A new video, produced by Michaela Fray and staff at the Regional Office of Education #1, captures the work of the LEAD Project.

The LEAD Project is designed to increase principal effectiveness in areas that lead to improvements in teaching and learning. The project goals include developing effective principals in public and private schools located in rural, suburban, or urban settings that:

  • Increase principal time spent on instruction improvements
  • Improve instructional quality by engaging teachers in an on-going school improvement process
  • Positively impact student learning and school culture, particularly with high-need students

The Lead project’s theory of action is that school-level student achievement will increase in schools where principals act as strong instructional leaders and who engage teachers through schoolwide structures focused on improving instructional quality. According to the TEAM Lead theory of action, principals engaged in professional learning with their staff will create and maintain school culture, focusing school-wide practices on instructional excellence, and the principal will spend more time directly with teacher teams and individual teachers to improve instruction. Principals’ direct engagement with teachers will improve instructional quality, resulting in increases in student achievement. LEAD coaches (who were former effective administrators themselves) support the work of the principals through one-on-one support.

The LEAD project is jointly administered by the Center for the Study of Education Policy (CSEP) and the DuPage Regional Office of Education. The project collaborates with four regions in Illinois including Regional Offices of Education (ROE) 1, 17, 19 and 28 in addition to the Andrew. M. Greeley Center for Catholic Education at Loyola University and three university Education Administration Departments located at Illinois State University, North Central College, and Western Illinois University. The ROEs serve as LEAD Hubs designed to serve as a regional/local connection point that brings the schools, universities, and communities together. The idea of the LEAD Hub is to attract, place, support, and retain school leaders that are well trained to meet the needs of the whole child within a culturally responsive context that maximizes regional resources, builds regional capacity, and creates a highly successful, sustainable leadership pipeline. Each Hub is staffed with a LEAD Coordinator to help facilitate the work and maximize the outcomes of the LEAD Project.

The LEAD projects are funded by the Supporting Effective Educator Development (SEED) and Education Innovation and Research (EIR) Grant Programs at the United States Department of Education. The LEAD Hub work is supported through funding by the W. Clement and Jessie V. Stone Foundation.