New Superintendents Academy
The Missouri Academy
For New Superintendents
A twelve-month professional development experience
Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
Missouri Association of School Administrators
Department of Educational Leadership and Higher Education at Saint Louis University.
To develop educational leaders who:
- Clearly understand the role of an educational leader in a political and social democracy.
- Demonstrate a defined set of highly effective interpersonal skills.
- Understand and demonstrate effective communication techniques.
- Work with their elected boards and communities in consensus building.
- Are comfortable with a collaborative leadership style.
- Clearly understand the planning process.
- Understand that long-term change cannot occur with short-term leadership.
- Are skillful and insightful in change initiation and management.
- Understand the cultural context of their situation.
- Can lead in an instructional environment.
- Comprehend the importance of relationships, timing, reflection, team building and development, critical friends, and ethical leadership.
The Missouri Academy for New Superintendents is a one year program designed to assist new superintendents in establishing a network that will promote reflection, communication, the development of interpersonal skills, and a structured program of effective mentoring. The next class of the Academy will begin meeting in October.
Retreats - Three retreats will be held to focus on effective leadership. These 1 1/2 day retreats will be held in October, January, and June at locations which provide easy accessibility but are in environments that allow for reflection and collegiality. State and nationally recognized presenters will share their knowledge and expertise. At least one retreat will focus on instructional leadership and participants will be asked to include key instructional leaders from their district in this session.
Regional Roundtables - An opportunity for program participants to travel to a regional center for an informal roundtable discussion/presentation which will also include dinner. Locations will be dependent upon the geographic distribution of participants.
Mentors/Coaches - A mentor/coach will be assigned to each participant. The purpose of this component is to assist the academy member in focusing on the development and achievement of leadership goals during the course of the year. The mentor/coach will also be able to provide expertise on critical school district leadership topics such as finance, school law, etc. Mentors/coaches will be recruited and trained in cooperation with the Missouri Association of School Administrators. Face to face sessions with mentors/coaches will be held at least four times during the year while telephone or e-mail contact will be at least bi-weekly.
Electronic Network - Participants in the program will be organized into an electronic network which will enable group and individual interaction on a regular basis.
Participation in the academy is limited to superintendents with at least one year of experience as a superintendent and no more than four years of experience.
Each Academy class will be composed of 25 participants from throughout the state of Missouri.
The majority of the program costs will be underwritten by a grant from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. However, each participant’s school district will also be asked to share in the cost of the program. The school district will be asked to contribute $1500 to the cost of the training.
The Director of the New Superintendents’ Academy will be Dr. Gary K. Wright. Dr. Wright has extensive experience as a classroom teacher, principal, central office administrator, superintendent, foundation officer, adjunct college professor, and director of a regional educational service center. He also brings the perspective of having experience in working with boards of education in the selection of new superintendents for their school districts, and has provided leadership for planning and directing the Academy for New Superintendents. During this time, he has also done extensive research on identifying the needs of new superintendents as well as identifying how other states have organized programs to meet those needs.
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