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Continuous Improvement and Organizational Development

Our Approach

Our continuous improvement/organizational development work is designed to help various kinds of educational organizations play key roles in disrupting the systemic inequality that affects the lives of and to improve the educational outcomes and life opportunities for PK-12 urban school students throughout the world. In this work we develop others to use/lead cycles of inquiry to find and solve root cause problems within organizations. This work begins with the development of an “impact logic” that helps organizations: a) clarify the proximal and distal impacts that they seek from their work, and b) design and utilize the kinds of data systems for tracking proximal and distal outcomes.

In our higher education work, we also focus attention on developing organizations to diagnose and strengthen their cultures and infrastructure (structures, tools, routines) in ways that support continuous improvement work. In our Pk-12 work, we further expand our attention to developing organizations to diagnose and strengthen a school’s distributed leadership capacity and teacher learning organization as two key resources that support continuous improvement.

Higher Education

We support the continuous improvement of educational leadership preparation programs within higher education institutions. One of our primary clients is UIC’s Ed.D program in Urban Education Leadership. Through ongoing collaboration with this program we have incubated more advanced continuous program improvement work that we have ported to other work through the US and world.

In addition to our work with UIC’s Ed.D. program, we work with networked learning communities of university-based leadership preparation programs and individual leadership preparation programs through (a) long-term mentoring, or (b) day or multi-day site visits by educational leadership preparation programs to CUEL. We will host the next 2-day site visit for program leaders from 10 institutions (US and international) on April 27 and 28, 2020.


We support continuous improvement of teacher education programs within higher education institutions.


We support continuous improvement of PK-12 educational organizations as well as organizations that support neighborhood communities/schools/students. This work has been done through professional development, networked learning communities, and leadership coaching with district-level senior leadership teams or district leaders and  school-level leadership teams or school leaders