The Holdsworth Center selects six Texas school districts for second cohort of 5-year partnership
(AUSTIN, TX) – The Holdsworth Center, a leadership institute founded by H-E-B CEO and Chairman Charles Butt, has selected six school districts for the second cohort of a 5-year partnership focused upon helping public school districts grow their pipeline of inspiring leaders so that teachers thrive and students excel on every campus.
The six districts are Mesquite ISD (Dallas-Fort Worth), Aldine ISD and Spring ISD (Houston area), Harlingen CISD (Rio Grande Valley), Judson ISD (San Antonio) and Lockhart ISD (Central Texas).
With the announcement of these six districts, the Holdsworth Partnership now extends to two cohorts comprising 13 public school districts. By the end of their five-year partnership, more than 1,400 educational leaders across 277 schools in Texas will have been impacted.
Holdsworth staff selected the six districts based upon willingness and ability to change, as well as level of commitment to growing and developing a pipeline of leaders. To ensure a diverse cohort, staff also considered each district’s student population and geographic location.
Any Texas public school district with a student population of 6,000 or more was eligible to apply through a written application, which was followed by in-depth site visits to 14 finalist districts earlier this year. The other eight district finalists were: Abilene ISD, Brazosport ISD (Gulf Coast), Brownsville ISD, Midland ISD, North East ISD (San Antonio), San Angelo ISD, San Antonio ISD and Waco ISD. Holdsworth is actively exploring ways to best partner with small and rural districts educating less than 6,000 students.
“We look forward to investing in and supporting district and campus leaders in these six systems as they work to grow as leaders, strengthen schools and districts and drive excellent and equitable results for every student,” said Dr. Lindsay Whorton, president of The Holdsworth Center. “We are grateful to every district who applied. Selecting only six districts was extremely difficult, and through our visits we were inspired by and optimistic about the excellent work being done in schools across Texas.”
The Holdsworth Partnership is centered on two core investments in leadership at the district and campus levels.
This summer, the superintendent and a team of five other leaders from central office will embark on the two-year District Leadership Program, a learning journey that includes sessions with some of the nation’s top leadership experts and site visits to study high-performing organizations in the U.S. and abroad. Over the five-year partnership, District Leaders work together to build and implement robust talent management systems with help from embedded Holdsworth staff who provide support tailored to the unique needs of each district.
In the second year, principal supervisors, principals, assistant principals and teachers begin the 2-year Campus Leadership Program, a learning journey similar to District Leaders. Each campus team works on a significant challenge tied to school culture and student outcomes. Rolled out in phases, the program aims to serve 50 percent of campuses in each partner district.
Apart from in-state transportation costs, all programming and support are covered by The Holdsworth Center. In 2020, learning sessions will move to The Holdsworth Center’s new campus on the shores of Lake Austin, a peaceful setting where educators can focus on learning and reflection.
The announcement of the second cohort comes shortly after 42 District Leaders graduated from Holdsworth’s inaugural District Leadership Program. The first cohort includes Lamar CISD and Klein ISD (Houston area), Southwest ISD (San Antonio), Round Rock ISD (Central Texas), Pharr-San Juan-Alamo ISD (Rio Grande Valley), and Grand Prairie ISD and Arlington ISD (Dallas-Fort Worth).
“Holdsworth has impacted our district inside and out,” said Dr. Joffery Jones, executive director of campus safety and support at Klein ISD. “We've employed programs and change that will forever be with the district. I tell people all the time that Holdsworth is different. You can't participate in this program and not grow as a professional.”
The Holdsworth Center
Founded by Charles Butt in January 2017, The Holdsworth Center partners with Texas public school districts to cultivate a pipeline of dynamic and inspired leaders so that teachers thrive and students excel in every classroom. The Center makes a deep investment in participating districts, working with each for a five-year period and including both district and campus leaders throughout partnership. For more information, visit www.holdsworthcenter.org.