School District Process Management
By Naomi Dillon
Intentional. About the only thing he hadn’t planned for while at the
helm of Washoe County School District was leaving four years later. But, in
those four years, this Nevada district has put reforms in place that will
continue without him.
“That’s really the point of having processes and systems in place,”
says Morrison, the 2012 Superintendent of the Year. He hopes to bring the same
philosophy to his new job as superintendent of North Carolina’s
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools when he starts this summer. “You can’t continue
to improve without establishing processes and systems.”
Such statements are music to Jack Grayson’s ears. Founder and
chairman of the Houston-based American Productivity and Quality Center (APQC),
Grayson has been on a mission to translate his experience in the private sector
to improve efficiencies and performance to the K-12 sector. But it’s been a
tough sell, even if the numbers are on his side.
“I’ll get ‘well, I’ll think about it,’ or ‘we don’t have the money
right now,’ and I’ll tell them, ‘you’ll get the money, we guarantee it,’” says
Grayson, noting that each of the 50 some districts APQC has worked with have
achieved an average net savings of $1 million.
The results of using these processes and systems are clarity,
consistency, and alignment of resources. These can be hard to come by in school
systems that are frequently decentralized.
“It was such an easy answer, it was like someone could’ve walked up
and said, ‘Here’s an idea, why don’t you just have it all on one site,’” says
Washoe Chief Information Officer Ed Grassia of the district’s solution to
streamlining service requests.
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