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Evidence-Driven Instructional Leadership Professional Development for Your Entire Team

As a Navigator school, you'll have a school-wide site license to our entire suite of professional development programs:

The High-Performance Instructional Leadership Certification Program
($1495/person value)
Our flagship program on changing teacher practice features 8 modules on evidence-driven feedback:
  1. The Power of Professional Conversation 
  2. High-Performance Habits for Getting Into Classrooms
  3. The Classroom Connection: Understanding Instructional Improvement
  4. Seeing Deeper with Learning Dynamics™
  5. The Power of A Shared Instructional Framework
  6. Gathering, Discussing, and Using Evidence from Classroom Observations
  7. High-Performance Formal Evaluations
  8. Go and See: Fueling Organizational Learning

The Organizational Learning Intensive 
($1495/person value)
Discover how to create sustainable improvement by following the Evidence-Driven Roadmap for Change:
  1. Find Your Bearings
  2. Map The Improvement
  3. Help People Change at the Right Time
  4. Get Close to the Work
  5. Protect & Accelerate the Work
  6. Learn through Evidence-Driven Inquiry
The Instructional Leadership Association
($564 per person per year value)

As a member of the Instructional Leadership Association, you'll gain access to our Repertoire feedback app, plus our weekly and monthly resources to help you advance through the High-Performance Instructional Leadership Roadmap.

If you're a principal...

You already know that instructional leadership is the key to instructional improvement. 

But administrators—even if you have a great team of APs—can't be the only instructional leaders.

If you've ever opened your office door to get into classrooms, only to find a line of people waiting for you, you know the "bottleneck" problem we all face:

  • You supervise too many teachers (3x as many "direct reports" as leaders in the corporate world supervise)
  • Each department has its own specific standards, curriculum, and pedagogy
  • You're inundated with too much data that doesn't directly inform key decisions
  • Too many people need you for too much, all the time

...even though you're experienced, knowledgeable, and working long hours.

The Myth of the Data-Driven Super-Principal

We've been sold on an impossible dream—the dream of being the Data-Driven Super-Principal, who heroically gets everyone to improve.

Undaunted by the challenge of leading a learning community of hundreds—or even thousands—of students and educators, the Data-Driven Super-Principal personally does whatever it takes to lead improvement:

  • Reviewing assessment results to make data-driven decisions
  • Getting into classrooms to provide feedback to teachers
  • Meeting individually and with teams to make decisions

It's rewarding work...until you realize it's unsustainable—and worse, it's not enough, because schools need more leadership than administrators alone can provide.

Department Heads & Team Leaders: The Missing Layer of Leadership

As an administrator, you need a more direct connection to the realities of the teaching and learning—not by personally spending all of your time in classrooms, but by cultivating and working closely with department heads and team leaders.

Too often, these crucial leaders are reduced to little more than team note-takers, who have extra paperwork to complete and extra meetings to attend, but no real authority. 

And when team leaders don't have the authority they need to make decisions, those decisions get "delegated up" to you—creating both a bottleneck and a shortage of crucial information.

In other sectors, such as corporate, military, and nonprofit organizations, leaders typically supervise no more than 7-9 direct reports. In education—alone among professional fields—typical ratios are one administrator for every 20-40 teachers. 

We don't necessarily need more administrators in every school, but we do need more leaders—specifically, teacher leaders who are close to the work of teaching and learning. 

As a Navigator school, you'll gain crucial capacity-building professional development resources for your entire leadership team. When you activate team leaders and department heads, you'll empower them to lead in curriculum, instruction, and assessment—not to insulate you from key decisions, but to communicate and coordinate, so everyone is on the same page. 

Evidence-Driven, Not Data-Driven

For decades, we've been told that data is the key to making sound decisions. But is it?

Sure, data can be incredibly useful—but by itself, data doesn't tell us what to do. It needs to be transformed into evidence

We can have all the data in the world, but there's a reason YOU, as the school leader—and not someone in a far-removed office—are responsible for making decisions for your school: data doesn't exist in a vacuum. Context matters, and you know what's going on in your school context better than anyone. 

The problem with "data-driven decision-making" is obvious when we think about it using Bloom's Taxonomy.

When we need to do "higher-order" leadership work like analysis, synthesis, and evaluation, we can't use raw data directly. Data must first be seen in context to be transformed into evidence—and this evidence can drive our decisions.

The problem is that evidence gets overwhelming quickly. 

Data can be tabulated and averaged in a spreadsheet, but by its very nature, evidence is richer and more complex.

This richness and complexity are why evidence is so useful for making decisions—and why we must build additional capacity for instructional leadership. 

When we activate team leaders and department heads as instructional leaders, we gain the leadership bandwidth we need for communicating, coordinating, and making decisions. 

An Evidence-Driven Approach to Instructional Leadership

It's time to abandon the false dream of being a Data-Driven Super-Principal, and instead build capacity for instructional leadership with team leaders and department heads, so we can make decisions based on three key types of evidence:

  • Evidence of student learning
  • Evidence of professional practice
  • Evidence of improvement

In Navigator, The Principal Center's flagship program for building capacity for instructional leadership, you'll embark on a six-week journey to develop Team Instructional Frameworks (TIFs), in collaboration with key leaders in each grade level or department in your school.

You'll also begin the year-long shift to evidence-driven instructional leadership, by implementing the High-Performance Instructional Leadership model popularized in Dr. Justin Baeder's book Now We're Talking! 21 Days to High-Performance Instructional Leadership.

Key leaders responsible for overseeing teacher development, including administrators and instructional coaches, will transform their ability to change teacher practice through our flagship High-Performance Instructional Leadership Certification Program. 

Finally, you'll embark on a multi-year path to sustainable improvement using our evidence-driven school improvement system in the Organizational Learning Intensive. 

As a Navigator school, you'll have immediate access to all of our professional learning programs for school teams, plus our Repertoire feedback app. 

Our Evidence-Driven Leadership Programs

As a Navigator school, you'll have access to our three main programs to help your admin team:

  • Confidently get into classrooms every day
  • Have feedback conversations that change teacher practice
  • Discover their best opportunities for school improvement

One membership gives you a school-wide site license that covers all staff, including principals, assistant principals, deans, coaches, teacher leaders, and others you want to develop as instructional leaders.

Navigator membership includes the following programs:

Instructional Leadership Association

The Instructional Leadership Association helps school leaders confidently get into classrooms every day and build their capacity by following our High-Performance Instructional Leadership Roadmap for growth. We release new content each month through the Instructional Leadership Show, exclusive on-demand training videos, online courses, and our monthly ILA Playbook. 

Organizational Learning Intensive

The Organizational Learning Intensive helps school leaders discover their best opportunities for creating sustainable improvement by adopting an evidence-driven school improvement system. Once leaders master the Organizational Learning Cycle, they experience a permanent increase in their capacity to transform their schools into true learning organizations.

High-Performance Instructional Leadership Certification 

The High-Performance Instructional Leadership Certification Program builds school leaders' capacity to change teacher practice through evidence-based feedback conversations, using the shared language of their instructional framework.  Includes the Instructional Framework Development Program for developing shared expectations with staff. 

Repertoire Feedback App

Our web-based feedback app, Repertoire, is designed to help instructional leadership take evidence-rich notes during formal or informal observations, using the shared language of your instructional framework. 

Repertoire automatically saves and suggests well-crafted phrases that you use in your notes and feedback to teachers, making your writing faster, more precise, and more aligned to shared expectations. 

Direct Support for Principals Who Want To Build Capacity for Instructional Leadership

The Navigator school membership is more than just professional development for your team—it's also a resource for you as the senior leader in the organization. 

By becoming a Navigator school, you'll gain direct access to 1:1 consultation and coaching to help you build capacity for instructional leadership.

You'll work directly with Dr. Justin Baeder, Director of The Principal Center,  to craft a year-long Instructional Leadership Development Plan for leaders at all levels of your organization.

Monthly Roundtable Meetings

In addition to our world-class professional development programs for your team, and 1:1 support for your Instructional Leadership Development Plan, you'll gain access to our exclusive Roundtable meetings, where we feature our profession's leading experts and give you direct access so you can ask questions, get feedback, and gain clarity on your next steps in building capacity for instructional leadership. 

Roundtable meetings are held on Zoom video chat each month, and are recorded for members to review at any time. Recent and upcoming guests include:

  • July 2019: Doug Fisher & Nancy Frey on their PLC+ model from PLC+: Better Decisions and Greater Impact by Design
  • August 2019: Jennifer Abrams on Having Hard Conversations
  • September 2019: Anthony Muhammad on Time for Change: Four Essential Skills for Transformational School and District Leaders
  • October 2019: Jane Kise, author of Holistic Leadership, Thriving Schools on Polarity Management

The Repertoire Walkthrough Feedback App

When you become a Navigator school, you'll gain access to Repertoire for your entire admin team. Repertoire is our web-based feedback app for keeping track of informal classroom visits and providing evidence-based, framework-linked feedback to teachers, using the specific vocabulary of your organization's improvement strategies.

Repertoire empowers you to have evidence-based conversations with instructional leaders about the feedback they're providing to teachers, so you can hold administrators and coaches accountable for visiting classrooms regularly and staying close to the work of instructional improvement. 

Turn Team Instructional Frameworks Into Repertoire Templates

Team Instructional Frameworks are the cure for generic feedback. When you get into classrooms, you can use your TIFs as observation templates to structure your thinking and feedback in Repertoire. 

Rather than look for generic elements of effective practice, your TIF will enable you to give teachers feedback using the language and shared expectations THEY have articulated themselves. 

In the Instructional Framework Development Program, your teachers will discover how to create rubrics describing the "insider's view" of practice, so you can give feedback based on the specific instructional activities taking place when you observe. 

About Your Facilitator

The Navigator program is led by Justin Baeder, Director of The Principal Center. A former principal in Seattle Public Schools, he is creator of the Instructional Leadership Challenge, which has helped more than 10,000 school leaders in 50 countries around the world:

  • Confidently Get Into Classrooms Every Day
  • Have Feedback Conversations That Change Teacher Practice
  • Discover their best opportunities for school improvement

Dr. Baeder is the author of Now We're Talking! 21 Days to High-Performance Instructional Leadership (Solution Tree).

He is the host of Principal Center Radio, a weekly podcast featuring education thought leaders, and The Instructional Leadership Show, a weekly video podcast for K-12 leaders. 

Dr. Baeder holds a PhD in Educational Leadership & Policy from the University of Washington, where he studied principal productivity with a view toward helping school leaders make a habit of visiting classrooms daily. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is covered by our Navigator membership?

What if my school has multiple campuses?

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