Tag Archives: cu denver

Leadership for social justice: Class update 2

Class updateThis is my second update on my new summer Master’s seminar, Leadership for Social Justice. As I said in my last post about this class, my six students have been co-creating the class with me…

We have continued to approach the class through a variety of social justice lenses. After an initial focus on anti-racist school leadership, we broadened our lens the next week to take a look at culturally responsive-sustaining teaching and leadership. We also had collections of readings and multimedia on Latinx, Asian American and Pacific Islander, Indigenous, and Middle Eastern students and families. My students chose what interested them and we integrated those into our class discussion.

The following week we shifted gears a bit and focused on student / family socioeconomic status. In addition to a wide variety of readings, I introduced my students to the work of Richard Kahlenberg and we also critically dissected Ruby Payne’s writing in this area. We dove deeper into ideas of intersectionality and seemed to dwell more on policy concerns in this particular class.

The week after, we talked about equity leadership related to sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression. We had a rich collection of pre-activities for this class and we also had a guest speaker this evening. Tim Mosseau talked with us about how to create organizational cultures that promote equity, inclusivity, and emotional safety, with a particular focus on LGBTQ-inclusive environments.

We also have been integrating a case study or two from Gorski & Pothini’s book, Case Studies on Diversity and Social Justice Education, into every class session. These give us a chance to apply our understandings toward some real-world scenarios. Unsurprisingly, our conversation has been quite robust!

Like in my other Master’s seminar this summer, my students have been amazing. They’re taking the lead on much of what we do together. Their readings and multimedia, their discussion questions, their guests… all have enriched our learning in ways that are far better than if I had done it alone. I’m going to miss them after next week’s final class session!

Leadership during a crisis: Class update 2

Class updateThis is my second update on my new summer Master’s seminar, Leadership During a Crisis. As I said in my last post about this class, my six students have been co-creating the class with me…

In addition to helping identify readings and multimedia for us to look at before each class session, my students also have taken the lead on identifying guest speakers to come talk with us about crisis leadership. Our second guest speaker was Dr. Susan Luck, a business professor at Pfeiffer University in North Carolina. She talked with us about cognitive bias and its impacts on corporate leadership, organizational communication and transparency, and Kotter’s 8 steps of leading organizational change.

Our third guest was Jack Fishman, Executive Director of the Baltimore Choral Arts Society. He shared with us how the fine arts are adapting during the pandemic and helped us understand some leadership lessons that would be useful for us in P-12 and higher education.

Our fourth guest was Michael Franks, Supervisor of the Respiratory Therapy Department at Porter Adventist Hospital in Denver. His discussion of what effective crisis leadership looks like in medicine and from the COVID floor of the hospital was both inspiring and kinda scary.

I couldn’t be more delighted with how this course has gone this summer. After each guest, we spend an hour debriefing what we just heard and connecting it back to previous conversations and readings. Our understandings of effective crisis leadership in education have been greatly enhanced by the diverse perspectives that we are bringing in from other, non-education societal sectors. Plus my students are incredible. I’m going to be sad to see them go after next week’s final class session!

Leadership for social justice: Class update 1

Class updateThought I’d post a quick update on how my new summer Master’s seminar, Leadership for Social Justice, is going. I’ve got six students in the class. We meet virtually every Monday for a couple of hours, in addition to our other activities.

The students co-constructed their learning experiences with me. We are trying to approach the class through a very broad social justice lens, which means that we’re discussing a variety of different school leadership equity contexts. We spent our first class getting ourselves organized, which included brainstorming some things that we wanted to do together this summer and identifying the learning outcomes that we wanted to achieve. We committed ourselves to focusing on actionable leadership practices, not just ideas and theory. Our course textbook, Equity Visits: A New Approach to Supporting Equity-Focused School and District Leadership, aligns closely with that commitment.

We focused on anti-racist educational leadership practices in our second class. Two students helped curate our readings and multimedia pre-assignments for the week and provided lots of choices for us. The reading that probably sparked the most discussion was Paul Gorski’s article in Educational Leadership on Avoiding Racial Equity Detours. We spent the second half of class deconstructing a couple of race-based educational cases from Gorski’s book, Case Studies on Diversity and Social Justice Education.

My students are completing one-page reflections each week of what is in their heads at the moment. Additionally, each is identifying an inquiry project on an equity-focused topic of their choice. I will share those in a future class update. We are off to a good start!

Leadership during a crisis: Class update 1

Class updateThought I’d post a quick update on how my new summer Master’s seminar, Leadership During a Crisis, is going. I’ve got six students in the class. We meet virtually every Tuesday for a couple of hours, in addition to our other activities.

The students co-constructed their learning experiences with me. We are trying to approach the class with a very broad leadership lens. That means that we’re discussing crisis leadership practices across a variety of societal sectors, not just education. We spent our first class getting ourselves organized, which included brainstorming some things that we wanted to do together this summer and identifying the learning outcomes that we wanted to achieve.

Our first guest was Shawn Loescher, CEO of the Urban Discovery Schools in San Diego, California. He articulated quite passionately what it meant to respond effectively to the needs of students and families during the coronavirus pandemic this spring. We appreciated his values-driven leadership lessons and had an awesome discussion afterward. Our guests for the next two weeks are from the business and fine arts sectors.

My students are completing reflections each week of what is in their heads at the moment. Additionally, two students are going to try their hand at creating a case study on crisis leadership (and hopefully submit for publication). One student is diving deep into an inquiry project and another is creating some professional learning modules for school leaders. Finally, two students are working with me to analyze and write up my Coronavirus Chronicles interview series. They will co-author a book chapter with me and get a publication for their resumes!

Leadership for School Innovation graduate certificate 001: The launch

I received permission from my faculty colleagues and Dean this summer to launch a new Leadership for School Innovation (LSI) graduate certificate. I’ve done this twice before. In 2002 Joan Hughes (now at the University of Texas-Austin) and I received a large federal grant to create the first graduate program in the country designed to prepare technology-savvy school leaders. The $2.5 million School Technology Leadership Initiative at the University of Minnesota created 15 credits of new coursework that was given away – with accompanying pedagogical supports – to ten other university educational leadership programs across the country. Four cohorts of students went through the U. Minnesota program and numerous other students gained new school technology leadership experiences at partner universities. The U. Minnesota academic program is now defunct but my University Council for Educational Administration (UCEA) program center, the Center for the Advanced Study of Technology Leadership in Education (CASTLE), was created that continues the research and service/outreach work. CASTLE is now co-hosted by the University of Kentucky and the University of Colorado Denver. In 2011 my CASTLE co-directors at U. Kentucky and I created the nation’s second graduate program focused on school technology leadership. That program ran for several years and is now an embedded certificate within a teacher leadership program.

This new LSI graduate certificate at CU Denver will be a little different. It will be wholly online like the U. Kentucky program but its focus will be broader than just technology leadership. I also have a design team from across the country that will be helping me outline and frame up the program. More on them in my next post, and more details on the program in the weeks to come…

Our Design Sprint is tomorrow. I’m excited!

Announcing the Jeffco 11 educational leadership blog

Mountains

Our 11th University of Colorado Denver principal licensure cohort for the Jeffco Public Schools is 31 students strong! We’re off to an amazing start. Starting this week, we are sharing resources and blogging about educational leadership issues in addition to our class sessions. Our first three posts involve school vision and mission statements:

We hope you will join us at our Jeffco 11 blog for some great conversations!