VASS is proud to introduce Cohort 2 of the Virginia Superintendents Leadership Academy (VSLA). Congratulations to our superintendents who were recently accepted into the program. They are positioned to continue the outstanding development of the VASS VSLA, an exclusive Professional Learning Community, uniquely designed to meet the challenges and opportunities of Virginia superintendents.
VSLA is a 12-month competency-based training program designed for current Virginia superintendents who desire to serve as leading change agents through innovation and deeper learning in their school division. The Academy bases its curriculum on the acquisition of leadership competencies identified in the Profile of a Virginia Leader, which was presented to the Virginia Board of Education in July 2020. There are a number of superintendent academies throughout the country; however, the VASS VSLA is the only academy uniquely designed to meet the challenges and opportunities of Virginia superintendents. Participants who successfully complete VSLA requirements will receive a Certificate of Recognition from VASS, and from the Governor, as well as recertification points for their licensure renewal.
Participation in the VSLA is a significant investment in personal and professional growth, providing participants with the opportunity to institutionalize lessons learned within their own school divisions that lead to student success. The academy is structured around a series of in-person and virtual meetings, and each participant completes a Capstone Project, which is focused on a contemporary problem of practice. Participants are each assigned an Executive Coach—a current or recently retired superintendent, whose primary responsibility is to help support the superintendent and facilitate their Capstone Project. During the year-long program, participants examine, analyze, and investigate approaches to innovation, deeper learning, and engagement for superintendents as lead change agents who demonstrate outstanding instructional leadership and address the needs of increasingly diverse student populations through the lens of equity for all students.
By Marcus J. Newsome
According to Tory Frerichs, vice president of investment services at Country Financial, “There are many reasons Americans could be feeling good about their financial futures right now. Savings rates have gone up, we are hearing positive news about a Covid-19 vaccine and the stock market is at an all-time high.” As more Americans are staying home, personal savings rates have hit a record high fueling hopes for a strong economic recovery. Conversely, groups including people of color, lower earners, women and workers with less education, continue to struggle (Dickler, 2020).
No issue is more urgent in public education than achieving and ensuring equity in student learning throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. Equity is a multifaceted issue that reflects variability in both geographic location and student demographics across the Commonwealth as well as per pupil expenditures and students’ access to the full range of instructional content and programs essential to success after graduation, regardless of where a student lives. As leaders of public education, we must take a comprehensive approach to achieving and ensuring an equitable education for all students in Virginia so that race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, special education status, learning ability level, family circumstances, culture, and gender identity are no longer predictors of success. The Commonwealth can achieve these systemic improvements by ensuring that all students have what they need, exactly when they need it, to be successful in school. In order to accomplish this, we must be deliberate in providing the appropriate supports, removing barriers, creating needed learning environments, closing current gaps in opportunity, and changing the current level of educational funding that will ensure equitable opportunities for all students.
Click on the LINK BELOW to access VA DOE Coronavirus Information and Resources, communication and recommendations from VASS, and VASS Business Partner Resources to assist educators.
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