•What kind of curriculum grows these “look-for’s/attributes/competencies in potential school leaders?
•How does one structure internships that enhance these “look-for’s”/attributes/competencies in potential
•How does one assess at the time of program completion for evidence of proficiency in the desired
At its very essence, this system would be focused on creating learning-centered leaders, and the attainment of
high student performance for ALL Illinois students would be the ultimate test of the system’s efficacy.
University and School District Partnerships
In the position papers and in task force discussions, members generally agree that university and school district
partnerships are integral to the effectiveness of the preparation principals receive. The quality and work of these
partnerships should focus on each of the strategies listed above (e.g., admission policies, curriculum develop-ment
and implementation, field-based experiences and internships, and assessing candidate performance). Uni-versities
and districts may work together in a variety of functions to form advisory groups and “grow-your-own”
programs. These partnerships should be a win-win opportunity for both the preparation program and the school
district. Diane Rutledge said that the ISU-Springfield program was invaluable to producing school leaders who
“hit the ground” running. The district profits by helping develop a program that meets the districts’ needs for
highly effective school leaders; and the program benefits by having access to district resources (e.g., clinical
sites, school staff serving as adjunct faculty).
Many members, particularly deans and program faculty, have raised the point that creating university-school
partnerships may be difficult in some areas due to the size and scope of the preparation program’s service,
particularly for some programs that serve very small, rural districts. However, it may be possible through
creative collaborations to form partnerships with these schools on a regional basis by recruiting the help of
certain agencies to facilitate these partnerships (e.g., regional offices of education). There should also be guide-lines
and criteria for selecting school sites and for outlining the partner responsibilities and commitments.
A Selective Admissions Process
Five members’ position paper explicitly stated that preparation programs should develop a more rigorous
admissions process that screens applicants for their potential to be highly effective school leaders. April Ervin
described the New Leaders for New Schools process which uses a multi-phase approach in which applicants
must provide evidence of demonstrated leadership performance.
Linda Shay emphasized screening for those applicants that show a willingness and capacity for adaptive leader-ship
(vs. technical leadership) who recognize a broader purpose for schooling to engage all stakeholders and to
be able to adapt to the conditions of the school and community. Several members stated that applicants should
possess and demonstrate that they can identify what good instruction is.
A Relevant and Research-Based Curriculum
The Alliance stated that the curriculum in preparation programs should reflect the real work of principals. Judith
Hackett from IAASE stated that this curriculum should include instruction on student data analysis, interpreta-tion
and use as well as emphasizing a shared responsibility for all students including recognizing and meeting
the diverse needs of students (e.g., special education, ELL/bi-lingual, and at-risk). Ed Geppert and Carlene Lutz
(IFT) emphasized the importance of helping principals learn how to foster a shared school culture. They said “A
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