Leyden superintendent completes leadership program

Leyden High School District 212 Superintendent Nick Polyak accepts his graduation certificate as a participant in the Illinois School for Advanced Leadership from Illinois Association of School Administrators Executive Director Brent Clark. | Provided
Leyden High School District 212 Superintendent Nick Polyak accepts his graduation certificate as a participant in the Illinois School for Advanced Leadership from Illinois Association of School Administrators Executive Director Brent Clark. | Provided

Leyden High School District 212 Superintendent Nick Polyak is among 19 superintendents who completed the Illinois School for Advanced Leadership cohort this June. The two-year program encourages participants to train, learn, and discover new paths to excellence in educatio

Polyak just completed his first year as Leyden’s superintendent after four years at the helm of Illinois Valley Central School District 321, a kindergarten through high school district near Peoria.

Illinois School for Advanced Leadership was developed and is sponsored by the Illinois Association of School Administrators, the statewide organization that represents public school superintendents and administrators. The goal is to create a new level of leadership in public education.

The two-year program includes developing a personal professional growth plan, as well as developing a district plan for student achievement that encompasses conducting a comprehensive needs assessment. Each of the particitants was assigned a veteran superintendent as a coach. The proram also studied the superintendent’s role through five leadership lenses including facilitator of shared moral purpose, a change agent, relationship and culture promoter, capacity builder, and coherence maker.

“Given all of the challenges facing superintendents and public education in Illinois, we thought it was important to provide a unique opportunity through rigorous curriculum, training and experiences for those men and women who were willing to push themselves beyond what is expected of a superintendent,” said Illinois Association of School Administrators Executive Director Brent Clark. “Everyone talks about return on investment, and in this case it will be making a difference in public education.”

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