Connecticut Aspiring Leaders Academy
The purpose of this academy is to develop leaders who will provide innovative and sustained leadership to the Connecticut special education system. The UConn UCEDD was awarded funding from the Connecticut Department of Education (CSDE) Special Education Bureau to revise the Aspiring Special Education Leaders Academy curriculum developed by the Virginia Department of Education, Division of Special Education and Student Services to implement two yearlong academies in CT.
The cohort consists of teachers and administrations currently working in the CT special education system who aspire to be leaders and take on a role of Special Education Director across the state. This initiative is critical as CT has a small pool of qualified applicants due to the number of districts in the state, an aging population of current special education leadership, and a high population of students who qualify for special education under IDEA.
The participants attend weekly sessions on zoom and attend full day learning sessions in person where they hear lectures by National and State experts. Students are expected to demonstrate the competencies below by the end of the program.
Connecticut Aspiring Leaders Content Areas & Competencies
- Leading Self
Competency: After the completion of this module, you will be able to develop and implement a professional development plan to guide the acquisition of leadership goals.
- Leading Implementation of Policies, Laws, and Regulations
Competency: After the completion of this module, you will be able to develop, implement, monitor and revise (as necessary) state and local laws, regulations, policies and procedures to improve the special education system and outcomes for students with disabilities and their families.
- Leading Others
Competency: After the completion of this module, you will be able to motivate and lead stakeholders (e.g., families, school administrators, special and general education staff, board and council members, faculty, policy makers and historically underrepresented populations) to implement strategies to improve the special education system and outcomes for students and families.
- Leading Learning
Competency: After completion of this module, you will be able to establish policies and procedures to guide the adoption, implementation and evaluation of evidence-based special education practices for all special education students.
- Managing Operations and Resources
Competency: After the completion of this module, you will be able to develop or revise and implement a plan to improve the administration of the state or local special education system in compliance with federal and state requirements under IDEA.
- Leading Results
Competency: After the completion of this module, you will be able to design and implement a special education continuous improvement plan to ensure the effective use of resources to address system, school, staff, student needs and outcomes.
- Leading Change (Capstone)
Competency: After the completion of this module, you will be able to scale up, implement, evaluate, and sustain a practice(s), program, or policy with fidelity, fiscal accountability, and positive outcomes for special education students, their families, and the special education system.