You Can Get There from Here: Using a Theory of Change Approach to Plan Urban Education Reform



Connell, J.P., & Klem, A.M. – Journal of Educational and Psychological Consulting

“You Can Get There from Here” presents a theory of change approach to planning educational reform initiatives with a focus on district level efforts.

Using examples from ongoing work with urban school districts, the authors begin from the idea that a theory of change approach “helps make plans for urban education more sensible—more grounded in current research, in demonstrated best practice, and in local experience.”  After exploring the roots of the theory of change approach, the authors provide a step by step example of how an initial change framework is transformed into a fully articulated theory of change.  The benefits of this planning approach for district level educational reform are then discussed and the authors conclude by outlining its implications for educational consultants and technical assistance providers working in diverse education settings.