Why is it important to have a systematic approach to instructional reform?

In her report to the U.S. Department of Education, Pamela Frome (2001) described essential elements of a successful instructional program. Within her description, Frome clearly defined a systematic approach where schools have organizational structures and processes in place that ensure continuous involvement by school administrators and teachers to plan and implement strategies to achieve effective practices.

There is ample research evidence to support that schools should systematically organize their instructional practices. Effective educational policy requires a systematic approach where the essential elements include, “analysis and action that contribute to the ability of the learner to fulfill their potential” (Unattributed, The National Literacy Trust, 2002). Peter Senge said, “Vision without systems thinking, ends up painting lovely pictures of the future with no deep understanding of the forces that must be mastered to move from here to there” (National Literacy Trust, 2002). Neil McClelland (2002) said educational policies that are not systematic tend to reduce issues to discrete parts without considering the sum of the parts.

Quantitative research proves that inconsistent educational systems cannot improve (Frase, English, & Poston, 2000). Research also proves that most schools do not control their regular classroom instruction or their curriculum content (Li, & Fuson, n.d; Marzano, 2003; Hirsch, 1969). Systematic models inject into schools effective approachs to instruction and curriculum management (Cotton, 1995) that spill over into other aspects of school management.  Standards Plus helps ensure the following:

  • Students systematically learn content skills, academic language, and behaviors that allow them to efficiently master their required curriculum.
  • Teachers learn to systematically instruct learning behaviors as well as content skills.
  • Teachers learn to analyze data and plan their instructional program to meet student needs.
  • Administrators learn to implement, lead, and monitor an efficient instructional model.

Standards Plus is a research-based, systematic instructional model that helps schools link the random activities that often serve as their instructional program.  Standards Plus helps schools blend their random activities into, as Senge said, “A deep understanding of the forces that must be mastered to move from here to there.”