About

In discussing leadership, President John Quincy Adams once said: “If your actions inspire others to dream more, do more, and become more, you are a leader.”

His logic aptly explains the motivation behind Education Week‘s annual Leaders To Learn From report. With each of these reports, our aim is simply to shine a light on forward-thinking district leaders who seized on good ideas and executed them well in their school systems. The hope is that other educators—and future leaders—in the nation’s 14,000-plus districts will learn from these leaders’ stories and be inspired to “dream more, do more, and become more” in their own districts.

At the very least, they might find a useful innovation to try out themselves.

While many of these leaders are superintendents, the roster can include a sprinkling of administrators and educators who are not normally in the public eye. In the past we’ve recognized a director of nursing services, an instructional technology director, a director of culinary and nutrition services, and many others.

To help find this year’s Leaders To Learn From, Education Week put out a call to readers for nominees. We also sought nominations from the leaders of administrators’ groups in most of the 50 states, as well as from members of the Education Writers Association, a Washington-based organization that includes local education reporters around the country. Education Week‘s own reporters identified leaders who are making a mark within the topical areas they cover. Members of the editorial staff made the final selections.

Each year our nominations reflect a thirst among educators for two things: a little positive recognition, and some good examples to follow.

Positive recognition can provide a soothing balm for educators feeling beset by parental demands, pressure to raise student test scores, and years of budget constraints. Good examples offer models for the way forward. Both are needed to grow the next generation of school district leaders.

Learn about our previous leaders.

— The Editors

Leaders To Learn From

Produced with support from The Wallace Foundation, at www.wallacefoundation.org


2015 Agenda

7:15 a.m.–8:00 a.m.
Networking Breakfast
Join for breakfast with leaders who work in the fields of most interest to you. There’ll be tables for parent engagement, school climate, ed tech, and more!

8:00 a.m.–8:25 a.m.
Welcome, Introductions, and Recognition Presentation
Recognition of the work of 8 of the 15—2015 Leaders To Learn From selected by Education Week.

8:25 a.m.–8:40 a.m.
Breakouts—Meet the Leaders
First 8 Leaders will go to their subject matter tables located throughout the room to discuss with attendees their “Focus of Strength” and to answer any questions attendees have. (Attendees will be encouraged to find their table of interest based on the map of the room provided in the program).

8:40 a.m.–9:10 a.m.
Recognition Presentation Concludes
Recognition of the work of our final 7 Leaders To Learn From.

9:10 a.m.–9:35 a.m
Breakouts—Meet the Leaders
Second group of Leaders will go to their subject matter tables located throughout the room to discuss with attendees their “Focus of Strength” and to answer any questions attendees have.

9:35 a.m.–10:05 a.m.
District Leader Snapshots
(A selection of 2015 Leaders will come to the stage with their reporters and discuss their “Focus of Strength.”)

10:05 a.m.–10:30 a.m.
Midmorning Networking Break

10:30 a.m.–11:30 a.m.
“Three Keys for Maximizing Leadership Impact”
Michael Fullan, education leadership author and expert, and former minister of education, Canada (2003–2013).

11:30 a.m.–12:00 a.m.
District Leader Snapshots
(A selection of 2015 Leaders will come to the stage with their reporters and discuss their “Focus of Strength”).

12:00 a.m.– 12:30 p.m.
“Ask the ED”
Join in a Department of Education Lightning Round featuring Assistant U.S. Secretary of Education Deborah S. Delisle other Department of Education leadership who will take your questions.

12:30 p.m.–1:30 p.m.
Networking Luncheon
Uninterrupted time to mingle with those you’ve met at your tables and at the various tables set up throughout the room during our break-outs.

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