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Districtwide Learning Framework To Create Coherence With Greater School Autonomy

Leveraging a learning framework to support school-based decision making


Hopkins Public Schools’ learning framework serves as district guidance for decision making. With the district’s shift towards school-based autonomy, the learning framework has helped to provide school leaders with a clearer path for decision-making that ensures coherence and continuity across the district.


With increased school-based decision-making, the district wanted to ensure that there was a way to provide school leaders with confidence in their decisions while also giving enough guidance to keep all schools on the same page. The learning framework itself has four key components found on the corners of the graphic:

  • Student success metrics

  • Curriculum design and development

  • Scholar pathways and educator competencies

  • Spaces and places

These components give school leaders a shared vision, definitions, and a set of values to work from when planning for things such as school staffing models, class sizes, and budget. The framework also includes various grounding questions to help drive conversations and decisions around additional pieces of the puzzle — to ensure various guiding principles are in place such as equity, innovation, and even love. By bringing instructional practices, family and community, district policies, and even student voice into one framework, leaders, educators, and students alike are able to see the connectedness of all of the pieces and how one can influence the others in impactful ways.

This strategy is a part of TLA's Hop, Skip, Leapfrog release, which explores the concrete ways in which schools and systems pursued student-centered innovation during COVID-19. Explore the full guide to find additional strategies, insights, and resources.