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Introduction—A Handbook for High Reliability Schools
HRS Leadership Tools

Introduction—A Handbook for High Reliability Schools

The Next Step in School Reform

Read the introduction to Dr. Marzano’s optimistic view of the future and his recommendations for reaching the highest levels of school effectiveness. A Handbook for High Reliability Schools: The Next Step in School Reform integrates four decades of Dr. Marzano’s work into one comprehensive school improvement framework.

This is not a new program. Rather, this framework organizes existing findings on a wide variety of issues such as teacher and school leader development, instructional strategies, assessment and reporting, and more within one model. It identifies and explains five levels of performance that define a high reliability school:

  1. Safe and Collaborative Culture
  2. Effective Teaching in Every Classroom
  3. Guaranteed and Viable Curriculum
  4. Standards-Referenced Reporting
  5. Competency-Based Education

Leading and lagging indicators are provided to give school leaders clear guidance about specific steps to achieve each level. Throughout, Dr. Marzano reviews the research for each recommendation and translates that research into concrete strategies and systems that you can immediately use to increase your school’s reliability and effectiveness.

Free 14-page PDF
  • High Reliability School and the school improvement process

    by Shelli P. on Apr 2, 2014

    After reading the introduction and watching the webinar of A Handbook for High Reliability Schools, I realized how much this supports our continuous school improvement plan. Our plan includes a culture goal, effective teaching strategies, and following curriculum maps to ensure a guaranteed and viable curriculum. This past year, we have used proficiency scales based on standards and unit goals to make sure we are using standards-referenced grading and reporting. Students have been involved in tracking their progress and setting goals regarding to movement on proficiency of standards as well. This book is a great guided to assess what are lagging indicators are so we can form study task forces to address our next areas of growth. School improvement leaders and teacher-led teams would benefit greatly from this book.
  • Great work!!!!

    by Toureno on Mar 18, 2014

    I found this book very interesting, and I am excited to see the finish product. It's about good research, common sense, and most of all it is about doing the right things for student achievement. Programs only last as long as the money exist.
    It takes people who are professional and is willing to do the hard work. This is what this book speaks to me.
    In a nut shell, it's about getting the right people on the right bus, and pointing the bus in the right direction.
  • Becoming a High Reliability School is a valuable guide to improving schools.

    by Larry F. on Jan 9, 2014

    A few years ago I had several opportunities to attend workshops where Jack Grayson, founder of the American Productivity & Quality Center (APQC), helped me understand the importance of measuring the effectiveness and efficiency of processes and programs in schools and school districts. While working to support school and district improvement initiatives at the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, I found it difficult to convince fellow educators, both at the Department and in school districts, of the value of Grayson's central message to support improvement efforts.

    Based on the extensive research of Marzano, Hattie, and others, Becoming a High Reliability School provides a rationale for and brings clarity to program and process evaluation in schools and school districts. The framework is based on a "Hierarchy of School Factors" and suggested leading and lagging indicators for each factor. Both the hierarchy and indicators are based on research findings that have identified best practices for effective schools.

    School leaders who are ready to take "the Next Step in School Reform" will find this publication an invaluable resource.

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