Lone Star Governance (LSG) Talking Points for Board Members
“Student Outcomes do not change until adult behaviors change”
Why do schools exist? To educate students and prepare them to be successful adults, ready to succeed at the next stage of life!
Why do school boards exist? To put it simply- School Boards exist to assure student outcomes are met. School boards are elected to oversee the management of the district. They establish a clear vision and mission for the school. They communicate the community values and expectations for the students. School Boards adopt policy and also set and monitor the accomplishment of student outcome goals. The school board advocates for the district and its students. All of their work is focused on improving student outcomes.
What is Lone Star Governance (LSG)? Founded on research, LSG is a continuous-improvement model, a framework for governing teams—boards in collaboration with their superintendents—who choose to focus intensely on only one primary objective: Improving student outcomes.
What is the purpose of Lone Star Governance? The purpose of Lone Star Governance is to provide coaching and support, through a continuous-improvement framework, for school governing teams that choose and commit to intensively focus on the objective to improve student outcomes.
How does LSG accomplish this purpose? Lone Star Governance accomplishes this intense focus through tailored coaching aligned to the five pillars of the Texas Framework for School Board Development: Vision, Accountability, Structure, Advocacy, and Unity. In addition to the primary focus on improving student outcomes, Lone Star Governance provides systems for governing legal and fiscal responsibilities.
Is LSG all about teaching to the STAAR test? Simply put- NO! LSG is a framework that keeps boards focused on continuous improvement of student outcomes. The STAAR test is the current method we use to evaluate whether students are mastering the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS). We focus on helping our students prepare for success in College, a Career, or the Military.
Why do you say “Student Outcomes do not change until adult behaviors change”? If we keep doing the same things we have always done we will keep getting the same results we have always gotten. For real improvement to happen school boards have to set a vision and goals that are attainable but challenging for the organization. For continuous improvement to happen we have to adapt a growth mindset.
What are the components of LSG?
1. The 2 day LSG Workshop: The intention of the Lone Star Governance two-day workshop is to create a supportive space in which governing teams can learn about and can prepare for the commitment to intensely focus on improving student outcomes as described by the Lone Star Governance Integrity Instrument. The workshop is a conversation about researched school board behaviors that improve student outcomes. The Workshop draws from the participants’ respective experiences and their school’s performance. The underlying belief is that leadership matters and that leaders’ choices have the power to be transformative in the lives of our students.
2. LSG Continual Coaching and Support: Lone Star Governance Coaches are committed to providing continual coaching and support to school boards as they work to implement the behaviors that have been shown to increase student outcomes. The continual engagement between a school board and coach has been shown to make the difference in successful implementation to improve student outcomes.
What is the school board’s role?:
1. Ensure creation of a shared vision that promotes improved student outcomes. The board shall accomplish this by incorporating the community’s vision and goals into student outcome goals, superintendent constraints, and board constraints.
2. Measure and communicate how well the vision is being accomplished. The board shall accomplish this by collectively ensuring progress and accountability through monthly monitoring of district performance to ensure progress toward the vision and values and regular communications to the community.
3. Provide guidance and direction for accomplishing the vision. The board shall accomplish this by creating systems and processes for the district through distinct board and superintendent roles and responsibilities, which includes selecting the superintendent, delegating to the superintendent the authority and responsibility to implement the board’s goals within law and the superintendent constraints, and considering and voting on the superintendent’s recommendations.
4. Works with the superintendent to lead the district toward the vision. The board shall accomplish this by behaving in a manner that demonstrates the synergy and teamwork of the board and the district.
5. Promote the vision. The board shall accomplish this by providing advocacy and engagement for students, families, staff, and stakeholders.
So- does the school board run the district? No- The Superintendent is the CEO of the district and is responsible for the day to day operations of a school district.
What is the Superintendent’s role? Assume administrative responsibility for the district, manage the day to day operations, prepare the budget, prepare recommendations for board consideration, implement adopted board policy, provide leadership for the attainment of student performance, recruiting, hiring, and managing personnel, organize the districts central office, enforce the student code of conduct, submit reports to the state and federal government, other duties as assigned.
What are some key terms we use in LSG?:
Inputs- The processes, materials, and resources used to improve student outcomes.
Outputs- A check point measure of how the school is progressing toward achieving student outcome goals.
Student Outcomes- What students know and are able to do.
Other Outcomes- Any outcome other than student outcomes; budget, employee retention, facilities, etc…
Student Outcome Goals- Measurable Goals with a population, baseline, target, and deadline.
Goal Progress Measure (GPM)- A predictive sub-goal that measures progress at intervals or check-points.
Board Constraints- Guard rails or thou shall nots for the board.
Superintendent Constraints- Guard rails or thou shall nots set by the board for the Superintendent.
LSG Integrity Instrument- A research based board evaluation tool used every three months by LSG boards.
Monitoring Calendar- A schedule used to plan monitoring activity for the school board.
Monitoring Report- A report that reflects how the district is doing at accomplishing Goals and GPMs.
Texas Essential Knowledge & Skills (TEKS): Topics every child in Texas should be able to know or do.
Theories of Action: A research-based high-level strategic constraint which drives overall strategic direction.