Leaders Complete 2020-2021 District Leadership Fellows Program

The 2020-2021 cohort of the SMU District Leadership Fellows program wrapped up the year with a final meeting.  Fellows participated in a roundtable on Social Emotional Learning programs for educators and provided updates on their projects.    

District Leadership Fellows 2020-2021

The 2020-2021 cohort of District Leadership Fellows has wrapped up with a virtual year-end retreat.  The session opened with a roundtable discussion titled “Social Emotional Health for Educators: Caring for Those who Care for our Kids”.  Juany Valdespino-Gaytán, Executive Director of Engagement Services at Dallas Independent School District, described the Social Emotional Learning (SEL) program that has been implemented for staff and students in Dallas ISD.  District Leadership Fellows program facilitator, and Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources at Waco ISD, Dr. Josie Hernanadez-Gutierrez described the process underway at Waco ISD to implement a Social Emotional Learning program for district staff.    

Social Emotional Learning graphic

Fellows then provided year-end updates on their projects.  Dr. Gerald Hudson, Superintendent at Cedar Hill ISD in Texas, described his initiative to work with the community to create a Community Based Accountability System for the district.  Ms. Khechara Bradford, Deputy Superintendent of Learning at Providence Public Schools in Rhode Island, described her transition from education leadership in Texas to Rhode Island.  Other Fellows also presented updates, and discussed the common themes that emerged from their year’s work. 

The leaders had a chance to reflect on key insights and lessons learned in their time in the program, and to think through critical next steps as they move forward to next year.  The session ended by circling back to the important work the leaders have engaged in throughout the year, both in terms of moving their projects forward, and in terms of building a network of peers to support each other as they continue to learn and grow. 

Two quotes from District Leadership Fellows

Information on applying to join the 2021-2022 cohort of District Leadership Fellows is available here. 

To learn more about Institute for Leadership Impact programs, visit our website, email us at leadershipimpact@smu.edu, and engage with us on Twitter.  

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