School Autonomy

School Autonomy

In a portfolio district the most important figure in improving student achievement is the school leader. School leaders should be given as much authority as possible to make the right decisions for their school: choosing who is part of their teaching and administrative teams, and having control over their budget and freedom to buy the services their school needs. In exchange school leaders must work within their budget and be held accountable for results.

Metrics for Districts Implementing Portfolio Autonomy Strategy

Granting greater autonomy

  • Increasing % of principals identified as autonomous
  • Increasing % of school-level expenditures discretionary to school
  • Declining number of new staff placements made by direct placement

Principals’ use of autonomy

  • % of schools that choose own instructional support organization(s)
  • % of schools selecting a curriculum other than the district curriculum
  • % of schools with alternative pay structures
  • % of principals deviating from the contract day and/or number of students seen
Component Rubric: 
Ext Desc: 
CRPE has selected these external resources to help illustrate how granting autonomy shifts a principal’s role. The Empowerment School Performance Agreement is an example of the expectations for autonomous principals and highlights the level of accountability the principals will be held to with rewards and consequences clearly stated. The job description shows some of the particular characteristics and skills that a portfolio district may want to hire for and develop in their existing principals as they transition to autonomy.
comp ref: 
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