News & Events

New Podcast on Developing an Area of Focus

by UWCEL Aug 12, 2015

An area of focus is what a teacher chooses to work on in his or her instructional practice in relationship to the strengths and needs of students within the school year. In a new Principal Center Radio podcast, CEL Project Director Joanna Michelson and host Justin Baeder, director of The Principal Center, discuss some of the common problems in finding a good area of focus and how to solve them, including:

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New White Paper on Redesigning Principal Supervision to Support Instructional Leadership

by UWCEL Aug 10, 2015

Principal supervisors can be an important resource for school improvement when they emphasize principal growth and learning. But transforming the role of principal supervisors and building the tools and support structures to help them grow principals' instructional leadership skills is a challenging task.

In a new white paper from the University of Washington Center for Educational Leadership (CEL) and the District Leadership Design Lab (DL2), authors Drs. Lydia Rainey and Meredith Honig describe the initial efforts of 11 school systems that are redesigning principal supervisor positions, highlight common trends and share emerging best practices. The school systems all participate in the Leading for Effective Teaching (LET) project, a partnership between the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and CEL.

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Federally Funded Study Will Refine and Validate Tool to Measure Instructional Leadership Skills

by UWCEL Jul 21, 2015

Researchers from Vanderbilt University and the University of Washington have received a grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute of Education Sciences to refine and expand the use of the Center for Educational Leadership’s (CEL) 5D Assessment tool. When finished, the newly developed and validated online tool will measure school leaders' capacity to observe and analyze the quality of classroom instruction, provide feedback to teachers, and plan professional development for teaching staff.

Participants in CEL’s 5D Assessment currently watch a video of classroom teaching and then write a response to three questions about their observations and interpretations, and their thinking about professional development. This response is scored by CEL raters and reported to school districts.

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Learn How to Give Targeted Feedback in Two-day Institute

by UWCEL Jul 9, 2015

Giving targeted feedback is a powerful skill and an important support for helping teachers grow their practice throughout a school year. At this year's Targeted Feedback Institute (October 27-28 in Renton, Wash.), principals, instructional coaches, teacher leaders and central office leaders who supervise principals can learn and practice how to provide the kind of feedback teachers can implement immediately and independently.

The Center for Educational Leadership has been training teacher, school and district leaders in targeted feedback work for the past several years. In this updated version of the institute, participants will learn the characteristics of effective targeted feedback and how to engage in feedback cycles with their teachers that result in improved student outcomes.

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New Area of Focus Institute for Principals, Coaches, Teachers and Teacher Leaders

by UWCEL Jul 9, 2015

The University of Washington Center for Educational Leadership (CEL) will host the Area of Focus Institute, a new professional development event for teams of principals, coaches, teachers and teacher leaders, on September 23, 2015 in Renton, Washington.

New teacher evaluation systems are prompting teachers to formalize their goals for student learning and their own instructional practice – and to collect data to assess progress toward meeting them. This process of goal-setting requires developing an area of focus.

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Summer Institute Kicks Off Training for “Impact Evaluation of Support for Principals” Study

by UWCEL Jul 7, 2015

After several months of intense planning, the Center for Educational Leadership (CEL) this week and next is hosting 50 principals from around the country for a summer training institute in Denver, Colo.

The institute kicks off an intensive principal training effort that is part of a large-scale, randomized controlled trial evaluation of principal professional development. Conducted in partnership with other research and education institutions and funded by the U.S. Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences, the study will provide the most rigorous evaluation to date of principal professional development's impact on principals, teachers, students and schools.

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Now Available: 5D+™ Calibration Tune-up Tool

by UWCEL May 27, 2015

The University of Washington Center for Educational Leadership (CEL) has released the 5D+ Calibration Tune-up tool. This new tool allows districts to support their ongoing rater reliability and is designed to be easily facilitated by district staff. 

Developing and maintaining reliable evaluators is a key component to the success of any school district’s teacher evaluation system. Teachers and students benefit from principals and evaluators who are trained and certified to observe, analyze and rate instruction, before they ever step into a classroom to observe a teacher for the purpose of evaluation. Research has indicated that in-depth rater reliability training should happen annually and calibration tune-ups should happen monthly.

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New Website Resource for Implementing Higher Academic Standards

by UWCEL Apr 2, 2015

The University of Washington Center for Educational Leadership (CEL) in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has launched a new website resource to help school districts across the nation with their implementation of higher academic standards. Bringing together tools, case studies, webinars and videos, this site offers a wide variety resources to deal with common implementation challenges resulting from the recent shift toward Common Core State Standards.

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Webinar: Applying a Cycle of Inquiry - A Key Strategy for Continuous Improvement

by UWCEL Mar 25, 2015

All educators continue to learn and enhance their practice over time. We identify areas of focus, learn from our experiences and try out new ways to teach and lead. But to truly grow our practice and ensure academic success for all students, we need a routine process that helps us structure our continuous improvement efforts.

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ASCD Conference Presentation on Role of Principal Supervisors in Developing Leadership

by UWCEL Mar 24, 2015

Given the redefined roles and demands of principals, their supervisors must transform how they lead, coach, and supervise. At this year’s 70th ASCD Annual Conference in Houston, Texas, CEL Project Director Karen Cloninger joined by Renton Public Schools Assistant Superintendent Tammy Campbell, Ed.D., presented CEL’s partnership work around the role of principal supervisors in developing leadership actions that improve teaching and learning, engage principals in cycles of inquiry around instructional leadership goals, and focus on growing principal leadership in authentic contexts.

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