IL, OH, MO, IA - New Leadership


A new, post-crisis world requires a new kind of leader. Superintendents like Dr. Victor Simon from Gower School District 62 in Illinois exemplifies the kind of new leadership thinking that is working well in education’s “I survived COVID and all I got was this damn shirt” world. According to Dr. Simon, “In DuPage county, here in Illinois, we were open all of last school year. It was a challenge and new things have happened. Certainly, we were one of the first in the state to do e-learning, in replacement for what we would call a traditional snow day or an emergency day, that feels kind of like old news now, but we were the first to officially do that by policy here in the state and now have adopted a full-on remote educational program for those families. When we talk about individualization for students, it might work better for them. So, we want to make sure that that's been memorialized as we come out of crises and get back to what we want to call a new normal, what things have changed. What the conversation has been about here, for us over the last couple of years and reminding everybody what leadership is required to do the things that we want to do to bring about the changes that we want to bring.

“Our plates are full, collectively speaking here, but generally we're at that stage now and if we haven't started to put some of that into place months ago, I worry that you could be at risk of falling behind now. And that means we have the opportunity to emerge stronger. It's not business as usual. And then when we talk about leveraging technology here, this comes from that lessons document that our state has given to administrators. I think it was pretty forward thinking, but this quote from Maxwell here about change being inevitable and growth being optional also rings true in today's day. When we're starting to think about the work that could have been done, the work that maybe should have been done, we're starting to see maybe the deck be clear, just a bit for us to hold organizations to account in the sense of have we taken those steps to build what we want to call the new normal.

“So you know, if schools look different, they should, and we do want to keep that perspective in mind.”

You’ll enjoy some new thinking from Dr. Simon, a superintendent that mixes parts wisdom, innovation and more than a little common sense to get the kind of results his district needs. It’s new leadership, and you’re welcome to borrow the wisdom, innovation and especially the common sense for your own school or district.


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