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Who Involved

Who is typically involved on this work

A thoughtful process will lead to stronger ideas for a school and its system...

When schools successfully engage their stakeholders, plans are more likely to address the varied needs of their community. New ideas become more sustainable. A thoughtful process helps schools develop and test ideas collaboratively. This does not mean the goal is to simply please everyone. Real change is usually not that simple.


An engaging process means that lots of voices are heard, issues are surfaced and smart solutions are sought. A goal of our training programs is to help each school clarify a process that make sense for their schools community. We offer tailored training, tools and technical assistance services to:

1. School Teams -- Administrators and Teacher Leaders

2. School and District Leaders

3. Policy Makers and Community Members

4. Principal and Teacher Traning/Preparation Programs

A Great School Design Team...

To make the most of our training programs, we encourage schools to engage teams of three to four key staff. This group size is large enough to have multiple voices and perspectives and small enough to ensure that everyone is engaged. Each school should want to develop the competencies of multiple people within their school needed to manage and sustain this type of work. An ideal institute team will include people who fill the following roles (noting that some people may be skilled in multiple areas):

Decision Maker

It is essential that those who have decision-making authority support and engage in the process. If decision makers cannot participate in every in-person session or meeting, there should be be key points where decision makers attend. While the entire team needs to develop a plan they confidently "own," it is important for the decision maker to see the concept through the implemenation and refinement phases. 

Puzzle Builder

Schools may have one or two people on staff who are key puzzle builders for their schedule, space plan, etc. Sometimes this can be the principal or assistant principal. Quite often it is not. While we will work to build the puzzle-building skill set and mindset for all of the team members as part of our training, ensuring the school’s puzzle builder(s) participate is invaluable.

Process Leader

Many people will have influence of the success of the project. Some are educators, others may be operational or district staff. The long-range plan for the school should include building the capacities of multiple people to understand and oversee the school’s puzzle. Thinking about how the new model will be experienced by teachers, staff and students is critical.


Implementer(s) will focus on how the new structures will change practice to help more students and teachers to thrive. They will work to anticipate challenges and seek solutions for a successful implementation of the new whole-school design. Having someone who represents those who deal with organizational details, such as operations and logistics, can be extremely helpful on the design team.

Training Program
District Leaders
Policy Makers
Great Design Team
Puzzle Builder
School Teams
Decision Makers
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