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What Brain Research Can Teach About Cutting School Budgets
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What Brain Research Can Teach About Cutting School Budgets

Edited by:

Foreword by Susan Kovalik



February 2010 | 224 pages | Corwin

"Karen Olsen has put budget topics into perspective so that school administrators can make decisions based on what is best for children, not what is easiest and most efficient for adults. This book is a powerful guide in helping our principals see through the fog of mandates, policies, and red tape and get to the priority of students!"
—Terri Patterson, Director of Elementary Education
Waco Independent School District, TX

"This book boldly asserts that brain research should be applied wherever human brains are working. Not only can and should brain research inform how and what we teach in the classroom, it should be brought to bear in boardrooms and the school budgeting process as well."
—Linda Jordan, Associate Professor
Hope College

Make objective budget-cutting decisions that will truly impact student achievement!

In tough economic environments, budget cutting is a daunting but necessary task for many school administrators. Karen D. Olsen takes an exciting, unique approach by applying brain research to budgeting. Now educators can make the decision-making process more objective by using analytical thinking in school budgeting rather than responding to emotion, tradition, or outside influences. Providing a strategy-builder chart, this book

  • Offers action items for putting the strategies into practice
  • Helps leaders determine where money should be reinvested or reallocated
  • Provides specific tips for working within a group decision-making setting
  • Includes more than 30 analytical charts to aid in gathering needed information

What Brain Research Can Teach About Cutting School Budgets offers principals and district leaders a methodical process for taking subjectivity out of the budgeting process.

 
Foreword by Susan Kovalik
 
Preface
 
Acknowledgments
 
Introduction
 
1. Where to $tart
Attitude Is Important  
Action Items  
Resources  
Endnotes  
Action Summary Checklist  
 
2. Instruction: Tools
A Brief Summary  
Action Items  
Brain Research  
Resources  
Endnotes  
Action Summary Checklist  
 
3. Instruction: Organization and Use of Time
Optimizing Organization and Use of Time  
Action Items  
Brain Research  
Resources  
Endnotes  
Action Summary Checklist  
 
4. Staffing
Action Items  
Brain Research  
Resources  
Endnotes  
Action Summary Checklist  
 
5. Professional Development
Professional Development Is a Survival Imperative  
Action Items  
Brain Research  
Resources  
Endnotes  
Action Summary Checklist  
 
6. The Inseparable Bodybrain Learning Partnership: Movement and Aerobic Exercise
Movement to Enhance Learning  
Action Items  
Resources  
Myths Versus Brain Facts  
Endotes  
Action Summary Checklist  
 
7. The Inseparable Bodybrain Learning Partnership: Emotion
Impact of Emotion as Gatekeeper to Learning and Performance  
Action Items  
Resources  
Endnotes  
Action Summary Checklist  
 
8. Double-Link Curriculum for Two-Step Learning: Link One
A Context for Content  
Content for Link-One Curriculum  
Action Task 1: Analyze Your Curriculum for Age Appropriateness  
Action Task 2: Analyze How Well Your Standards Enhance Pattern Seeking  
Resources  
Endnotes  
Action Summary Checklist  
 
9. Double-Link Curriculum for Two-Step Learning: Link Two
Link-Two Content  
Action Items  
Resources  
Endnotes  
Action Summary Checklist  
 
10. Testing: Does the Emperor Wear Clothes?
What Do Tests Test?  
Standardized Tests Don't Test Learning  
Where and What to Cut  
Homegrown Isn't Necessarily Better  
Action Items  
Resources  
Endotes  
Action Summary Checklist  
 
Appendix A: Pattern Seeking
 
Appendix B: Developing Programs
 
Appendix C: Age Appropriateness
 
Glossary
 
List of Figures
 
About the Author
 
References
 
Index

"Karen Olsen has put budget topics into perspective so that school administrators can make decisions based on what is best for children, not what is easiest and most efficient for adults. We used this book in our district with all our principals and it was a powerful guide in helping them see through the fog of mandates, policies, and red tape and get to the priority of students!"

Terri Patterson, Director of Elementary Education
Waco Independent School District, TX

"I’m very pleased to see a book bold enough to assert that the realm of brain research should be applied to wherever human brains are working and whatever challenges we face. Not only can and should brain research inform how and what we teach in the classroom, but it should be brought to bear in boardrooms and the school budgeting process. This book is brilliant and groundbreaking. Every school in America should have a copy in its professional library."

Linda Jordan, Associate Professor
Hope College

"Olsen addresses a current national issue with a focus on budget deficits and identifying a process for making decisions about budget cuts. This is definitely a different and unusual approach to budget cutting—a compelling contribution to the field."

Laurie Emery, Principal
Old Vail Middle School, Vail, AZ

"The entire nation is struggling with budget cuts, and this book is a very practical guide, a guide that has longevity and can be used time and time again with the same profound results. I would recommend this text as a must-read for anyone affected by budget cuts in education."

Lyndon Oswald, Principal
Sandcreek Middle School, Idaho Falls, ID
Key features
  • A Strategy-Builder Chart helps leaders analyze where dollars might be cut and determine where money should be reinvested to increase student achievement in a cost-effective way
  • Action Items in each chapter guide leaders through the budget-cutting process and provide specific tips for working within a group decision-making setting
  • Brain-research summaries in each chapter highlight the essential findings that connect with decisions faced by school leaders
  • End-of-chapter Action Summary Checklists provide a quick reference allowing leaders to review their work
  • Sources for further research and detailed endnotes present opportunities for further reading on brain research and budgeting

Sample Materials & Chapters

Preface

Foreword by Susan Kovalik

Chapter 1: Where to $tart


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ISBN: 9781412980494
$37.95

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