7 Common Themes Among Effective Schools

1. Clear School Mission

There is a clearly articulated school mission through which the staff shares an understanding of and commitment to instructional goals, priorities, assessment procedures and accountability. Staff accept responsibility for students' learning of the school's essential curricular goals.

2. Professional and Instructional Leadership

The school management has the strength of purpose, involving proactive management, an emphasis upon recruitment of people who 'fit' the school. The principal acts as an instructional leader and effectively communicates that mission to the staff, parents, and students.

3. Frequent Monitoring of Student Progress/ High Expectations for Success

Students’ academic progress is measured frequently through various assessment procedures. Assessment results are used to improve individual student performance and the instructional program. There is also a climate of expectation in which the staff believe and demonstrate that all students can attain mastery of the essential content and school skills.

4. Opportunity to Learn and Student Time on Task

Teachers allocate a significant amount of classroom time to instruction in the essential content and skills. For a high percentage of this time students are engaged in whole class or large group, teacher-directed, planned learning activities.

5. Safe and Orderly Learning Environment

There is an orderly, purposeful, businesslike atmosphere which is free from the threat of physical harm. The school climate is not oppressive and is conducive to teaching and learning.

6. Student Rights and Responsibilities/ Positive Reinforcement

Granting students with positions of responsibility uplifts their self-esteem, knowing that they are trusted, and molds them to be mature.  Teachers also give praises and appreciate the students' effort.

7. Home - School Relations

Parents understand and support the school's basic mission and are given the opportunity to play an important role in helping the school to achieve that mission.



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