Purpose of the resource book
The TAMAM Resource Book presents the TAMAM Capacity Building Program and makes it available as a resource for coaches who support schools that adopt the TAMAM vision and engage in building their leadership capacity for sustainable school-based improvement. It can also serve as a resource for practitioners, researchers and policy makers who want to be introduced to the TAMAM Capacity Building Program. The program aims at building leadership capacity for sustainable school-based improvement at all levels and comprises a job-embedded learning experience through which a team of practitioners acquire a set of leadership competencies to lead school-based improvement.
This resource book is not intended as a prescriptive training manual. Rather, it aims at providing coaches with the theoretical foundations of the program, its rationalized outcomes and a general framework of the job-embedded learning experiences. The resource book provides practical guidelines for potential coaches on how to engage school teams in the TAMAM Capacity Building Program central to build leadership capacity both at the individual and school levels. These guidelines reflect the lessons learned throughout the past thirteen years of experimentation and include templates that have been developed through an iterative process of continuous refinement based on experimental implementation in a number of schools in the Arab region. The provided content of the resource book allows coaches, themselves action researchers, to critically adapt their plan of job-embedded learning experiences to the level of readiness of the participating teams as well as to their unique organizational and sociocultural conditions and cultural context.
Audience of the resource book
The main intended audience of the resource book is university and school level coaches who plan to train educational practitioners to form leadership teams and build their capacity to lead sustainable school-based improvement. This resource book offers the needed guidelines, resources and materials for adopting and implementing the TAMAM Capacity Building Program.
Overview of the resource book
This resource book is organized into five parts and eleven chapters. The first part, Chapters 1 and 2, provides a general introduction to the resource book and to TAMAM as an educational reform movement in the Arab world, its theoretical foundations, framework, strategic goals and student profile. The second part, comprising Chapters 3 and 4, presents the theoretical foundations of TAMAM’s Capacity Building Program – mainly the effective approaches for building capacity for improvement as well as the organizational characteristics that promote self-renewal. The third part includes Chapter 5 and offers an overview about the coaches in TAMAM along with their roles and responsibilities. The fourth part includes chapters 6, 7 and 8 and details the steps needed for initiating TAMAM at schools and forming lead teams. This part also gives an overview of the targeted learning outcomes of the TAMAM Capacity Building Program that these teams are expected to acquire, the job-embedded learning experiences and the competencies required as part of the TAMAM School Improvement Journey as well as the evaluation procedures to assess the effectiveness of the program. The final part consists of Chapters 9, 10, and 11 and highlights the coaching process in TAMAM. It presents guidelines for setting the stage for initiating the TAMAM Capacity Building Program, planning for its implementation as well as an overview of the tools available for coaches to manage the knowledge generated through the on-going action research throughout the implementation of the program. Throughout the resource book, general tips for coaches are also incorporated within the chapters to guide their work of building capacity for school improvement.
In addition, the resource book contains an epilogue outlining the emerging expansions within TAMAM, namely, those related to adding new components to the existing Capacity Building Program that target students, parents and the community as a whole, establishing a professional network of educators, preparing the training of trainers’ modules and developing research partnerships.
The resource book also includes several appendices that include training modules. TAMAM training modules are independent units of instructional guides that can be used as resources for coaches to construct their job-embedded activities for capacity building. The resource book also offers tools and templates that can be used by coaches and school teams to document their experiences and to elaborate on the conceptual understanding adopted in TAMAM for each of the main competencies and skills targeted in the Capacity Building Program. This documentation is also a major continuation of the research in TAMAM, specifically evaluative research that examines the effectiveness of the TAMAM Capacity Building Program in reaching its targeted outcomes.
Guidelines for using the resource book
The resource book serves as a comprehensive resource to guide coaches engaged in providing support for schools to build their leadership capacity for school-based improvement. The resource book is designed to communicate to prospective TAMAM coaches the theoretical foundations of the TAMAM theory of change and Capacity Building Program. While the resource book presents in details the targeted learning outcomes of the TAMAM Capacity Building Program, and describes the key job-embedded learning experience, namely, the TAMAM School Improvement Journey, it leaves the coaches with a lot of discretion to customize the details of this journey to the learning needs and organizational and sociocultural context of the school teams they are working with. While it provides the coaches with ample guidance based on a foundation of actionable knowledge developed through an iterative process of refinement and repeated experimentations in various school contexts in the Arab region, it does not constitute a prescriptive manual but rather a source of support for coaches. As inquirers and action researchers, coaches are expected to collect extensive data to understand the learning needs of the school team members they are working with and to familiarize themselves with the internal and external conditions that affect their ability to engage in school-based improvement. Accordingly, coaches are expected to customize and develop their own coaching plans for working with their assigned schools and groups of practitioners. It is the coaches’ responsibility to seek additional resources, continuously monitor and follow up the team members’ progress, provide supporting conditions in response to the emerging needs of the team members, and assist those members as they problem-solve to overcome the barriers that they face as they learn how to lead school-based improvement at their institutions.
For seeking resources, coaches can visit the TAMAM website* that offers a multitude of TAMAM resources, including technical reports by the Steering Team as well as reports by participating school teams on their learning experiences while implementing the TAMAM Capacity Building Program at their schools. Coaches are also encouraged to refer to academic research articles whenever needed. They can also engage in the continuously growing TAMAM network of professionals to learn from similar experiences and share expertise. Thus, the process presented in this resource book is best used concurrently with external resources.