Nationally Recognized Leadership Development Program: Striving for Excellence Becomes Real

The challenge was ambitious and required dedicated research and applied analysis to come up with a reliable solution. The goal might have been simply stated as such: we need to quantifiably raise our professionalism throughout the school district, by both working on improved intra-office communications, and standardizing a culture of best practice throughout the MUSD workforce. This staff writer met with Chief Academic Officers Linda Monreal and Jesse Carrasco to discuss the overhaul project and to monitor its progress. The National Institute for School Leadership (NISL), is an organization that provides professional development, whose executive development program will train 50 of the district’s administrators, starting this month, for a year until May 2019. Once a month, the staff will take two days of training, taking a set of 12 courses. The certification in executive development will also result in identifying trainers, within the graduation class, to then pass that knowledge on and train inhouse, providing leadership training throughout the district. Teachers have benefited from professional development throughout the history of the school district, but administration has been a “hit and miss” process, which the current size of our school district can no longer afford and clearly required to improve. To that end, proven professional development will close the loop on implementing best practice throughout the school district: in education, teaching, facilities, learning and teaching technologies and innovations, and, with the help of NISL, the MUSD administration is now also getting standardized training.

Leaders are invited to apply for the program. Eventually, we want the entire school district leaders to go through the program. The Bakersfield school district has gone through that process and MUSD recently participated in some of the programs, as guests, and got a real taste of the obvious benefits from the program.

Madera Unified School District is investing in its leaders and provides them the opportunity to be on the cutting edge of their learning, establish best practices, create a common reference point that all administrators can recognize as they rely on a shared foundation for proven processes and practices.


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