From My Perspective:
What We Need to Achieve Strong Student Success in Schools
The educational spotlight is finally beginning to focus more clearly on the challenges of urban school leaders across the county. School districts, CMOs, university professors, and policy makers are beginning to develop a greater awareness of two variables needed to achieve strong student success in schools:
- A Closely Unified Team. Leaders of successful schools have created strong and unified teams of skilled professionals embodying a culture of urgency, a belief system that all students can learn, and a mantra that it is their united responsibility to help all students achieve academic success. The essence of a closely aligned team working together, not individual teachers alone, has been the key to increased student achievement.
- Sustained Support. Principals who lead highly challenging schools need sustained support, development, and acceleration of skills to be able to continue to lead effectively, to increase teacher capacity, to unify school culture, and to make the transformational changes needed in most urban, high poverty schools.
We can no longer believe that the teacher alone is the greatest variable for student success. It takes a good school leader AND a unified team of teachers to create success from year to year for all students. The sooner we realize how critical it is not just to prepare our school leaders, but to continue to support and develop them; the sooner educators will achieve increase success for all students. The recent development of the CALL (Comprehensive Assessment of Leadership for Learning) formative evaluation system, developed by Richard Halverson and his team of researchers from University of Wisconsin, will be a great tool to measure a whole school team's effect on student academic success. Click here to read more about CALL
Elizabeth Neale, Ed.D.
Founder and Chief Executive Officer
School Leaders Network
Wallace Foundation Releases New Leadership Report
In January, the Wallace Foundation released Principals as Leaders, a critical piece of work highlighting the six essential skills each school leader must have in order to assure increased student achievement. The School Leaders Network program model is constructed to purposefully address development of each of these skills. Please see the attached article from the Wallace Foundation.
MetLife Foundation's Survey of the American Teacher
On a related front, the new MetLife Survey of the American Teacher (2011) illustrates extremely critical points of concern:
One third of all teachers report they may abandon the profession. This, along with a majority of parents and teachers despairing about the reductions of services and staff of schools is an urgent call for our nation's leaders and policy makers to increase their attention and actions toward adequately funding and supporting our nations' schools, valued teachers and leaders, and today's and tomorrow's students. Our children cannot wait for this support. Click here for the full report.
SLN Schools in LAUSD and NYC are out-performing their non-SLN peers
SLN analysis of the NYC and LAUSD schools for SY 2010 - 2011, found that SLN Principals are leading their schools to greater improved testing and performance over their peer schools. The analysis compared student achievement data for SLN Schools verses non-SLN Schools.
Some of the key achievements for SLN Schools in LAUSD are:
- The average SLN School increased by over 10 points over the previous year for each California Standard exam (ELA/math).
- The rate of graduation among SNL Schools using available data shows an 85% rate of graduation, compared to the current average graduation rate in the Los Angeles Unified district of 77%.
- SLN Schools increased Academic Performance Index scores by an average of more than 10 points, a unique achievement that exceeds the California requirements for LAUSD schools of similar academic status which on average saw a drop in their scores for SY 2010 - 2011.
The analysis based on the 2011 New York City Progress Report, compared SLN Schools and their peer non-SLN Schools. Some of the key achievements for SLN Schools in NYC are:
- SLN Schools in each borough outperformed the city average for gains in ELA and math. For K-8th SLN Schools, these gains were 13% better than the NYC average.
- 72% of SLN K-8 Schools received an A or B on the 2011 New York City Progress Report, compared to 59% in NYC.
- 64% of SLN High Schools received an A or B on the 2011 New York City Progress Report - 10% better than the NYC average.
We are seeing similar results in San Antonio and DC metro and will be sharing our data on the SLN Schools in those areas soon. Having school leaders equipped with the tools SLN gives them helps SLN Schools see continued improvements in performance of critical areas like test scores, graduation rates, and engaged students.
Elizabeth Neale, CEO and Founder1100 East Washington Road
School Leaders Network
Hinsdale, Massachusetts 01235
About Our New Newsletter
Welcome to SLN's updated e-newsletter "News for School Leaders in the Know" which replaces our "Network Connect". We would love to hear from you what news you would like to see SLN discuss in the future.
We would like to recognize those who have and are supporting our mission of transforming school leaders into empowered, highly effective change agents who improve school climate and culture and drive increased student achievement.
$1,000,000 and Above
Rainwater Charitable Foundation
$250,000 to $499,999
$100,000 to $249,000
The Booth Ferris Foundation
The Meadows Foundation
$50,000 to $99,999
The Boeing Company
Council of School Supervisors and Administrators
Harold K.L. Castle Foundation
New Schools Venture Fund
$10,000 to $49,999
The Frances L. & Edwin L. Cummings Memorial Fund
W.L.S. Spencer Foundation
Cipione Family Foundation
East Bay Charter Connect
John W. Carson
$5,000 to $9,999
The Andrews Family Foundation
The Rhode Island Foundation
Up to $5,000
Raise Your Hand Texas
Berkshire Bank Foundation
For a complete list of SLN supporters, please click here.