Professional Learning for School System Leaders
- An internationally highly regarded system-level leadership certificate program for national school system leaders
- Strong evidence of a highly effective instructor who demonstrates a deep commitment to students, resulting in many life-long relationships
- Strong evidence of impact on system-level leadership practices
- Strong evidence of building a highly effective system-level team
- High yield instructional strategies, current research, student-centered curriculum that requires the application of new learning to practice
- Contextualization of the program to ensure alignment with system priorities and
- Positive testimonials, advocates and collaborators
60 Hours of Exemplary Learning for all Leaders of Educational Systems – Directors, Superintendents, Assistant Superintendents, Program Leaders, Elected Officials and Ministry Personnel
“Think ‘system’ and not ‘individual school’ if the goal is to fundamentally change the culture of schools.” Dr. Michael Fullan, O.C
Module 1: Leadership for System Improvement
- understand effective school-level leadership
- examine practices of an effective school leader in 21st century teaching and learning, using current international school leadership frameworks and research
- understand the system-level leadership required to support your schools
- explore the roles in terms of processes, providing and aligning resources, developing leadership capacity and ensuring productive relationships
- collectively apply new knowledge to develop a draft system-level leadership framework by reflecting on the discussed literature and shared frameworks
Module 2: Effective School Systems
- understand key characteristics of effective schools and the current supporting research
- review frameworks for the analysis and support of schools
- understand characteristics of effective systems and practices that support 21st century teaching and learning in schools
- consider the potential impact of PISA results and probe levers for change
- collectively apply new knowledge to develop a draft system effectiveness framework
Module 3: Capacity Building Practices
- understand effective practices at the school and system level
- explore in-depth the concepts of emotional and cultural intelligence
- understand the importance of building relational trust, a collaborative culture and collective efficacy
- probe how to improve challenging conversations
- explore collaborative inquiry, mentoring programs, system development plans, school and principal supervision, school visits and strategies to increase system-level collaboration
- collectively apply this new knowledge to an analysis of current system-level practices
Module 4: Data Use and Planning Practices
- understand what makes effective school-level practices
- discuss characteristics of collaborative school cultures
- understand the importance of collecting and analyzing a wide variety of student achievement data
- explore how to effectively plan, monitor and evaluate school improvement
- understand valuable system-level practices — explore how to work with principals using a variety of data to inform decision-making, examine data collection systems, components of and processes for creating system plans, implementation rubrics and the role of collaborative inquiry
- collectively apply this additional new knowledge to analysis of the current system-level practices.
Module 5: Instructional Practices
- understand conditions for learning, universal design for learning, tiered interventions, differentiated instruction, assessment and high-yield strategies
- identify the role of professional learning, collaborative inquiry and the value of learning walks
- discuss system-level practices to ensure a strong instructional program
- explore how to monitor the quality of teaching through classroom and school walkthroughs, including challenging conversations and probing the strong connection between school improvement plans, system plans and budget
- distinguish between professional development and learning
- collectively apply their new knowledge to analysis of the current system-level practices.
Module 6: Collaborative Inquiry Plan for System Leaders
- develop a collaborative inquiry plan for system leaders in your jurisdiction by addressing a series of unique questions
- actively apply the new knowledge acquired during the program to your plan
The content of the system-level leadership program is founded on research that points to a clear and powerful connection between effective school-level and system-level leadership practices. Our programming consequently aligns in focus and structure, and while elements overlap in selected content, they bring a particular and unique perspective to the learning process. Understanding what effective schools and school-level leadership looks like is the crucial foundation for delivering effective system-level support and thinking in a truly “system” mindset
Our system-level program stands as the base for discussions with jurisdictions about the specifics of the program. It is imperative that the program is contextualized to ensure alignment between the program outcomes and the system priorities. For example, in addition to international data, the program will focus on local student achievement data.
All modules are highly interactive and use a broad range of strategies; therefore, registration is limited to a maximum of 30 per group. Each module also requires the online submission of a personal reflection following each learning experience.
An online learning forum that provides learning resources, a stop/start/continue quiz for day one, reflection submission, and program evaluation. It also provides a forum for discussions during the periods between the sessions, thereby extending and building the collaborative environment.
Typical Delivery Schedule
- 3-day session for Modules 1 and 2
- 3-day session for Modules 4 and 5
- 2-day session for Modules 3 and 6
International School Leadership issues an individual certificate for those who have met the program requirements. Co-branding of the certificate is available.
- Onsite modules 1-5 are $400 CAD per module plus venue costs. A minimum of 15 registrants is required. Module 6 is $100 CAD per participant.
- Online modules are not available.
Contracted delivery prices are available and determined by participant enrolment and specific site costs.
Modules 1 and 2 Recently Rated at 4.8 out of 5
“I liked the system and structure of mixing theory with practice. The leaders left the education not only with more theory but also with a toolbox …”
“It sits very strongly with me and I feel like it was the start of a new era! We started to understand ourselves better and each other - really got a common language. It gave us energy and took energy to participate but in a good way.”
“You had to be active all the time and couldn’t just sit back and collect information.”
I practice models I learned when I work with my principals and I ask my principals if they do the same. I think and plan my meetings more careful and spend more time on planning.
“I have better meetings; all meetings start with purpose and I follow up how it has become. I ask my leaders to give me feedback on my leadership and how I can get better. I report how my leaders experience my leadership.”
“I liked that the program pushed and created participation with everyone in the organization.”
“Great week, amazing colleagues and instructive discussions. I gained new knowledge, wisdom and perspective on what I already knew. Thank you for these days.”
“Inspiring and engaging days.”
Jurisdictions that have engaged ISL in the delivery of the program:
Scottish College for Educational Leadership
Municipality of Malmo, Sweden
Joni Heard is a passionate, committed educator driven by the highest standards. For over three decades, Joni has served in many different leadership roles: teacher, instructor, associate professor, consultant, elementary school principal and Education Officer with the Ministry of Education.
Joni’s experiences with International School Leadership include facilitating online and onsite courses for current and aspiring educational school leaders. She also provides workshop presentations to international education study tours held in Toronto, Canada.
Her most recent appointments have been in Peru, Sweden, and Scotland. In working for the Ministry of Education in Peru, Joni was involved in two large projects: a coaching program for school leaders and a professional development continuum for school leaders. In Malmo, Sweden, Joni delivered the system-level program to senior leaders and lead a team of 6 instructors in delivering the school-level program. In Scotland, Joni is currently delivering the system-level program to two cohorts of system leaders in Scotland.
Joni has also delivered the school-level program in Denmark, Norway, Brazil, Belgium, Australia, and Peru. Online delivery has generated global connections for Joni, many who refer to her as a friend.
Earlier in her career, Joni worked as an Education Officer with the Leadership Development Branch of the Ministry of Education in Ontario and during that time was the provincial lead for Mentoring for Newly Appointed School Leaders, chaired the Ontario Leadership Congress and supported school districts across the province in implementing the Board Leadership Development Strategy.
Other professional experiences include her role as sessional instructor and faculty advisor at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology, Faculty of Education and as instructor for Principal’s Qualifications Course at York University for many years. Joni continues to consult with the Ontario Ministry of Education on various education related initiatives.
“Joni inspires and engages participants with her knowledge and interaction skills … perfect modeling of methods to use within schools, both in classrooms and during teacher collaboration time.”