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School Business Affairs


Federal and state education mandates have prompted more changes in PreK–12 education in the past several years than during any other time in American education history. The sheer volume of changes and their complexity have put school business officials to the test as never before.

Among the more challenging issues for school business officials are the budgetary implications of the Affordable Care Act, special-education regulations, new food-service mandates, and safety and environmental regulations.

School business officials and other education leaders must lead the district and the community through the changes brought on by those mandates. How do they do that effectively? Many models for leading change are available, such as Kotter’s Eight-Step Change Model (Kotter 2007), which breaks change leadership into eight steps:

  • Create a sense of urgency.
  • Form a powerful coalition.
  • Create a vision for change.
  • Communicate the vision.
  • Remove obstacles.
  • Create short-term wins.
  • Build on the change.
  • Anchor the changes in the organizational culture.

Other models are less specific, and some are more complex. District leaders should use a model for leading change that is consistent with their district’s organizational norms and behaviors.

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This article originally appeared in the October 2015 School Business Affairs magazine and is reprinted with permission of the Association of School Business Officials International (ASBO). The text herein does not necessarily represent the views or policies of ASBO International, and use of this imprint does not imply any endorsement or recognition by ASBO International and its officers or affiliates.

Permission documentation on file.


Association of School Business Officials International





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Reston, VA