Instructional Leadership in Action

What the Four Dimensions of School Leadership Looks Like in Action

by UWCEL Dec 17, 2020

 

4d interview part 2

 

Brandon White is the chief academic officer at South Bend Community Schools in Indiana. When working with school leaders, his approach is that "we as educators must be involved in learning ourselves."

Lisa Rooney, director of framework development and support, spoke to Brandon recently. He shared what his leadership vision is — and how the Four Dimensions of School LeadershipTM (4DTM) helps bring that vision to life in the students' learning experiences.

 

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How the Four Dimensions of School Leadership Creates Focus in a Pandemic

by UWCEL Dec 10, 2020

 

4D Final

 

Lindsey Samec is an elementary school principal at Mounds View Public Schools in Minnesota. Like so many other school leaders across the country, she's had a lot to think about and manage this past year for her students to be able to learn and grow.

 

Michele Mason, director of instructional leadership, spoke to Lindsey recently. We wanted to know how the Four Dimensions of School LeadershipTM (4DTM) was helping her lead.

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When students feel happy and proud — the Student Experience Story Guide

by UWCEL Dec 3, 2020

“My favorite day of school was when it was my birthday because everybody said hello to me, and I wish that happened every day.” 

— a Seattle-area student, when asked to reflect on their best school experiences

 

For years, CEL has had frameworks around practice, knowledge, leadership and mindsets for adults. But we’ve never had a student-facing framework. When we revamped the Four Dimensions of School LeadershipTM to center student experiences in school, we knew we needed to bring students more directly into our work.

Jenn McDermott, director of innovative initiatives at CEL, spearheaded the effort to do just that. Jenn and CEL colleagues invited K-12 students from three Seattle-area school districts — then later on, students from across the country — to collaborate.

And the team learned that the adults at school really need to listen hard — because what adults focus on to make a better school experience? It’s not the same as what students say they want and need.

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Watch now: How we lead for equity

by UWCEL Oct 22, 2020

"We don’t believe that equity lives in a dimension on its own. As an effective leader, you don’t just lead for equity when you craft a vision and mission — it affects everything you do."

- Michele Mason

 

You believe in equity-driven leadership.

But how do you turn equity work into a practice that's integrated with your instructional leadership? And what does this kind of leadership look like when its implemented across a school system?

Over 500 leaders dove into those questions when they attended Leading for Equity: Equity-Focused, Learning-Centered Leadership live on October 8. Good news: you can still find the answers by tuning into the webinar recording — and it's available free on EdWeb.

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The Pandemic Revealed Inequities — and New Ways to Address Them

by UWCEL Aug 18, 2020

In a “normal” school year on a “normal” school day, Stacy Thomas, the executive director of teaching and learning for Blaine School District, bounces between each of the district’s schools, which are housed on one campus. Blaine is a district in rural Washington near the Canadian border, and the close-knit campus empowers Stacy to support principals and improve instruction.

Of course, this year has been anything but normal.

We spoke with Stacy about her experiences this past spring: the shift to remote learning, how it’s exacerbated extant educational inequities and how teachers and families have both stepped up during a trying time.

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A Decade of Rigorous Teaching, Leading and Learning

by Max Silverman Jan 7, 2020

On behalf of our team at the University of Washington Center for Educational Leadership, I am writing to wish a happy and peaceful new year to all of CEL’s partners, peers and supporters. I write this year with hope and optimism for what the coming decade will hold for students, educators and school communities nationally. For our team, the past year was an exciting one in which we released a new vision and mission, deepened our partnership with school systems across the country and engaged in development work that will produce new and revised frameworks in the coming months.

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The Importance of Partnership

by Max Silverman Oct 22, 2019

In this latest installment of The Throughline, Max Silverman emphasizes the importance of collaboration for CEL and highlights a recent story about our shared work with a partner, Blaine School District.

Partnership is at the heart of how our team at The University of Washington Center for Educational Leadership (CEL) works with school and system leaders across the country. Over CEL’s 18 years, we have learned again and again that multi-year collaboration in schools and classrooms leads to the greatest change for students and adults in the school systems that we support. 

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Empowering all students takes courageous leaders: CEL’s new vision for student experiences and a mission to get there

by Max Silverman Jun 24, 2019

In this latest installment of The Throughline, Max Silverman uses his final blog post of the school year to share CEL's new vision and mission.

In their recent book, Leading for Professional Learning, my colleagues Anneke Markholt, Joanna Michelson and Stephen Fink begin by acknowledging that, “Our nation has work to do. Deep and historically entrenched economic, political, and social chasms continue to create systemic barriers to student learning that result in educational disparities, dividing our nation’s children along the lines of race, class, and language.”

As alluded to, these societal chasms have been a part of the education landscape for generations and continue to be persistent obstacles to achieving equitable outcomes for too many students. In fact, not too long ago — roughly half a generation — my friend and mentor Stephen Fink courageously launched the University of Washington Center for Educational Leadership with a dedication to eliminating the achievement gap.

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Leading for a new student experience in schools

by Max Silverman Jun 10, 2019

In this latest installment of The Throughline, Max Silverman reflects on a year of conversations with leaders who are pushing for a new school experience for students.

As a leader, you are continually pushing for a new set of outcomes for students, new experiences for leaders in classrooms and schools, and ultimately, new paradigms for schooling.

Over the past seven months of interviews in The Throughline, you have joined me in hearing the best ideas for improving the student experience put forward by education leaders from across the country. These are leaders whom I admire and who have influenced our work at the Center for Educational Leadership — people who illustrate what a new vision of schooling can be about. Each one of these leaders is transforming schools and school systems from a vision that is based on their deep beliefs in the intellect, curiosity and ability of each of their students.

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[Interview] Striving for deep and rich student learning experiences with superintendent Jennifer Cheatham

by Max Silverman Feb 25, 2019

 

In this latest installment of The Throughline, Max Silverman speaks with Superintendent Jennifer Cheatham about how to create deep and rich student-centered learning experiences, as well as meaningful professional development for teachers in a school system approach based on equity.

Jennifer Cheatham is the superintendent of the 27,000-student Madison Metropolitan School District in Wisconsin. Cheatham specializes in creating systemic improvements in urban districts through the development of instructional alignment and coherence at all levels of a school system. Previously, Cheatham was the chief of instruction for the Chicago Public Schools, leading the central office team to support schools in instructional improvement and was the executive director of curriculum and instruction for the San Diego City Schools.

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