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What Happens When School Leadership Combines with Best Practices
Anson Jackson committed to teaching middle school math in the Rio Grande Valley for two years after college because he was inspired to do something admirable. But he quickly realized that education didn’t just change lives, it had the ability “to change society for the better.”
In 2014, 10 years later, Anson is the principal of Uplift Mighty Preparatory, a tuition-free middle school in the Uplift Education public charter network of North Texas whose mission is to ensure 100 percent of its students become college-ready. Seventy-five percent of Uplift students are Hispanic, 25 percent are African American, and 90 percent are low-income. “All children deserve a great education,” Anson said. “I want every child to be provided with the opportunity to gain the skills and knowledge necessary to be successful in college and the world, regardless of the zip code that they live in, their background, or ethnicity.”
When Anson and his staff wanted to increase student achievement, they turned to Middle School Matters, a Bush Institute education program focused on working with middle school teachers to implement research-based practices. Through the support of the program, the school is starting to see gains in student achievement, with scores increasing across all grades in reading and writing over last year.
Anson and Uplift Mighty Preparatory are an example of what’s possible when research and best practices combine with school leadership who expect their students to succeed and work hard to make it happen. As Anson explained, “Students will shoot for the stars, if they know someone believes in them.”
Two-Minute Take: Happy School Principals' Day!
"At the George W. Bush Institute, we believe that principals are essential to student success. They set a positive school culture for the kids and adults in the building, and they bring a rigorous focus on instruction and academics so that all kids can succeed."
School Leadership Initiative Meets in Chesterfield
The School Leadership Initiative team and the four participating districts met in Chesterfield to discuss effectively implementing a comprehensive principal talent management (PTM) framework.
Assessing Your Principal Performance Evaluation System
The George W. Bush Institute is releasing a series of guidebooks focused on Principal Talent Management (PTM) practices that districts can leverage to support school leadership.