Upcoming Scottish College for Educational Leadership (SCEL) Conference

Dr. Lyn Sharratt, Feb. 25, 2017

How does a district move from pockets of improvement in some schools to improvement in most schools and most classrooms, then importantly to improvement in every school, in every classroom? In other words, how does a system or district move to ALL students showing growth and achievement? There is much hard work involved as you build your learning culture and develop staff capacity over time. It must be our common goal to enhance learning outcomes for students wherever they happen to be learning. That is why we have taken our collaborative process to an international audience.

As I have worked “Putting Faces on the Data” in Australia, educators in many other locations have also become involved. It has been exciting to work with colleagues in Australia, Chile, Spain, the USA, and across Canada. We have learned many things together, such as: the importance of using Protocols when developing cultures of learning; the specificity needed in deconstructing Learning Intentions and co-constructing Success Criteria; creating Data Walls and collaboratively taking students’ FACES to Case Management Meetings to know every student; and how to use assessment data to inform instructional practices the very next minute.

I am now getting excited about our venture into Scotland. On May 3, 2017, I will be in Perth, Scotland along with my colleagues Beate Planche and Maggie Ogram to participate in the Scottish College for Educational Leadership (SCEL) conference where we will focus on Collaboration Networks for Learning. At our session, you will be able to learn about the practices that help schools move forward on their collaborative learning journey individually and as networks. The latest international work we have each undertaken continues to inform the work we are doing together to find the most successful collaborative approaches.

Registration is open www.cn4l.co.uk. Please pass this information on to any colleagues who might be interested. If you are not able to attend, please feel free to get in touch so we can determine how to get these effective practices into your school district.

Stay tuned to this blog for further updates on upcoming international sessions.

The CN4L Professional Learning Day will be offered in Perth, Scotland on May 3, 2017.

Register Here





Screen Shot 2017-02-23 at 4.15.45 PM


While gains in student achievement occur inside the classroom and are directly influenced by the effectiveness of the teacher, large system change, in owning every student, is only possible when everyone in the organization sees him- or herself as responsible for the success of each student. Each class contributes to the school targets, each school contributes to the system targets, and each system contributes to the state targets.

One way to assess how we are making a difference for each student is to check for deep use of assessment “for” and “as” learning by asking five critical questions that I first asked students and now ask teachers and leaders as well:

  1. What are you learning?
  2. How are you doing?
  3. How do you know?
  4. How can you improve?
  5. Where do you go for help? (Lyn Sharratt Learning Walks and Talks Training Materials, 2008-2015)


School leaders who do daily Learning Walks and Talks (Sharratt & Fullan, 2009, 2012; Sharratt & Harild, 2015, Sharratt & Planche, 2016 (In Press)) gather evidence of teachers’ intentional teaching and of students’ improvement when they ask students the five questions above. Students who can accurately describe their learning, and how to improve, close the achievement gap. After many walks, conversations with teachers ensue. Leaders ask authentic questions about why teachers make the decisions they make. Leaders also take action if teaching is not occurring at a competent or preferably high-impact level. Action must be taken if students are not progressing at an expected rate (Sharratt & Harild, 2015, Chapter 4).


The Power of Five Questions is in answer to the question “How Do You Know All Students’ are learning?” System and school leaders at every level who ask students the five questions get feedback on how explicit the instruction is and improvement is progressing. They use that feedback to become a large and focused part of every Professional Learning session, which is critical for all teachers and leaders to craft collaboratively. Taking daily Learning Walks and Talks to ask learners the five questions is essential. Similarly, ensuring that teachers have the time to reflect on the firm foundation necessary for all students’ mastery of reading, writing, oral language, and problem-solving skills to answer the five questions provides the springboard needed to incorporate the 21st-century learning skills into the curriculum content.


Sharratt, L. (2008-2015). Learning Walks and Talks [Training materials]. Australia, Canada, and Chile.

Sharratt, L., & Fullan, M. (2009). Realization: The change imperative for deepening district- wide reform. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin.

Sharratt, L., & Fullan, M. (2012). Putting FACES on the data: What great leaders do. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin.

Sharratt, L., & Harild, G. (2015). Good to great to innovate: Recalculating the route K–12+. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin.

Sharratt, L., & Planche, B. (2016, in press). Leading collaborative learning: Empowering excellence. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin.

FACES by Lyn Sharratt and Michael Fullan Named Top Corwin Book of 2012

FACES by Lyn Sharratt and Michael Fullan Named Top Corwin Book of 2012
Leave a reply
Los Angeles, CA (May 16, 2013) Educational publisher and professional development service provider Corwin has named Putting FACES on the Data: What Great Leaders Do! by Lyn Sharratt and Michael Fullan as its 2012 Book of the Year. The recognition is based on a combination of total first-year sales, impact on the field of K-12 education, and availability of related products and services to provide educators with a full solution.

Putting FACES on the Data is a joint publication with the Ontario Principals’ Council and Learning Forward. The book shows how to develop a common language for sharing all students’ progress with all teachers and leaders and how to use ongoing assessment to inform instruction. Based on worldwide research from more than 500 educators, the book presents solutions addressing assessment, instruction, leadership, and ownership.

Education Week blogger and school principal Peter DeWitt wrote, “The reality is that data is a part of our lives in education. The important issue is to find the correct data, help teachers and administrators learn from it, and use it to help students have a better school experience that will prepare them for their future. I encourage everyone to give Putting Faces on [the] Data a read. There are numerous case studies and models included in the book that can help school leaders negotiate the process.”

Sir Michael Barber, Chief Education Strategist at Pearson, said, “Too often the debate about education sets up a false dichotomy between rigorous use of data on the one hand and teachers’ professionalism on the other. This book demonstrates triumphantly that when the two go together, students benefit.”

Putting FACES on the Data is available as an online eCourse for professional development. The course contains a multitude of videos that support the best practices described in the book.

Educators who want to go deeper into the work can bring author Lyn Sharratt on site for keynotes, workshops, and consulting through Corwin’s author consulting service.


Corwin, a SAGE company, was established in 1990 to provide solutions for PreK–12 educators. Corwin offers books, online professional development products, institutes, and on-site consulting services for a diverse set of professionals — principals, administrators, specialists, teachers, counselors, consultants, teacher educators, and collegiate-level students. www.corwin.com

FACES is available

The new Corwin book I wrote with Michael Fullan is now available. We are very pleased with the positive reaction it has received from members of the education community – teachers and administrators and superintendents. We ask our readers to use data positively, to understand what achievement data can mean to teaching strategy change in a classroom, to development planning for teachers, and to re-thinking how interventions can offer exceptional return on value in terms of early success and long term success for students who may struggle in the very early years. Hope you like it – let me know what you think. Lyn Sharratt

Using data to inform instruction

We are intent on ensuring that all students in every class have an opportunity to learn. A key mechanism every teacher has available to assure that every child is learning is up to date data on each child’s performance. Whether standardized, large-scale or in-class generated, the data can provide critical insights to the teacher who is professionally sure how to use it and confident in proceeding. Can we any longer stand by as teachers, administrators or elected officials report that “only x%” of their students did not make standard? Can we standby and not find ways to encourage or persuade our districts and teachers to use the data to determine with precision how to help each child? Can we standby knowing that many teachers simply don’t know how to mine the data they have in their daily planners? Lyn Sharratt