Development of High School Department Chairs, Madison Metropolitan School District, WI

In Summer 2018, the UIC Center for Urban Education Leadership began to provide professional development to six teams of high school department chairs in Madison (WI) Metropolitan Schools. The overall aim for the past two years has been to develop department chair capacity to support teacher and teacher team learning that improves instruction and student learning in MMSD’s 5 high schools.

In year one, CUEL personnel provided monthly professional development sessions for MMSD HS department chairs in four core subject areas, and in year two, CUEL personnel have practiced a gradual release approach by coaching and supporting central office personnel in providing those monthly sessions. In both years, work has focused on: developing an effective community of professional practice among Madison HS chairs; improving HS chairs’ capacity to lead improvements in organizational capacity; improving HS chairs’ capacity to lead improvements in instructional capacity, and enhancing systems of teacher learning for improved instructional practices.