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Continuous Improvement in Practice

By Heather Hough, Jason Willis, Alicia Grunow, Kelsey Krausen, Sylvia Kwon, Laura Steen Mulfinger, Sandra Park


Calls for “continuous improvement” commonly arise in discussions about school improvement in California’s K-12 education system. But educators have various definitions of continuous improvement, and few know what continuous improvement looks like in practice.

To advance this conversation, this brief helps to define continuous improvement both in theory and in practice, and explores:

  • To what degree California policymakers and practitioners are engaged in continuous improvement efforts
  • How policymakers and practitioners define continuous improvement
  • The barriers and gaps in support for continuous improvement work

In addition, the brief identifies several distinguishing characteristics of continuous improvement organizations based on a review of research; includes findings from interviews with education leaders; and concludes with a discussion of next steps.

Information presented in the brief was used as a launching point for conversations during the Continuous Improvement Stakeholder Convening, October 3-4, 2017, in Sacramento, California. Read the Convening Summary.

Resource Details

Product Information

Copyright: 2017
Format: PDF
Pages: 26
Publisher: Policy Analysis for California Education