Leadership Matters: 2019 Summer Leadership Institute
DISTRICT | July 25, 2019
Leadership Matters: 2019 Summer Leadership Institute

More than 1,000 principals and assistant principals from each of our schools came together for a two-day professional learning conference held at the McCormick Place July 15 – 16. The 2019 Summer Leadership Institute focused on the theme, “leadership matters.”

“These district-wide convenings are critical to achieving equity across CPS,” said Lauren Secatore, director of the CPS Office of Teaching and Learning.

“When you get every school leader in a room together to share best practices and learn from one another, then we can ensure that every student, in every neighborhood, is getting the best of CPS!”

CEO Janice K. Jackson helped kick off the empowering event by sharing her vision for the district, particularly on equity and her goal-setting process. 

Principal Kusan Thomas, from Graham Training Center High School, said this event is needed and much welcomed.

“This is great,” she said. “I’m learning from my peers, hearing from them what’s working, what’s not, and just overall hearing suggestions on how we can make our schools better.”

Assistant Principal Victor Moore, from Alexander Graham Elementary School, agreed.

“You get a chance to work with your colleagues, experience learning about critical matters with people that you can build network relationships with, so it’s good in that regard.”

Dozens of professional learning sessions were offered, allowing participants like Moore to pick and choose which ones they wanted to attend. 

Moore attended a session on implementing sexual education, which he said he plans to bring to his students at Alexander Graham Elementary School this year.

Some of the workshops included:

  • Starting English Learner Services from Scratch
  • Cyber Security Aware Classrooms
  • Leading for Instructional Equity for Students with Disabilities 

McKay Elementary School’s assistant principal, Nancy Mays, attended a session on Transcendental Meditation. 

“It was interesting and effective,” she said, adding that her school already offers “Calm Classrooms” twice a day.

“It’s something that’s needed in our school with all of the trauma that our kids come to school with so we’re going to look into implementing this.”

In addition to the sessions, the principals and assistant principals were able to take free headshots and visit the partner/vendor fair.

“I hope this is something the district keeps going with because this is good, for all of us to get together and learn from each other is awesome because we don’t really get that time,” said Thomas.