FWCS awarded $750,000 for leadership development - August 01, 2007

Record Number: 3261
Displayed from: Aug 01, 2007 , until: Oct 01, 2007

The Wallace Foundation has awarded a $750,000 grant to Fort Wayne Community Schools to train and develop leaders at all levels from the classroom to the board room. The money is for the 2007-08 school year and is potentially renewable, in part, for the next two years. The New York City-based Foundation has given FWCS an annual $1 million grant for the last five years money that has been used to develop the leadership skills of principals. As part of the original grant, the district created an administrative internship program to train teachers as potential administrators under successful principals. So far, 43 administrative interns participated in the program and 34 now serve as principals, assistant principals, or in some other administrative capacity. "This new grant allows us to build, deepen and expand on the work of the previous five years," said Linda Roman, director of professional development and administrator for the grant money. Roman said the fact FWCS was invited to re-apply shows The Wallace Foundation believes in the work of FWCS and the direction it is going. "We know that effective leadership in our schools is crucial to ensuring that we achieve our national goal of improved student achievement, especially for the most disadvantaged, says Richard Laine, Director of Education, The Wallace Foundation. "The Wallace Foundation has been pleased to support Fort Wayne Community Schools, along with other districts and states across the country, with the goal of generating useful lessons on how to effectively train and support leaders in ways that support improved teaching and learning." The new grant is focused on those who "lead learning" including principals, lead teachers, area administrators and board members. It is designed to create an aligned system of leader development that includes training, mentoring and professional development integrated into a larger vision of education improvement. The program builds on previous work to ensure clear standards for leaders, stronger training, increased accountability and more rigorous accreditation criteria to make sure leaders are qualified, not just certified. With nearly 32,000 students, Fort Wayne Community Schools is Indiana's second-largest school district. FWCS proudly allows families to choose any of its 53 schools through its successful school-choice program creating diversity in each school, including some with more than 75 languages spoken. FWCS offers seven magnet schools focusing on areas such as fine arts or Montessori at the elementary and middle school level as well as the prestigious International Baccalaureate program for high school students. The Wallace Foundation seeks to enable institutions to expand learning and enrichment opportunities for all people by sharing effective ideas and practices. Its three current objectives are: *Strengthen education leadership to improve student achievement *Enhance after-school learning opportunities *Build appreciation and demand for the arts For more information and research on these and other related topics, visit the Wallace Knowledge Center at www.wallacefoundation.org.

With nearly 30,000 students, Fort Wayne Community Schools is one of the largest school districts in Indiana. FWCS proudly allows families to choose any of its 50 schools through its successful school-choice program creating diversity in each school, including some with more than 75 languages spoken. FWCS offers seven magnet schools focusing on areas such as science and math, communication, fine arts or Montessori at the elementary and middle school level. In high school, students can choose from the prestigious International Baccalaureate program, Project Lead the Way or New Tech Academy as well as other rigorous academic and specialty training programs.