The potential for school-to-school networks to foster school improvement efforts

Jamiylah Jones, Fordham University


School districts across the country have been grappling with varied education reform efforts to enhance students’ socio-emotional and academic outcomes via improved educational programs. One such initiative has been developing school-to-school collaborations and networks for improvements in school systems. It involves providing schools with such supports as coaching, professional development, action research, and instructional and budgetary alignment deemed necessary to advance student success. This qualitative case study explored one school reform effort involving the redistribution of leadership and management by coalescing numerous individual schools into a single network of schools. The structures and processes utilized by a network of schools were examined to determine if they assisted in school improvement. The actor-network (ANT) theoretical framework undergirded the study. The methods used included semi-structured interviews of the network leadership, observations of network and principals’ meetings as well as coaching sessions, and document analysis. A quantitative review of student performance outcomes and quantitative school evaluative data was also undertaken. The participants included the network’s leader as well as instructional and operational deputies. Their field notes were analyzed along with the schools’ evaluative metrics to triangulate the qualitative and quantitative data. The resulting data indicated that the network contained promising practices and instructional and operational structures that facilitated school improvement. They also illustrated that throughout the network, knowledge was encouraged, created, deepened, and shared through capacity building, indicating that school-to-school networks have the potential to promote school effectiveness, professional growth, and overall performance.

Subject Area

Educational evaluation|Educational leadership

Recommended Citation

Jones, Jamiylah, "The potential for school-to-school networks to foster school improvement efforts" (2016). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI10254176.