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As the Bay Area Schools for Excellence in Education (BASEE)...

Issue Addressed:

As the Bay Area Schools for Excellence in Education (BASEE) team transitioned from a small design and planning group to a larger implementation group, issues of inclusion, role clarification and communication were becoming apparent. The team was clear that they needed to address various external challenges as well (examples: unions, pay variances among districts, availability of substitues, other state wide initiatives, logistics - time, meeting places.) There were lots of questions about the plan itself (how to address local needs, links to literacy, technology, math; how much documentation.) And there was concern about possible threats (district scale back, NSF stops funding, state-driven programs take precedence, people burn out, we aren't getting "there" fast enough.)


We enlisted the help of our partners from Hewlett-Packard. Following their initial analysis of the situation, they designed and facilitated a two day retreat for our team. They graphically facilitated the "Strategic Visioning Process" (Grove Consultants International.) The objectives of the retreat were: To get to know each other; build team trust; explore the past -- how we got to where we are; examine the current environment -- challenges, strengths, opportunites; clarify our mission and values; and identify strategies and specific action steps to help us move forward. The graphic facilitation process allowed each individual the opportunity to be heard and for multiple perspectives to be valued. We were able to examine our past, present and future from many aspects and to build lasting relationships in a short period of time. The team worked hard, struggled through some difficult issues and celebrated success at the conclusion of the retreat by sharing our work with administrators, our advisors and other interested parties. The graphic format continues to work for us as we whare our insights and work to increase awareness throughout the eight districts. We've learned that commitment comes through involvement, and that organizations move through the change process one person and one step at a time.

Unresolved Issues:

Many issues were resolved during and since the retreat. However, discussions continue around compensation, roles and responsibilites of our science resource teachers, districts' commitement of staff development days, etc. We have scheduled more meetings with administrators and are planning a second retreat for the leadership team in the spring. The retreat helped us to begin conversations about pressing issues and gave us the confidence to continue discussions.


anonymous, 12/31/1997


Program Management



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