The Educational Leadership programs meet the needs of educators who seek to acquire advanced career and professional development, and the leadership skills and credentials necessary to function effectively in preK-12 school settings under the Intermediate Administrator/Supervisor Certificate. Graduates of the program who are certified as intermediate administrators or supervisors will be eligible for such positions as elementary or secondary principal/assistant principal, program coordinator, department head, and for positions on the staffs of central offices (through the level of assistant superintendent), regional educational agencies, and the state Department of Education.
Conceptual Framework, Standards, and Program Design
The CCSU theme and conceptual framework for programs, Preparing Leaders to Serve Their Communities, identifies three roles of the education professional: active learner, facilitator of learning for all students, and reflective and collaborative practitioner. The department's conceptual framework and outcomes for the educational leadership program have emerged from the CCSU conceptual framework, and from our understanding of several core documents: Standards for School Leaders(Connecticut State Department of Education, 1998), Defining Effective Leadership for Connecticut's Schools (Leithwood and Duke, 1997), and Principals for our Changing Schools (National Policy Board for Educational Administrators). As such, the work we do derives from several areas of research: transformational school leadership, leadership and school restructuring, leadership and effects on learning for all students, and the literature of organizational learning. In addition, we have added our own distinctive concerns about the preparation of leaders for diverse and multicultural environments.
Our program is nationally accredited (NCATE/Educational Leadership Constituents Council) and is designed to meet Standards for Advanced Programs in Educational Leadership published by the National Policy Board for Educational Administrators. These standards are illustrated below.
ELCC Standards (Educational Leadership Constituent Council)
Candidates who complete the program will meet the following standards:
ELCC Standard 1.0:
A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student by collaboratively facilitating the development, articulation, implementation, and stewardship of a shared school vision of learning through the collection and use of data to identify school goals, assess organizational effectiveness, and implement school plans to achieve school goals; promotion of continual and sustainable school improvement; and evaluation of school progress and revision of school plans supported by school-based stakeholders.
ELCC Standard 2.0:
A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student by sustaining a school culture and instructional program conducive to student learning through collaboration, trust, and a personalized learning environment with high expectations for students; creating and evaluating a comprehensive, rigorous and coherent curricular and instructional school program; developing and supervising the instructional and leadership capacity of school staff; and promoting the most effective and appropriate technologies to support teaching and learning within a school environment.
ELCC Standard 3.0:
A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student by ensuring the management of the school organization, operation, and resources through monitoring and evaluating the school management and operational systems; efficiently using human, fiscal, and technological resources in a school environment; promoting and protecting the welfare and safety of school students and staff; developing school capacity for distributed leadership; and ensuring that teacher and organizational time is focused to support high-quality instruction and student learning.
ELCC Standard 4.0:
A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student by collaborating with faculty and community members, responding to diverse community interests and needs, and mobilizing community resources on behalf of the school by collecting and analyzing information pertinent to improvement of the school's educational environment; promoting an understanding, appreciation, and use of the diverse cultural, social, and intellectual resources within the school community; building and sustaining positive school relationships with families and caregivers; and cultivating productive school relationships with community partners.
ELCC Standard 5.0:
A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student by acting with integrity, fairness, and in an ethical manner to ensure a school system of accountability for every student's academic and social success by modeling school principles of self-awareness, reflective practice, transparency, and ethical behavior as related to their roles within the school; safeguarding the values of democracy, equity, and diversity within the school; evaluating the potential moral and legal consequences of decision making in the school; and promoting social justice within the school to ensure that individual student needs inform all aspects of schooling.
ELCC Standard 6.0:
A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student by understanding, responding to, and influencing the larger political, social, economic, legal, and cultural context through advocating for school students, families, and caregivers; acting to influence local, district, state, and national decisions affecting student learning in a school environment; and anticipating and assessing emerging trends and initiatives in order to adapt school-based leadership strategies.
ELCC Standard 7.0:
A building-level education leader applies knowledge that promotes the success of every student through a substantial and sustained educational leadership internship experience that has school-based field experiences and clinical internship practice within a school setting and is monitored by a qualified, on-site mentor.
Common Core of Leading: Connecticut School Leadership Standards (2012)
Performance Expectation 1: Vision, Mission, and Goals: Education leaders ensure the success and achievement of all students by guiding the development and implementation of a shared vision of learning, a strong organizational mission, and high expectations for student performance.
Performance Expectation 2: Teaching and Learning: Education leaders ensure the success and achievement of all students by monitoring and continuously improving teaching and learning.
Performance Expectation 3: Organizational Systems and Safety: Education leaders ensure the success and achievement of all students by managing organizational systems and resources for a safe, high-performing learning environment.
Performance Expectation 4: Families and Stakeholders: Education leaders ensure the success and achievement of all students by collaborating with families and other stakeholders to respond to diverse community interests and needs and to mobilize community resources.
Performance Expectation 5: Ethics and Integrity: Education leaders ensure the success and achievement of all students and staff by modeling ethical behavior and integrity.
Performance Expectation 6: The Education System: Education leaders ensure the success and achievement of all students and advocate for their students, faculty and staff needs by influencing social, cultural, economic, legal, and political contexts affecting education.
Finally, throughout the program students are expected to develop and enhance their skills in fourteen specific areas. The first twelve are the standards of the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP); the last two are important focal areas of CCSU's program. When candidates write about activities throughout their program, they should reflect about their growth and learning in these skill areas. Candidate performance throughout the program should reflect progress in developing the 14 skills. These are illustrated below.
Leadership Skill Areas
Problem analysis. Ability to seek out relevant data and analyze complex information to determine the important elements of a problem situation; searching for information with a purpose.
Judgment. Ability to reach logical conclusions and make high quality decisions based on available information; skill in identifying educational needs and setting priorities; ability to evaluate critically written communications.
Organizational ability. Ability to plan, schedule and control the work of others; skill in using resources in an optimal fashion; ability to deal with a volume of paperwork and heavy demands on one's time.
Decisiveness. Ability to recognize when a decision is required and to act quickly and appropriately.
Leadership. Ability to get others involved in solving problems; ability to recognize when a group requires direction, to interact with a group effectively and to guide them to the accomplishment of a task.
Sensitivity. Ability to perceive the needs, concerns, and personal problems of others; skill in conflicts, tact in dealing with persons from different backgrounds; ability to deal effectively with people concerning emotional issues; knowing what information to communicate and to whom.
Stress tolerance. Ability to perform under pressure and during opposition; ability to think on oneï's feet.
Oral communications. Ability to make a clear oral presentation of facts and ideas.
Written communications. Ability to express ideas clearly in writing and to write appropriately for different audiences students, parents, teachers, etc.
Range of interest. Competence to discuss issues related to education, politics, current events, economics, finance, etc.; desire to participate actively in events.
Personal motivation. Need to achieve in all activities attempted; evidence that work is important to personal satisfaction; ability to be self-policing.
Educational values. Possession of a well-reasoned educational philosophy; receptiveness to new ideas and change.
Leading for learning. Ability to focus all attention on student learning.
Multicultural awareness. Sensitivity to diversity and equity in education.
Throughout the program, students are expected to reflect regularly and deeply about their knowledge and understanding of, skill development in, and dispositions toward the ELCC Standards, the seven Connecticut Leader Standards, and the fourteen specific NASSP skill areas. This type of reflection is a critical component of the program and incorporated into all courses. Students must clearly demonstrate their growth in these areas in order to progress through and graduate from the program.