Smarter School Spending

Smarter School Spending - 5A - Put Strategies into Practice

Monitor Strategy Implementation

A well-developed budget outlines the dollars and resources for implementing a plan of action to align student outcomes with resources for the upcoming fiscal year. However, there are numerous examples where excellent plans are improperly or incompletely put into practice. In some cases, the plan may never even get off the ground.

Evaluate Interim Results throughout the Year

  • When available, data from interim assessments, not just standardized test scores, should be collected and used to measure learning improvement to determine if progress is being made. Monitoring interim results makes it possible to identify potential problem areas early on and to determine whether any adjustments to the original strategy are needed.
  • The experiences of implementing the budget and plan of action as well as the actual results achieved should be “fed back” into the budget process for the following year in order to help the district make decisions on whether to continue, expand, or cut spending on a given program.


  • Level 1: A person has been assigned to monitor progress on implementing the Plan of Action and accountabilities assigned for key activities. At the end of the year, the district takes a structured approach to reviewing the progress made against the plan and then adjusts its approach for the next year, as may be required.
  • Level 2: Official progress "milestones" have been identified that help the district make sure it is on track with its plans. In addition to a year-end review, the district has shorter-cycle reviews (e.g., quarterly) and has systems in place to make immediate tactical adjustments its Plan of Action in response to new information.
  • Level 3: Additional major milestones, potential "small wins" are identified and tracked.

Quick Wins

  • Quick Wins: Identify the basis for evaluation
  • Why important? Linkage back to goal achievement
  • How does this help district control/own process? Sets out underlying expectations for responsible parties within the organization.


Best Practice 5A - Put Strategies into Practice and Evaluate Results

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Tool - Program Success Tracker

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Case Studies - Lake County, FL

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