Seven SLPS Leaders Reimagine Their Schools

The newly launched Re-design Fellowship selected seven SLPS school leaders to receive a $10,000 stipend in support of their proposal to ‘reimagine their schools.’ Participants have also committed to remaining in their principal role for an additional two years.

According to the Learning Policy Institute, “key influences on [teacher] turnover include a lack of administrative support, working in districts with lower salaries, dissatisfactions with testing and accountability pressures, lack of opportunities for advancement, and dissatisfaction with working conditions.” Saint Louis Public Schools reflects this national trend, and more specifically, our data tells us that time and again, teachers select ‘administrative support and/or school leadership’ as the number one reason for exiting the District, even over compensation.

The St. Louis Public Schools Foundation, therefore, invests in school leaders as the lever to retain excellent teachers, who provide the most direct support to students.

Principals and schools participating in this year’s inaugural Re-design Fellowship include:

  1. Brandon Clay, George Washington Carver Academy
  2. Kelly Casper, Mullanphy-Botanical Garden Investigative Learning Center
  3. DaMaris White, Pierre Laclede Elementary School
  4. Enna Dancy, Roosevelt High School
  5. Chad Rooney, Shenandoah Elementary School
  6. Brenda Smith, Vashon High School
  7. Carla Cunigan, Woodward Elementary School

For the next nine months selected leaders and additional school team members will 1) participate in nationwide learning tours with peers in like communities, 2) work with expert coaches and receive professional development through the Washington University Institute of School Partnership, and 3) implement their ideas in their home schools.

The SLPS Foundation is raising funds to support the immediate implementation of this program and the ongoing support of our outstanding school leaders as they implement their work. This critical investment in our school leaders costs approximately $45,000/principal. Our goal is to raise funds in support of the critical learning components for our amazing school leaders, including travel to high performing schools for our leaders to bring back excellent ideas and apply them in a St. Louis context.

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