Education: Better Grades for School Boards
Through research and a biennial summit, TASB illuminates how good school board governance improves students’ academic performance.
Education • Texas Association of School Boards
Public schools face plenty of criticism, “some of it justified, much of it not,” says Karen Strong, associate executive director for communications and public relations at the Texas Association of School Boards. “It’s affected the funding for schools, it’s affected public support for schools, it’s affected political support for public schools.”
TASB represents the school board of every public school district in Texas, and it advocates for and supports public schools in several ways.
TASB’s mission is to promote academic excellence for schoolchildren in Texas public schools. One way it does so is by conducting research on how the governance of a local school board can improve students’ academic achievement—an area that has not been well studied. TASB hosts a summit every other year that brings together and shares this research on exceptional governance. The association also adapts the training it offers school boards based on the findings.
The governance research delves into what practices governing boards can use to directly affect academic outcomes. The research has found, for example, that steps as simple as setting goals for the school district and superintendent that are focused specifically on student achievement make a difference.
To put the research into practice, “our staff goes into the school district, works with the whole board and the superintendent, and applies the research findings to the specific district to improve outcomes for students,” Strong says.
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