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Program Overview

Chicago Fellows of the Center for Transformational Educational Leadership participate in a two-year professional development program that includes the following components detailed below:

Summer Institute

All fellows will participate in an intensive weeklong institute at the University of Notre Dame over successive summers in which leaders will engage in outstanding professional development built around best practices found in the highest performing schools in the country. In addition, the leaders will also have manifold opportunities to renew and strengthen their faith by participating in the powerful prayer and Eucharistic celebrations foundational for all ACE programs throughout the summer.

2021 Chicago Fellow Summer Institute Dates: Sunday, June 13 through Friday, June 18, 2021

2021 Cabrini Fellow Summer Institute Dates: Thursday, July 22 through Saturday, July 24, 2021

Weekly Executive Coaching

Each leader will receive weekly one-to-one executive coaching focused on their leadership goals. Because of this job-embedded design, the executive coaching provides authentic, timely support for each leader’s priority leadership tasks, while providing clear, ongoing feedback on the leader’s growth in high-leverage leadership competencies. In addition to focusing on customized leadership goals, executive coaches will drive the leader to execute implementation of best practices found in the highest quality schools in the country. These coaches will also continue to instill in the leaders a growth mindset fixated on excellence in the name of Christ.

Road Maps for School Transformation

The Center staff has a wealth of experience in turning around and creating phenomenal faith-based urban schools. Our staff has used that experience to develop road maps for school transformation. These road maps will serve as a guide for leaders to lead their schools to new levels of excellence in academics, school culture, and student spiritual formation. As the initial set of fellows begin to create transformational school environments, this will begin the movement of a renewed focus for Catholic schools as we compete with and surpass our charter and district colleagues in terms of school quality. All of this done to advance the cause for Christ and his church.

Monthly Collaboration & Local High Quality School Field Trips

CTELKids3To support the development of a strong local cohort, the executive coaches will facilitate monthly training workshops, bringing together all of the leaders in the community to pray, reflect, share ideas, provide support, and disseminate best practices. Additionally, executive coaches will facilitate field trips to high-performing schools for the individual leader and a member of their leadership team. The guided, monthly visits to highly effective schools will serve as introductions to workshops on high-leverage leadership concepts and skills, exposing the leaders to exemplary schools and best practices.

Retreats at Key Junctures in the Program

To foster spiritual growth and nurture a professional learning community of Catholic school leaders who can build vibrant faith communities in their schools, fellows will participate in five retreats: one each at the beginning and end of the two-year program, again at the beginning of the second summer institute, and once during the middle of each academic year. 

“Best in Country” Immersion Experiences

CTELKids2Two to three times per year, fellows will travel together to various cities across the country to observe and deeply immerse themselves in some of the highest quality schools in the country. These two-day experiences will be facilitated by Center faculty, as the leaders will observe what makes these schools work and how best to take learnings back to individual school contexts. The faculty will conduct deep analysis through joint school observations with the leaders and facilitate professional development workshops focused on implementation and execution of best practices gleaned from these observations. These immersion experiences are critical in helping our highest potential leaders develop a grander vision for what is possible.

Ongoing Support

After the leaders complete the program, executive coaches will continue to provide support and to maintain strong relationships with the leaders over time. The leaders will have the option to participate in ongoing executive coaching in third and fourth years to assist them in meeting transformational leadership goals.

If you have additional questions or want to receive more information about the Center for Transformational Educational Leadership, please contact:

Greg O’Donnell
Associate Director, ACE Leadership Programs