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Root Cause Analysis

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by

Blake Ward

on 30 July 2014

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Transcript of Root Cause Analysis

Symptoms
Causes
To deepen school and district leaders’
understanding of the
root cause analysis problem-solving process
called
“The Five Whys”
for use with school/district leaders, learning teams, and school/district committees

Learning Intention
“The deepest underlying cause, or causes, of positive or negative symptoms within any process that, if dissolved, would result in elimination, or substantial reduction, of the symptom”
WHAT IS a ROOT CAUSE?
ROOT CAUSE Analysis
root cause example
Problem: You are on your way home from work and your car stops in the middle of the road
-
School Leader’s Guide to Root Cause Analysis: Using Data to Dissolve Problems
, Paul Preuss
(1)
Why
did your car stop?

Because
it ran out of gas
(2)
Why
did it run out of gas?

Because

I didn’t buy any gas on my way to work
(3)
Why
didn’t you buy any gas this morning
?

Because

I didn’t have any money
(4)

Why
didn’t you have any money?

Because
I spent my last $30 on dinner yesterday
(5)
Why
did you spend your last $30 on dinner?
Because
I don't have a monthly budget
Potential root cause:
Lack of a monthly budget to track spending
monthly budget
=
car less likely to stop working
ASK THE "5 WHYS"
STEPS:
1. Identify Problem Area
MAKE and record OBSERVATIONS
Average attendance rates at X School are below 90%.
Why do root causes analysis?
“Frequently, people in organizations
persist in attacking symptoms
rather than problem sources. Unfortunately, far too often, existing problem-solving methodologies
barely probe below the surface
....Thus, the
root causes
of the problems
persist, undisturbed, to feed the symptoms and grow
.”
YTD Att. 86% vs. 87% LYTD for 6-8 grades
Pre-K-K has lowest attendance
All attendance rates are below 90%
1. Brainstorm potential reasons for your focus problem
Transportation
Laziness
Bullying
Weather
Family issues,
bereavement,
family trips
Walkers don’t walk to school and go to friend/family house, stores, etc.
Suspensions
No windows, no air, basement (classroom environment)
Parents don't
value
education
Parents keep
them home
attendance is below 90% - Why?
Parents have older siblings babysitting for younger siblings
Behavior sometimes lead to students not attending the "special"
Self-contained classes; no movement
between classes
Not a lot of extra-curricular activities
Students
are
bored
Lacking a consistent
structure
at school
Mobility
Students feel they are not learning and school is a waste of time
Teachers not planning differentiated lessons to meet students' needs
In 1st-5th and 6th-8th attd. has decreased 1%
All of our grade bands are in the "red"
By Jessica Quindel, Student Information Services
and Blake Ward, Research and Development
root cause process
SYMPTOMS
SYMPTOMS
SYMPTOMS
SYMPTOMS
SYMPTOMS
CAUSE
ASSESS THE CURRENT REALITY
FOCUS PROBLEM
ROOT CAUSE ANALYSIS
THEORY OF
ACTION

GOALS
ACTION PLAN
VISION
© 2003, BayCES
Modified 2011, Jessica Quindel, MPS

Cycle of Inquiry

Creative Root Cause Analysis: Team Problem Solving
,
Dr. Jack L. Oxenrider
Helps identify
potential
root causes that require action
=
5 Whys

The vision of our school is to provide an arts-based learning environment with high expectations for student achievement.

Student or staff attendance
Student Achievement (e.g., reading)
Declining enrollment
2. Make Observations
Get into small groups
Makes as many objective observations as possible
Gather all observations in a shared/visible space
Choose a focus problem
Review all observations
Utilize a group decision-making process (voting, thumbs up/down, forced rank) to pick one observation as the focus
3. Use the selected reason as your new "problem" and repeat
steps 1 and 2 four more times
Gather reasons using a Think-Pair-Share or large group brainstorm
All reasons should be heard without judgment
All reasons should be posted in a visible space
2. Identify a reason for your next "Why"
Use a group decision-making process to select one of the reasons that meets these criteria:
A reason that you have control over
A fundamental reason that could shift the data in deep, meaningful way
Problem: Average attendance is below 90% for all grade bands
Proposed Solution
= Introduce incentives for low attenders
(1)
Why
is attendance below 90%

Because
students feel they are not learning and school is a waste of time
(2)
Why
don't students
feel they are learning and think school is a waste of time
?

Because

teachers aren't planning differentiated lessons
(3)
Why
aren't teachers planning differentiated lessons?

Because

they don't know how.
(4)

Why
don't teachers know how to differentiate?

Because
previous Professional Development (PD) has not included
peer support.
(5)
Why
doesn't PD include peer support?
Because
there isn't a collaborative culture or structures to ensure
collaboration around implementing differentiated practices
Potential root cause:
Attendance is low because teachers aren't working collaboratively to improve differentiated instruction.
coLLABORATIVE CULTURE
=
STUDENT ATTENDANCE WILL IMPROVE
root cause example
If
we use structured peer observations and planned reflective conversations around differentiation to build a collaborative culture...
Use final reason to create a theory of action
Theory of action should be the first part of an
"If...Then"
statement
Action should directly address the final reason selected
Example:
example:
...Then
student attendance rates for April, May and June will increase to at least 92% for all grade bands.
Based on reason and theory of action, create a
SMART goal
Goal should be the second part of an
"If...Then"
statement
Goal should be "SMART" - Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound
Example:
Use your theory of action and goal to create
an executable plan with built in monitoring
Action plan should have clear assignments and tasks
Actions should have timelines associated and clear monitoring procedures
The Learning Team will re-design the after-school PD by the end of the month (Principal to lead).

In April and May, all teachers will observe at least one other teacher (School Support Teacher (SST) to coordinate).

During May PD time, the SST will facilitate a series of planned reflective conversations.

By the end of the year, each teacher will try a new strategy based on their reflective conversation (Principal to monitor).
Example:
Proposed Solution = Take the car to the mechanic
Full transcript