Change Management for K12 Districts Change Management for K12 Districts

Change Management for K12 Districts

by Leslie Strong
Leslie Strong Leslie Strong Edtech Thought Leader
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Change is inevitable! 

There are two paths to make it through change, and you get to choose.

Let it happen to you, or 

Embrace and guide change on your terms.

If you’re on the embracing change path, here are a few considerations to help you get started on a path to success.


Where are we now?

This looks like taking stock of what exists today, before change happens. Determine if you have the tools required for success. Do you need more staff? And finally, how are your workflows? Do you know what they are and why they are structured that way?

Ask a diverse group of stakeholders to determine your starting point. You’ll want to get the facts from different points of view. Remember, this step isn’t deciding anything. It’s a fact-finding mission.


Where do we want to be?

Now comes the moment to decide. What is the final destination? What does success look and feel like? 

It’s time to set some goals. You’ll want to set both long-term goals, along the lines of milestones, as well as short-term goals. 

From there, you can also determine if your existing workflows will help or hinder these goals. Perhaps there’s an opportunity to streamline.


What are our challenges?

Of course, you can’t plan for every challenge. Some pop up as a fun surprise along the way. In this planning step, you can take note of challenges that are easy to foresee. Scour those day-to-day workflows to identify challenges there. 

Quantify your staff and board's buy-in to this proposed change. You may choose to meet with staff and stakeholders. It might be easier to get unfiltered, honest commentary using surveys. Either way, it’s important to look for the actual sentiment of your stakeholders, not the rose-colored version you might prefer.

Establish an adequate timeline for decisions and implementation plans. It’s easy to set best-case-scenario timelines, so be sure to build in extra time for detours or delays. 

Once you’ve taken stock of these facts and as many challenges as you can foresee, you’re free to move on to the next step in meeting your goals for change. Kudos to your district change management team!

“Change is inevitable, but preparation is a choice.” – Engelina Jaspers, author.


Follow-up resource: Flex your brain

Learn new ways to think through your trickiest problems in Design Thinking for School Leaders.


Leslie Strong Leslie Strong Edtech Thought Leader
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