Temple Independent School District is partnering with an Austin-based non-profit organization to provide aspiring principals with leadership training through a new 18-month program.
TISD is one of the first 15 school districts in Texas invited to participate in the Holdsworth Leadership Collaborative, a program of The Holdsworth Center.
“We’re excited to learn from and contribute to the development of the educators in this collaborative,” Superintendent Bobby Ott said. “Because at the end of the day, the leadership of a district influences generations of students and we want to be at our best for our kids and their families.”
The program is designed to help district leaders create systems that ensure that aspiring principals who are ready to step into leadership roles when positions are available.
Principals — critical to impacting children’s learning — must be more prepared to navigate ambiguity and respond to challenges with creativity as schools evolve, one goal of the program, according to a news release.
Temple ISD usually needs one or two new principals each year — and finding the right person makes a big difference to students and families since the administrator often influences children nearly as much as their teacher, officials said.
“Because principals influence the working conditions and skill level of every teacher in the building, they have a huge — and often unseen — impact on students in the classroom,” Dr. Lindsay Whorton, president of The Holdsworth Center, said in the release. “Temple ISD recognizes this and is committed to ensuring its students benefit from outstanding leadership.”
During the 18-month program, Ott and two other district leaders — Lisa Adams, assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction and Donna Ward, assistant superintendent of human resources — will attend learning sessions at The Holdsworth Center’s campus on Lake Austin.
The administrators will learn best management practices from organizations inside and outside of education, and then will work to design sustainable leadership systems and practices for TISD, officials said.
In addition to TISD, entities from around Texas participating include College Station, Corpus Christi, Conroe, Eanes, Irving, La Porte, Pasadena, Plano, Sheldon, San Marcos, Tomball and Waco independent school districts as well as the Mission and Los Fresnos consolidated independent school districts,
The Holdsworth Center, founded by H-E-B Chairman Charles Butt in 2017, is covering the programming costs, thanks to financial support from its founder and other philanthropic supporters. The center’s mission is to improve public education by supporting and developing educational leaders through its partnership and superintendent leadership programs.