Karen Olsen's What Brain Research Can Teach About Cutting School Budgets is a practical guide for school leaders who are charged with the painstaking task of making budget cuts-a task typically driven by emotion, tradition, and the power of social leaders, followed by disagreements and dissatisfaction. This book offers an alternative-a way to use brain research to create powerful but politically neutral decision-making criteria. The author offers clear action items, brain research summaries, and checklists to guide leaders through the budget cutting process, and to ensure that they reinvest money into the key programmes that will truly impact student achievement.
Karen D. Olsen is author, co-author, and contributing editor of two dozen books focusing on using brain research to create schoolwide change. Her most recent book, What Brain Research Can Teach Us About Cutting School Budgets, is also published by Corwin Press. Her experience includes serving as executive director of the Mid-California Science Improvement Program (MCSIP), a ten-year effort funded by the David and Lucile Packard Foundation to improve science education using the ITI/HET model. She also served as executive director of the Bay Area Middle School Program, a project to create model middle schools. Olsen was one of the original founders of the California Institute of School Improvement, a non-profit organization designed to support schools and districts in a wide range of school change issues. As program director, she conducted seminars on a range of topics including implications of recent legislation, schoolwide planning and program quality review processes, and the role of mentor teachers as change agents. Addtional experience includes planning and development for the California State Department of Education.