IN the LEAD is a highly-focused 8-week Educational Leadership Community of Practice that provides an opportunity for targeted growth.

  • Impact window: August 1 – September 30, 2021
  • Free to Indiana administrator teams
  • Each participant will be given a $300 stipend (one time)
  • In-person with virtual supports
  • Priority Registration ends Friday, August 20

IN the LEAD is an 8-week series of leadership professional learning opportunities sponsored by Keep Indiana Learning, Indiana Department of Education (IDOE), and the Educational Service Centers of Indiana.

Organized into 6 key strands, district teams of administrators will identify and attend workshops in the high-priority topics that are essential to their needs. Each strand is a collaboration of national thought leaders and the Educational Service Centers of Indiana to provide global thinking, local conversation, and professional support.

As an attendee at IN the LEAD, district/school leaders will engage with:

  • Prominent national thought leaders in each strand
  • In-Person 2-day workshops with virtual or self-paced follow ups
  • Communities of practice for on-going support and collaboration

Northern Location

Christos Banquet Center
830 Lincoln Hwy East
Plymouth, IN 46563

Central Location

Central Indiana Educational Service Center (CIESC)
3500 DePauw Blvd.
Pyramid Two, Suite 2020
Indianapolis, IN 46268

Southern Locations

Location Noted with Dates of Each Strand

Leadership Strands

The six leadership strands are based on the critical priorities identified by the IDOE as key areas of impact. They are designed to deliver relevant and applicable strategies, sustainability, and research-based best practices from national experts and authors to support the creation of a local community of practice for the participants.

It is recommended that each district team attend Strand 1: Leading Transformational Change. To best take advantage of strands 2-6 and the needs of individual districts, representatives may select to attend those strands as smaller teams, a whole team, or individually. This will allow for focused professional development in the areas of support identified by the community members rather than a one size fits all response to the need for support in these IDOE priority areas.

Strand 1: Leading Transformational Change

Dr. Jonathan Skolnick

Focused on leading and sustaining positive change, this strand facilitates fundamental changes in practice and shifts in organizational culture that lead to transformational results for adults and students. Designed to target both the adaptive work (shifting mindsets and beliefs, changing habits, and establishing new ones) and technical solutions (tools, protocols, and processes) required for achieving success at scale and sustaining it over time.

Suggested Attendees

Leadership team – This strand develops the unified, coherent approach from leaders and is best done as a team. District attendees in this strand might include Superintendents, Assistant Superintendents, Academic Directors, Principals (essential for a district representative or team to attend this strand, GEER Districts should select new attendees who did not attend the GEER Leadership + Culture workshop).

Presented By Dr. Jonathan Skolnick of KORU STRATEGY GROUP

August 10-11, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm EDT | Northern Indiana
August 18-19, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm EDT | Southern Indiana at Ivy Tech Community College (8204 Hwy 311 Sellersburg, IN 47172)
August 25-26, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm EDT | Central Indiana (Max Capacity Reached, Registration for this location now closed)

Virtual Follow-up Session
September 21, 1:00 – 2:30 pm EDT

Strand 2: Accelerating Learning: Leading Data Analysis

Dr. Pena & Dr. Wessman

Dr. Jorge Peña and Dr. Rob Wessman teach purpose-driven data analysis, supporting leaders to strengthen their individual capacity to:

  • Build data literacy
  • Create meaning from varied and complex data sources, lift patterns, and trends
  • Engage in root-cause analysis
  • Arrive at valid inferences to move to action using accurate information

In this process, Dr. Peña and Dr. Rob Wessman help participants establish a culture of collaboration using evidence in decision-making so that teachers and other educators may collectively create more effective and equitable schools.

Suggested Attendees

Superintendent, Principal, Data Coordinator, Academic Directors

Presented By Dr. Jorge Peña & Dr. Rob Wessman of KORU STRATEGY GROUP

August 12 & 26, September 9 & 16, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm EDT | Virtual

Strand 3: Accelerated Learning: A Culture of Inquiry

Erik Francis

How does a good question challenge students and staff to demonstrate different levels of thinking as categorized by Bloom’s Revised Taxonomy and understand and use their depth of knowledge in the contexts designated by Webb’s DOK Levels? What distinguishes questioning from inquiry?

In this two-day seminar, international author and presenter Erik M. Francis will discuss how to use good questions to promote a culture of inquiry that is academically rigorous, socially and emotionally supportive, and student responsive. Learn to develop and implement a comprehensive schoolwide reform method and model.

By the end of this seminar, participants will learn to:

  • Recognize the eight types of good questions that promote cognitive rigor
  • Understand how good questions challenge students to think deeply and express the depth and extent of their learning
  • Pose and produce good questions to assess and build background knowledge, set the instructional focus, serve as assessments, and personalize learning
  • Rephrase the performance objectives of academic standards and learning targets into good questions that will:
    • “Hook” students’ curiosity and interest
    • Assess and build foundational knowledge
    • Deepen understanding and awareness
    • Develop students’ education, experiences, and endowments into personal expertise
  • Use good questions to engage and encourage comprehension and communication amongst staff, students, and stakeholders
Suggested Attendees

Principals, Assistant Principals, Academic Directors, District Library Program Coordinator


August 10-11, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm EDT | Central Indiana
August 17-18, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm EDT | Northern Indiana
August 24-25, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm EDT | Southern Indiana at Wilson Center 2101 Grace Avenue Charlestown, IN 47111

Strand 4: Accelerating Learning: Leading the Rebound

Dr Nancy Frey

If there ever was a time for our heroic school leadership to persevere, it’s now. Because now, well over one year since the pandemic stretched the resilience and reserves of our school systems, it’s time to “rebound.” It’s time to leverage this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reboot teaching and learning as we know it so that we magnify the effective practices from the past while leveraging the many recent lessons learned.

Inside Leading the Rebound you’ll find immediate actions, mindsets, and approaches to take if we’re to reimagine and improve our schools and school systems. Step by step, you’ll discover explicit guidance on how to:

  • Rebuild teacher agency
  • Rebuild collective teacher efficacy
  • Foreground social and emotional learning
  • Change the learning loss narrative
  • Guide teacher clarity
  • Ensure instructional excellence
  • Use assessments for a range of purposes
  • Design and implement interventions
  • Win back parent-teacher relationship
  • Establish restorative practices
  • Enhance teacher-student and student-student interactions
  • Develop early warning systems for attendance, behavior, and course completion
  • Ensure equitable and restorative grading
  • Enhance PLCs
  • Future-proof teachers and students

Dr. Nancy Frey will unpack Leading the Rebound research, sample planning tools, and other essential tips and strategies—to provide you with a start-to-finish roadmap for navigating this absolutely critical next leg in our journey toward a “better normal.”

Suggested Attendees

Principals, Assistant Principals, Academic Directors

Presented By Dr. Nancy Frey, Visible Learning Author and Researcher

September 13-14, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm EDT | Central Indiana
(Our main conference room is now full, we are still accepting registration for our overflow conference room and for our virtual watch party waitlists.)

Virtual Follow-up Sessions
September 20 – 10:00-11:30 am EDT
September 24 – 12:30-2:00 pm EDT

Strand 5: Competency Based Grading

Dr. Tom Guskey

Effective grading and reporting require more than revising the report card. It means rethinking all the ways we communicate information about student learning. This program is based on what we know about effective grading policies and practices through systematic research. Keeping in mind the many practical challenges teachers face, participants will review the importance of fairness and honesty in grading and describe ways to ensure meaningful communication between teachers, students, and families.

Procedures for implementing new reporting structures are highlighted, including competency-based grading, together with policies and practices that should be avoided due to their negative consequences for students, teachers, and schools.

Suggested Attendees

Principals, Assistant Principals, Academic Directors


August 11-12, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm EDT | Now Virtual Only
September 1-2, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm EDT | Northern Indiana
September 8-9, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm EDT | Central Indiana

Virtual Follow-up Sessions
September 17, 10:00 – 11:30 am & 1:00 – 2:30 pm EDT
September 20, 1:00 – 2:30 pm EDT

Strand 6: Recruiting and Retaining High Quality Teachers

Dr. Terry McDaniel

These two-day workshop sessions for district administrative teams will focus on a variety of elements to recruit and retain high-quality teachers, including:

  • Presenting research and studies concerning the teacher shortage in Indiana and the rest of the nation
  • Examining the practices districts have used to fill the openings
  • The practices districts have used to attract and retain highly qualified teachers
  • Systems thinking
  • The importance of support for teachers
  • Effective orientation programs
  • Marketing practices
  • How to determine and develop effective recruitment and retention programs
Suggested Attendees

Principals, Assistant Principals, Academic Directors, HR Directors

Presented By Dr. Terry McDaniel, leading educational researcher on teacher retention in Indiana at INDIANA STATE UNIVERSITY, DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATIONAL LEADERSHIP

August 10-11, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm EDT | Now Virtual Only
August 17-18, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm EDT | Central Indiana
August 24-25, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm EDT | Northern Indiana

Virtual Follow-up Sessions
September 27, 10:00 – 11:30 am EDT
September 28, 10:00 – 11:30 am EDT
September 29, 10:00 – 11:30 am EDT

Register Now!

Space is limited so register soon! Though you’ll attend IN the LEAD as a team, you’ll need to register individually.

Each participant will receive a $300 honorarium.

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