School Transformation Resources

MCIE’s systems change for school transformation work has been developed over 25 years. In 1990, we piloted our building-based change process to include students with significant cognitive disabilities in 9 schools in Maryland. In 1992 we were awarded federal funds for systems change work in our Neighborhood Inclusion Project, taking our pilot to scale in 30 elementary, middle, and high schools over 6 years. Based on this we went back to the drawing board to fine tune inclusive practices in preschool and secondary schools. What we learned:

  • The school district is the point of intervention and critical to support and sustain any change occurring at the school house level.
  • The principal is key to implementing any new practice; the school administrator’s full participation will enable school staff to successfully include students who typically had been removed from the general education setting and school. The principal is key to amazing change!
  • Collaboration doesn’t naturally happen unless it is systematically defined, and effective collaborative planning and meeting structures are consistently used. Adding data to the collaboration process ensures great planning and continuous improvement.


If you are one of our partners in systems change: all of your materials can be found here. If you are interested in developing a multi-year partnership for including ALL learners, contact Carol Quirk at cquirk@mcie.org.