The Center for Reform School Systems (CRSS) was created in June 2001 by Don McAdams, who had been a 12-year veteran of the Houston Independent School District (HISD) board, a former professor, a college president, and a quality management consultant. McAdams’ primary focus was to train school boards, using Reform Governance®, the powerful model described in his book, What School Boards Can Do
In the early years, CRSS focused on training newly elected board members but later expanded to also work with entire board-superintendent leadership teams throughout the country. The goal has been to teach school boards how to govern effectively and become forceful agents for change.
In January 2011, McAdams was replaced as president and CEO by Cathy Mincberg, a longtime education reformer who has worked as a high-level administrator in two urban school districts and served alongside McAdams on the HISD board. McAdams remains as president of the CRSS Board of Directors. Today, CRSS offers a comprehensive set of programs
that all share the same objective: to transform American school districts for high performance.
The mission of the Center for Reform of School Systems is to teach school board members and superintendents how to transform their districts for high student achievement, because every community deserves a great school district.
CRSS practices what it preaches. We believe that every transformational organization must have core beliefs and make commitments to turn those beliefs into action. CRSS believes firmly that:
All children can and must learn at grade level or above.
All children should reach their learning potential.
The achievement gap can and must be eliminated.
Schools alone do not educate children, but the school effect is huge.
School districts can be high-performing organizations.
School boards are responsible for district performance and should commit themselves to achieving these goals.