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Visioning Onward

A Guide for All Schools
By: Christine Mason, Paul Liabenow, Melissa Patschke

Foreword by Daniel A. Domenech, Executive Director of AASA

Envision and enact transformative change with an iterative visioning process, thought-provoking vignettes, case studies from exemplary schools, key strategies and tools, and practical implementation ideas.

Full description

Product Details
  • Grade Level: PreK-12
  • ISBN: 9781071800157
  • Published By: Corwin
  • Year: 2020
  • Page Count: 264
  • Publication date: February 07, 2020

Price: $39.95

Price: $39.95
Volume Discounts applied in Shopping Cart

For Instructors

This book is not available as a review copy.


The step-by-step guide to defining your vision—and making it reality

As a leader, it’s your job to look beyond the present and envision a brighter future for your school. Choosing the right path, however, can be a challenge.

This inspirational resource is your guide. By following its one-of-a-kind iterative visioning process, you’ll sharpen your vision into a road map for transformative change—tailored to the needs of your learning community. Features include:

  • Key strategies and tools for building a shared vision
  • Practical implementation ideas
  • Case studies from exemplary schools
  • Common trends at the heart of impactful, positive change
  • Thought-provoking vignettes

Turn vision into reality, possibilities into plans, and create an environment that strengthens engagement, provides safe and nurturing learning opportunities, and produces students with the skills, knowledge, and disposition to be successful in life.



Christine Mason photo

Christine Mason

Christine Mason, PhD, an educational psychologist, is a nationally recognized expert in the areas of educational reform, visioning, trauma and mindfulness, teacher and principal mentoring, and special education. She is also a yoga, mindfulness, meditation instructor who was trained in New Mexico and certified in 2001, with a Level II yoga certification in Conscious Communication in 2005. From 2005-2009, she was chair of the Education Committee for Miri Piri Academy, an international yoga boarding school in Amritsar, India. In 2009, she served for 5 months as the interim principal at Miri Piri. Since being certified to teach yoga, Christine has taught 2-5 yoga and meditation classes weekly in local community centers and for the Fairfax County Parks and Recreation program. She is a member of the International Kundalini Yoga Teachers Association and is also certified in Radiant Child Yoga.

Christine is the Founder and Executive Director of the Center for Educational Improvement, an intentional collaborative of educators and researchers actively engaging to create a transformational system of education focused on collective healing and holistic learning. We identify, curate, develop, and scale-up sustainable practices, such as Heart Centered Learning and Leadership and student-led reform, that nurture family and community connectedness, well-being, equity, and justice.

Christine is also the Chief Advisor to the Childhood-Trauma Learning Collaborative, with Yale University’s New England Mental Health Technology Transfer Center. Her time as chair of Miri Piri’s education committee and her multiple visits to India, as well as her experiences networking for transformative educational change and researching exemplary educational programs, serve as the foundation for her beliefs and efforts to bring compassionate practices to all aspects of education.

Early in her career, Christine also was a classroom teacher and a professor, teaching courses in curriculum, inclusion, social emotional learning, educational assessment, and educational research. She has also served as Associate Executive Director of Research and Professional Development at the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP); Director of Professional Development for the Student Support Center in Washington, D.C.; and the Senior Director for Research and Development with the Council for Exceptional Children. Christine is lead author of several books and articles, including Mindfulness Practices: Cultivating Heart Centered Communities Where Children Focus and Flourish, Mindful School Communities: The 5 Cs of Nurturing Heart Centered Learning, Visioning Onward: A Guide for ALL Schools, and Compassionate School Practices: Fostering Children’s Mental Health and Well-Being. She is also the primary author and developer of an innovative process for developing compassionate school cultures: The School Compassionate Culture Analytical Tool for Educators (S-CCATE).

Paul Liabenow photo

Paul Liabenow

Paul Liabenow, Executive Director

Principal Mentoring: MEMSPA and the NAESP

The Michigan Elementary Middle School Principals Association (MEMSPA) is currently offering members personal mentoring and professional learning programs as member benefits. Several years ago, MEMSPA realized that its services were being used primarily by white school principals in schools that were also largely white. As executive director, Paul worked with a team of leaders to come up with a vision for improving education in Michigan. To realize the vision, MEMSPA redesigned its programs and offerings to better meet the needs of African American and Latinx principal leaders in urban areas such as Detroit. Today, 20 percent of MEMSPA principals are early career principals who receive services such as coaching and monthly mentoring chats. Additionally, weekly Tweet chats via #memspachat have become one of the best education chat experiences in the country. This valuable professional development tool allows like-minded educators to grow their professional learning network far beyond the walls of their classrooms. Miles disappear as technology provides the path for teachers, and school leaders to find ideas, share experiences, and support each other. The motivation of the learning often travels beyond the Twitter format and transforms into e-mails, phone calls, and even classroom collaborations. With the power of video-based tools such as Skype and Zoom, educator teamwork is at an all-time high around our country and our world.

Regarding MEMSPA’s current status and where it is headed, Paul says, “We are always visioninglooking ahead and continuously improving.” To vision, not only for MEMSPA but for other endeavors focused on mindful practices SEL and early literacy requires the collaborative work of leaders who have a heart for improving education for all students. He surrounds himself with business leaders, education content experts, futurists, and trusted allies who share his passion for improving the quality of life for all. A thirty-two-year educator including nearly ten years as superintendent of schools, Paul also serves as president of Core Communications International, president of the Center for Education Improvement, and owner of Liabenow Tree Farms located in Northern Michigan. His experience running a school district as superintendent and several small businesses has helped him develop a network of trusted allies.

One of the best ways to understand the value that MEMSPA brings to schools is to talk with MEMSPA members. In the book, you will find five interviews featuring MEMSPA principals.

Melissa Patschke photo

Melissa Patschke

Dr. Melissa D. Patschke, Principal

Upper Providence Elementary School, Royersford, PA

Spring City Elementary, Spring City, PA

Melissa has served public education for more than thirty years. She has taught in a variety of special and regular education programs, worked at the middle and elementary levels, and served students from both urban and suburban areas. Melissa has hosted national webinars, trained national mentors, and published articles featuring best practices for schools. She has shared her messages on the international platform through exchanges and collaborative projects. She presently serves on the board of directors for the Pennsylvania Association of Elementary and Secondary School Principals and for the National Association of Elementary School Principals. Through these respected networks, Melissa partners with leaders across the nation to advocate on behalf of what’s right for children and schools. Melissa is passionate about shared visionary practices that elevate our impact for children through whole child philosophies, culturally responsive schools, service learning, global networks, mentoring, positive school cultures, and increasing leadership capacity.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

List of Online Resources

Foreword by Daniel A. Domenech



About the Authors


1. The Art of Seeing

How Leaders of Learning Transition From Believing It to Seeing It

Visioning Onward: Preparing for Challenges

What Is the Role of Schools Today?

The Opportunity That Is Opening for Schools

Why Visioning?

The Powerful Impact of Visioning

Visioning—Permission to Thrive and Change

Some Additional Considerations—In the Long Term

Conclusions—Visions and Our Day-to-Day Reality

2. Believe It to See It: Creating a Vision

Ancient Visions—Burning Cities and Prophecies

Visioning in Modern Times—Dewey to Today

Is Visioning Still Relevant in 2020?

Why Do We Encourage Schools to Embrace Visioning?

Visioning—One Secret of Uncommon Leadership

It Takes a Team

Community Building: How Much Involvement Do You Anticipate?

Factors to Consider for Visioning at Your School or District

How Do Visions Relate to a School’s Purpose?

Visioning and ESSA

Visioning in Schools—Opportunities Today to Recreate Education

Where Is Your School (Or District) Headed?

Conclusions—Visioning in a Time of Uncertainty and Implications for Schools

3. 21st Century Concerns—Food for Thought

Dreams, Visioning Onward, and Changes in Schools

Do Visions Make a Difference?

Five Great Companies

Comparing Visions

Visions as Disruptions

Visions, Missions, and Successful Ventures

How Innovations Have Disrupted Our Lives

Visioning—Various Lenses

Holistic Understanding

Group Effort

Knowledge and Values

Visions That Incorporate Many Perspectives

Visioning Is Not Missioning

Visioning Onward for School Improvement

Dreams, Visioning Onward, and Changes in Schools

Conclusions—Collectively Visioning Outside the Box


4. Visioning: Steps 1–4

Doing the Work

So How Will You Proceed With Visioning at Your School?

Some Prerequisites—Biding Time, Building Trust

An Example of Where Visions Might Take You—Green Schools

Visioning—Light-Years Beyond Ordinary (Path 1)

Another Need—Visioning to Handle a Crisis (Path 2)

Considerations for the Visioning Process

A Recommended Eight-Step Visioning Process

Step 1—Form a Vision Steering Team, and Develop a Visioning Process Blueprint

Before the Visioning Process Begins

Step 2—Identify Participants for the Visioning Process

Step 3—Develop the First Draft of Your Vision, and Imagine Your School the Way You Would Like It to Be

Step 4—Research Exemplars and Options

Conclusions—Borrowing From the Greats

Resources and Ideas to Support the How of Visioning

Iterative Visioning

5. Visioning Case Study

The Opening of a New School—Upper Providence Elementary School (UPES)

Visioning Questions for UPES

Key Questions for Parents

Thirteen Years Later—Refreshing Our Vision

Staf-faculty Focus Group Questions


Pro-Social Pledge

An Existing School With New Leadership at Spring City Elementary School

Spring City Staff Entry Plan Questions

Vision Questions for Spring City Staff

Conclusions—Collaboration Is Key

6. Visioning Steps 5–8

Steps 5–8

Step 5—Refine Your Vision Using an Iterative Visioning Process

Step 6—Develop Mission and Goal Statements, and Determine How to Measure Progress

Mission Statements and the Strategic Planning Process


Measuring Progress

Step 7—Secure Consensus. Ensure That You Are Communicating With Those Who Didn’t Participate or Who Have a Different Vision

Step 8—Develop an Action Plan to Implement Your Vision

How to Develop an Action Plan

Conclusions—Developing an Action Plan as a Team

7. Barriers and Sustainability

Vision, Mission, and Goals—Implementation

Lead the Visioning Journey

Obstacles on the Path

What Processes Will Be Affected?

Challenges in Implementing Heart Centered Learning

Promoting Heart Centered Learning

Implementing Visions Requires Change

You’re Not Operating in a Vacuum


Focus, Priorities, and Goal Setting

When Leadership Changes

Conclusions—Leveraging Communities Near and Far to Overcome Barriers to Sustainability


8. Future Visioning—Here and Across the Globe

Trends in Education Affecting How Schools Operate

Change and Its Drivers

Technology and Our Way of Being and Doing

Unwanted Side Effects of Too Much Technology

Change Driver 1—Automating Choices

Change Driver 2—Civic Superpowers

Change Driver 3—Accelerating Brains

Mindfulness and Executive Functioning

Change Driver 4—Toxic Narratives


The Future of Employment

Change Driver 5—Remaking Geographies

Change Driver 6—Social Emotional and Heart Centered Learning

Heart Centered Learning

Implementing Heart Centered Learning

International Concerns and Children’s Well-Being

An Entrepreneurial Vision for Education on a Global Scale

9. Conclusion

Leadership for Tomorrow





Price: $39.95
Volume Discounts applied in Shopping Cart

For Instructors

This book is not available as a review copy.

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