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Turning Around Failing Schools Leadership Lessons From the Organizational Sciences by Joseph F. Murphy, Coby Meyers

Turning Around Failing Schools Leadership Lessons From the Organizational Sciences



Turning Around Failing Schools Leadership Lessons From the Organizational Sciences by Joseph F. Murphy, Coby Meyers

Most people are all familiar with the idea of turning around a failing business or nonprofit organization, and the literature on these topics is robust. But no such research base exists for turning around failing schools though state takeovers of failing schools has been a practice for at least a decade, and the number of failing schools needing to be turned around has skyrocketed. Murphy and Meyers have integrated the literature and research on the concept of turnarounds in businesses, non-profits, and schools for an insightful and detailed look at what schools can learn from other organizations in trouble of failing. By pulling out the leadership strategies and lessons learned, the authors illustrate how schools can use a new framework to craft successful reform initiatives.


Chapters cover the basics of educational reforms as they apply in real-world situations, making this an invaluable pick for any administrator or policy maker interested in reform processes. -- California Bookwatch, January 2008 Murphy and Meyers do a first-rate job of mapping the territory of school turnarounds and identifying the options for educators to consider and researchers to investigate. -- Daniel L. Duke, Professor of Educational Leadership and Research Written for educators but drawing on evidence from many sectors, this book provides critical understandings on the causes of organizational decline, a comprehensive conception of the turnaround process, and powerful insights for transforming failing schools into the kind we all want for our children. -- Kenneth Leithwood, Professor of Educational Leadership & Policy

About the Author

Joseph F. Murphy is the Frank W. Mayborn Chair and associate dean at Peabody College of Education at Vanderbilt University. He has also been a faculty member at the University of Illinois and The Ohio State University, where he was the William Ray Flesher Professor of Education. In the public schools, he has served as an administrator at the school, district, and state levels, including an appointment as the executive assistant to the chief deputy superintendent of public instruction in California. His most recent appointment was as the founding president of the Ohio Principals Leadership Academy. At the university level, he has served as department chair and associate dean. He is past vice president of the American Educational Research Association and was the founding chair of the Interstate School Leaders Licensure Consortium (ISLLC). He is co-editor of the AERA Handbook on Educational Administration (1999) and editor of the National Society for the Study of Education (NSSE) yearbook, The Educational Leadership Challenge (2002). His work is in the area of school improvement, with special emphasis on leadership and policy. He has authored or co-authored 18 books in this area and edited another 12. His most recent authored volumes include Understanding and Assessing the Charter School Movement (2002), Leadership for Literacy: Research-Based Practice, PreK-3 (2003), Connecting Teacher Leadership and School Improvement (2005), Preparing School Leaders: Defining a Research and Action Agenda (2006), and Turning Around Failing Schools: Lessons From the Organizational Sciences. Coby V. Meyers is a doctoral student in the Leadership, Policy, and Organizations program at Vanderbilt University. His current research interests include school improvement, sociology of education, and Islamic school education. Previously, he taught middle school and high school English at an Islamic school in the Chicago suburbs.

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Book Info

Publication date

29th August 2007


Joseph F. Murphy, Coby Meyers

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SAGE Publications Inc


368 pages


Organization & management of education



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