students’ desks. This book illuminates powerful, practical pathways for districts and schools to increase their impact and accelerate and deepen learning for students and staff. It is a must-read for all educators who want to become better at what really matters in our classrooms.”

Mary Jean Gallagher
Key features
  • Case Studies taken from the author's work with over 300 schools
  • Leadership Competencies in Action
  • Practical Tools to put plans into action district by district
  • Reflection questions
  • Implementation steps
  • Foreword by Michael Fullan and Joanne Quinn
  • For instructors

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