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Collaborative Problem Solving

Collaborative Problem Solving
A Step-by-Step Guide for School Leaders

May 2024 | 208 pages | Corwin

Engage your school communities in collaboratively solving your biggest problems

Schools are complex places where problems come in all shapes and sizes, and where decisions impact students’ lives. Leading groups in solving these problems sometimes can be a daunting task. Collaborative Problem Solving outlines a process to help veteran and new leaders alike to create thoughtful, organized, and collaborative solutions for the simple to the most difficult problems they face.

Rooted in theory, this comprehensive guide presents a seven-step process that addresses all types of problems. Each chapter outlines the tasks and procedures required to successfully navigate each step, while providing helpful analogies and illustrations, alongside common foibles and fumbles leaders should avoid. Additional features include:

  • An explanation of participatory problem-solving
  • Prerequisites for successful collaboration and rules for collaborative leaders
  • “Task Cue Cards” that offer facilitation lesson plans to approach each step in the process
  • A “Problem Solver’s Toolbox” that covers meeting designs, roles, communication strategies, and more
  • An annotated guide for further reading, providing a wealth of additional information and resources

Practical and relevant, this book is a user-friendly manual for school leaders seeking to employ a problem-solving process that works so that they and their teams can feel confident their efforts will result in a successful resolution.

Chapter 1: School Problem Solving in a Nutshell
Chapter 2: Identify and Define the Problem
Chapter 3: Develop a Common Understanding and Intent
Chapter 4: Image the Solution, and Determine Its Impact
Chapter 5: Develop the Solution Criteria and Select a Problem-Solving Procedure
Chapter 6: Define Search Strategies and Find Solution Alternatives
Chapter 7: Weigh the Alternatives and Decide on a Solution
Chapter 8: Solve the Problem
The Problem Solver’s Toolbox
For Further Reading and Bibliography

Lawrence (Larry) Anthony Machi

Lawrence A. Machi is a Professor Emeritus of Organizational Leadership at the University of La Verne, in La Verne, California. He holds an MA in curriculum development and an Ed.D. in organizational leadership. He has taught research methods and design and has chaired doctoral dissertation research in addition to teaching classes in organizational development. He has extensive experience in higher education, and prior to his tenure at La Verne, he taught in schools of education at the University of San Francisco, St. Mary’s College of California, and Sonoma State University. Dr. Machi has served as a Fulbright Specialist and recently... More About Author

Brenda Tyler McEvoy

Brenda T. McEvoy taught high school English, history, and science for 36 years. Research skills were always part of her curriculum. For eight years, she worked for the California State Department of Education, leading groups of educators in improving their ability to edit and assess student writing. She has also served as a mentor for beginning English and history teachers. Participation in the California Writing Project extended her knowledge of writing and the difficulties students face when producing a major assignment. She has worked as an editor for several books, focusing on helping writers create work that is clear and logical. More About Author

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ISBN: 9781071926055