Presentation Details

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The Eleventh International Literacy and Education Research Network Conference on Learning

A Comprehensive Approach to School Restructuring to Improve Achievement for all Students: Results from the field.

Dr. Joe Kretovics, Dr William Armaline, Dr Kathy Farber, Dr Chris Fox, Dr Svetlana Betyukova, Heather Stevens-Kittner.

The smaller learning communities developed through the project support the development of culturally responsive teaching practices linked with a rigorous curriculum to accelerate student learning that focuses on the following interrelated goals:

· Improving the quality of education for students who have been placed at risk by educational institutions as a result of factors such as income, sex, race, and/or ethnicity.
· Increasing the academic achievement of children of poverty to a level that will enable them to attain equal access to educational outcomes and compete successfully in post secondary education.
· Developing in the learning centers a family atmosphere, a more intimate learning community, and broad-based community support to increase academic achievement and student satisfaction with schools.

The Project builds upon the strengths that students bring to the classroom, linking student background and abilities with rigorous academic content within a context of teacher empowerment and extensive parental and community involvement. It provides a unique and comprehensive program of school restructuring, teacher professional development, support for students and their families, and student performance benchmarks designed to transform the educational delivery system and increase student achievement for children of poverty and children of color. The project focuses on three primary objectives:

· Restructure schools to provide a systemic approach to school improvement and increasing academic achievement that includes developing smaller learning communities, establishing looping (teachers and students moving as a team from one grade level to the next), developing interdisciplinary teams, additional common planning time for teachers, and flexible scheduling.
· Provide high quality professional development for teachers through common planning time and redesigned university coursework in order to transform the educational delivery system, establish contextual problem-based learning, and improve student achievement.
· Improve student and family support by establishing direct linkages to community and social service agencies, colleges, and universities services in order to provide enhanced learning opportunities that enable students to become better prepared to be successful in post secondary education and employment opportunities


Dr. Joe Kretovics  (United States)
Professor and Senior Researcher
Merze Tate Center for Research on School Reform College of Education
Western Michigan University

Joseph Kretovics, Ph.D. is currently Professor of Educational Leadership, Senior Researcher for the Merze Tate Center for Research on School Reform, Executive Director of the Midwest Educational Reform Consortium, and Faculty Associate in the Lewis Walker Center for Race and Ethnic Relations at Western Michigan University. Dr. Kretovics has served as the Chairperson of the Department of Education and Professional Development, the Department of Educational Leadership, and the Department of Teaching, Learning, and Leadership at Western Michigan University. Previously, Dr Kretovics served as Associate Professor and Director of the North Carolina Model Clinical Teaching Network at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Associate Professor of Education at the University of Toledo. At the University of Toledo, Dr. Kretovics developed the Scott High Accelerated Program in Education (Project SHAPE). He directed SHAPE for five years during which the project received numerous national, state and local awards. His articles have appeared in Phi Delta Kappan, Journal of Education, and Journal of Curriculum and Supervision. He has also co-authored two books, Transforming Urban Education (1994) and All Children Can Learn: The Unmet Promise (199

Dr William Armaline  (United States)

Dr Kathy Farber  (United States)

Dr Chris Fox  (United States)

Dr Svetlana Betyukova  (United States)

Heather Stevens-Kittner

  • School Restructuring,
  • School-University-Community Partnerships,
  • Improving Academic Achievement

(30 min. Conference Paper, English)