Oklahoma Department of Education announces $8 million school leadership, talent development initiative

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OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. (KNWA/KFTA) — The Oklahoma State Department of Education announced September 8 it is using approximately $8 million in federal relief to strengthen school leadership and teacher retention in the state.

According to a news release from the department, the three-year initiative starts this school year and includes five specialized programs.

“The research is clear and compelling: Within schools, teachers have the greatest impact on students and their futures, with building leaders coming in a close second,” said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister. “Using a portion of our coronavirus relief funds to strengthen and stabilize our leadership and talent pipelines is critical as we continue to navigate the pandemic landscape and remain true to our commitments to do everything possible to ensure student success.”

The release says the School Leadership and Talent Development initiative includes the following programs:

  • Moving UP — supporting assistant principals with a focus on collaborative leadership
  • Principal Induction Academy — providing training to early-career principals in instructional coaching, school climate, professional learning communities, and personnel and resource management
  • First Class — providing virtual coaching and mentoring for new teachers
  • Data Institute — utilizing data to build effective schools and improve student achievement

The release says the final program, a grant to the Oklahoma Chapter of Teach for America to combat the teacher shortage, was announced in August.

The OSDE has conducted five Moving UP programs since 2016, according to the release. The new investment will fund three additional trainings for 120 assistant principals through the 2023-24 school year.

Applications for Moving UP and the Principal Induction Academy are open through Friday, September 10.

The release says the Data Institute is at capacity and will take place at the Francis Tuttle Technology Center Reno Campus in Oklahoma City on September 23-24.

The First Class program is underway for the 2020-21 school year, with 250 new teachers participating, according to the release.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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