Approach: The Leadership Platform is a summarization of the primary beliefs, attitudes, and actions of effective leaders. Articulating the Leadership Platform is important for several reasons. First, the writing of the platform compels the aspiring leader to reflect on his or her philosophy of leadership, learning, and teaching.
Second, the framework provides a structure for the knowledge, skills, and competencies within the domains of the Professional Standards for Educational Leaders (PSEL). Finally, a clearly articulated Leadership Platform conveys to others who the leader is, what the leader values and expects, and what actions will be taken to achieve the desired outcome.
From the Professional Standards for Educational Leaders (PSEL, 2015):
The Professional Standards for Educational Leaders provide guideposts so that the answers to critical questions are a resounding “Yes!” Grounded in current research and the real-life experiences of educational leaders, they articulate the leadership that our schools need and our students deserve. They are student-centric, outlining foundational principles of leadership to guide the practice of educational leaders so they can move the needle on student learning and achieve more equitable outcomes. They’re designed to ensure that educational leaders are ready to meet effectively the challenges and opportunities of the job today and in the future as education, schools and society continue to transform. (p.1)
Following are the four required PSEL Standards to be assessed in the Leadership Platform and an explanation of the critical components of each that should be addressed in the response:
PSEL 1: Mission, Vision, and Core Values. Effective educational leaders develop, advocate, and enact a shared mission, vision, and core values of high-quality education and academic success and well-being of each student.
Provide insights into basic beliefs about the purpose of education and the importance of schools to society.
Articulate and provide examples of how core values define school culture and set expectations for equity, inclusiveness, and social justice.
PSEL 2: Ethics and Professional Norms. Effective educational leaders act ethically and according to professional norms to promote each student’s academic success and well-being.
Describe and provide examples of what it means to lead with moral purpose.
Discuss and provide examples of the impact of decision-making on student-centered learning environments.
PSEL 3: Equity and Cultural Responsiveness. Effective educational leaders strive for equity of educational opportunity and culturally responsive practices to promote each student’s academic success and well-being.
Discuss the role of leadership in the preparation of students to live productively in and contribute to the diverse cultural context of a global society.
Articulate those leadership competencies, behaviors and practices that will ensure that each student has equitable access to effective teachers, learning opportunities, academic and social support, and other resources necessary for success.
PSEL 10: School Improvement. Effective educational leaders act as agents of continuous improvement to promote each student’s academic success and well-being.
Describe leadership philosophies, competencies and practices that promote coherence among improvement efforts and all aspects of school organization, programs, and services.
Discuss how school leaders manage uncertainty, risk, competing initiatives, and politics of change with courage and perseverance, providing support and encouragement, and openly communicating the need for, process for, and outcomes of improvement efforts.
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