Balanced Leadership

The Kansas Association of School Boards formed an exclusive partnership with the Mid-Continent Research for Education and Learning (McREL).  Through this partnership, KASB offers leadership seminars for building administrators, using the McREL program of Balanced Leadership.

The McREL program is a statistically proven methodology designed to provide building administrators with the necessary leadership skills to improve student learning.  The seminars deal with building level skills.

Because of its study of leadership, McREL has developed the Balanced Leadership Framework.  The framework consists of four major components.  They are:
  • Identification of 21 responsibilities that affect student learning.
  • Trains principals to focus on the changes that make a difference in student achievement.
  • Trains administrators to manage the magnitude of change.
  • Guides principals on how to develop a purposeful community to effect student achievement.
Participants in the training engage in six sessions spread over four months, mid-October though mid-January. They receive knowledge as well as hands-on activities designed to lead them through the four components of the framework.

Contact KASB for details:
Brian Jordan
KASB Leadership Services
800-432-2471
Bjordan@kasb.org
 
KASB's Balanced Leadership training uses "School Leadership That Works: From Research to Results"

School Leadership That Works®: From Research to Results, available exclusively from ASCD. 







About McREL


McREL – the Mid-continent Regional Educational Laboratory,  is based in Denver, CO and was founded in 1966 as a non-profit organization to assist educators through research and guided training. The organization is dedicated to the dissemination of best practices designed to improve student learning. McREL has provided theory based practices across the United States.  Its first major work centered on classroom instructional behaviors that make a difference in learning.  


What others say...


"The 21 areas of leadership gave the administrators researched based information to help guide them through the decision making process."

"McRel's Balanced Leadership training through KASB provided our entire administrative team, plus several teacher leaders the knowledge and skill to continue leading our district through this era of challenge and change. The 21 areas of leadership gave the administrators researched based information to help guide them through the decision making process.  It was money and time well spent."

Michael Mathes, Superintendent, Seaman USD 345
"It helped me to become more reflective in my practice and more aware of the significant differences between leading and managing."


"Balanced Leadership teaches and reinforces leadership skills focused on the "right" work in schools: student achievement, professional development, safe schools, and collaboration with stakeholders. Change is inevitable in education. Initiating, embracing, and managing change in a school system requires leaders to recognize how change impacts stakeholders differently, and Balanced Leadership training provides this perspective. The Balanced Leadership training in which I participated provided the framework for how I approach any issue in my district. It helped me to become more reflective in my practice and more aware of the significant differences between leading and managing. I choose to lead by being an informed, reflective, collaborative, and considerate practitioner."

Nadine Smith, Superintendent, Rock Hills USD 107
"Balanced Leadership is essentially about improving instruction and schools to support student learning... ." 

“Balanced Leaderships was a great opportunity to learn how to manage change by providing guidelines and structure to a process that can be very difficult.  As an administrator, it really helped me understand the different levels people are at in the change process, and it also provided the tools to make the changes in the most effective way to impact student achievement.  It was also a powerful tool to learn the research behind school change.  When you take so much time and effort to change something, you want to make sure those changes are important and impactful. Balanced Leadership is essentially about improving instruction and schools to support student learning, and anyone looking to improve these things should take this seminar!”

Eric Reid, Superintendent, Ellsworth/Kanopolis/Geneseo USD 327
"I would highly recommend that administrative teams attend this training!" 


"All of our administrators have completed Balanced Leadership Training and it has made a tremendous difference in our leadership team.  In times like these having everyone on the same page has provided us with the opportunity to make significant improvements in achievement while eliminating missteps.   I would highly recommend that administrative teams attend this training!"

John Burke, Superintendent, Haysville USD 261
"We are now aware of the leadership responsibilities that are necessary for a change initiative to be positive."


Impact Balanced Leadership had on the administrators, staff and district:  
  • We learned to identify specific leadership responsibilities and practices when dealing with situations in our district, resulting in positive effects on achievement.
  • We know that strong principals are not always effective when using student achievement as the measure of effectiveness.  Being an effective manager does not make you an effective instructional leader.  This training made us aware of areas we need to improve on to assure we are instructional leaders.
  • We learned the relationship between leadership and change.  We are now aware of the leadership responsibilities that are necessary for a change initiative to be positive.
  • We learned the importance of a shared vision in our district and the inclusion of staff in leadership responsibilities. 
  • We learned the importance of shared leadership that results in shared responsibility and mutual accountability toward a common goal.
Terrel Harrison, Superintendent, Colby USD 315
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Building Leader Mentoring and Support
KASB and Kansas education service centers have formed a partnership to bring the building administrator training to all regions of the state. 

Partners include Smoky Hill Service Center (Salina), Greenbush (Girard and Topeka) and South Central Kansas Education Service Center (Clearwater). 

Using the powerful resources of McREL, combined with the expertise and support from both KASB and service center staff, every building leader has access to this cost-effective training while minimizing the time away from the building and district.  

This program meets KSDE requirements for the professional building leader's license. Participants who already hold this credential will earn professional development points for renewal of the KSDE license. 

Contact KASB for details:
 Dr. Brian Jordan, KASB Leadership Services, 800-432-2471 bjordan@kasb.org


New and experienced building principals gain valuable skills and knowledge through “Building Leader Mentoring and Support. 
This program is co-sponsored by KASB and several regional service centers. Sessions are held at regional service centers and KASB in Topeka, and resources include an online community of educational leaders from across the state. Although the program was designed to assist the beginning principal, it soon became apparent more experienced principals could gain significant skills through active participation, said Dr. Brian Jordan, KASB’s Assistant Executive Director for Leadership Services.

“The benefits of investing in the professional development and support a building leader needs to be successful are long-lasting,” he said.

Equally important are aligning outcomes and processes. “Research clearly shows successful school systems are those using a common leadership vocabulary with agreed upon outcomes and processes at the building through the school board levels,” Jordan said.

The KASB/service center program focuses on both the art and science of leadership. Participants develop skills required to align their building to district-level processes and outcomes. Instructional leadership skills - such as human resource management to ensure high quality classroom teaching - are also part of the training. 

This program aligns with McREL’s “What Matters Most” framework, supporting district-wide alignment around common outcomes and processes. The “What Matters Most” framework is the foundation of many of the services and supports KASB provides district level leaders and boards of education. This further strengthens the system-wide development of common leadership vocabulary, agreed upon outcomes and processes. This program meets KSDE requirements for the professional building leader's license. Participants who already hold this credential will earn professional development points for renewal of the KSDE license. 

The five sessions include interactive training, discussions, collaborative problem solving and mentoring for monitoring and feedback. Two onsite building visit by KASB leadership staff are also included. Agenda topics are timed to assist principals with the duties and responsibilities they are performing during that period of the year.

Topics include:
  • Climate and Culture
  • Using Data Effectively
  • Effective Communication
  • Instructional Leadership
  • Supervision and Evaluation
  • Conducting Difficult Conversations
  • Hiring the Best and Brightest
  • Increasing Capacity
  • Motivating Staff
  • Course Scheduling

Following completion of this one-year program, KASB recommends participation in "Balanced Leadership." See program details at left.


The following is a comment from a first-year participant:


“As a first year principal there are numerous situations and circumstances you cannot possibly be prepared for unless you have prior experience in those situations. By attending the new principal support sessions you are able to gain perspective on many of those uncertainties. Even though you haven’t dealt with them first hand, you are able to at the least be prepared for the situation. 

"Many of the complex and insignificant situations you are going to face are covered in these sessions; including how to deal with parents, how to deal with students, curriculum, dealing with faculty and staff, making positive changes and public relations. The presenters share their numerous years of experience with the participants. The information shared has been invaluable to the success I have had as a first year administrator. They have guided me in the direction I need to go to grow as a professional in administration. 

"I would not only recommend this new principal support training, I believe it should be a requirement for all new administrators and even young less experienced administrators.”