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Climate for Learning

School and community leaders are recognizing how a positive school climate can enhance student engagement, motivation and achievement. With their high visibility, school administrators are in a particularly good position to set a positive tone.


Leading Schools: Distinguishing the Essential from the Important (McREL, 2005)

“This issues brief draws upon [Balanced Leadership, below] to help leaders identify which responsibilities are essential for ensuring high levels of student achievement in their schools."

Creating Conditions for Leadership Effectiveness: The District's Role (McREL, 2004)

Research brief that shows how districts can support school principals to create the conditions for higher student achievement.

Balanced Leadership: What 30 Years of Research Tells Us about the Effect of Leadership on Student Achievement (McREL, 2003)

“Research report detailing the outcomes of a meta-analysis of research on the effects of principal leadership practices on student achievement.”

School Leadership and Student Motivation (ERIC, 1992)
Review of research on the role school leaders can play in setting a climate that encourages student achievement. Although dated, the findings are still relevant.


Creating a Climate for Learning (Center for Social and Emotional Education)
The non-profit center offers a two-day workshop to help school administrators improve school climate and culture.

Partners in Learning: Supporting Effective Change in High Schools (Educators for Social Responsibility)
The non-profit Educators for Social Responsibility "provides consulting, training and follow-up support, personal coaching, and technical assistance to help schools implement and sustain changes that foster:

  • a safer, more welcoming and respectful school climate;
  • a fair and seamless system of discipline and student support;
  • more positive and caring relationships among students and staff; and
  • a learning culture that expects and supports every student to be academically successful."