Veteran educator Alisa Simeral has guided school-based reform efforts as teacher, dean, instructional coach, professional developer, and mentor of coaches. Her focus is, and always has been, understanding what sets apart the excellent from the mediocre (spoiler: how one thinks) and weaving ‘reflection’ throughout the fabric of all professional growth. If how we think drives what we do, then developing and refining strong habits of thought is at the heart of all capacity-building work, and ultimately, both teacher and student success.
Alisa has turned her commitment to helping schools develop Systems of Reflective practice into a major focus of her research, writing, speaking, and teaching. She is co-author of several best-selling books: Building Teachers Capacity for Success; A collaborative approach for coaches and school leaders; Teach, Reflect, Learn; Building your capacity for success in the classroom; and The Principal Influence; A Framework for Developing Leadership Capacity in Principals.
She is now a consultant to schools- both nationally and internationally, focused on cultivating Reflective Practice with her colleague and co-author, Pete Hall and their ASCD Building Teacher Capacity Cadre. She supports teachers, coaches, principals, and district leaders in work to shift from cultures of compliance to cultures of commitment and is an invited speaker at state and national conferences.
“We must become adept at learning. We must become able not only to transform our institutions, in response to changing situations and requirements; we must invent and develop institutions which are ‘learning systems’, that is to say, systems capable of bringing about their own continuing transformation.” Donald Schon, The Reflective Practitioner (1973)