He visits classrooms daily and provided immediate feedback to teachers to improve their instruction.That's Principal Dewey Hensley, explaining the three-year push to move Atkinson Elementary up to NCLB expectations to the Courier-Journal. You can practically tick off the McKinsey report advice on raising teaching quality:
“We focus on each and every child,” he said. “We believe we have to be flexible enough to meet the needs of our kids, not that they have to be flexible to meet the requirements of our programs.”
Hensley and his staff members have also emphasized raising expectations — inspiring all students to think of college not as something they might do, but something they will do.Ask any of Atkinson's 500 students which year they will be going to college, and they'll tell you instantly. It's as ingrained as learning to count or reciting their ABCs.
- Strengthen every teacher with classroom-focused professional development and support.
- Make teacher collaboration a constant.
- Intervene quickly with any child who is struggling academically.
- Provide leadership intense enough to change the school culture.