Vision of a DSLTI Graduate

DSLTI articulates its vision of a successful graduate in the following six areas of competency, and ties every element of the program to building skill and knowledge in these areas.

Each competency is followed by a developmental list of ways that educational leaders can show evidence of their mastery in this area: the first bullet indicates a beginner’s level of mastery, and the last bullet indicates a highly developed level of mastery.

1. A DSLTI graduate can articulate a personal vision of Jewish educational leadership and lead with it in mind.

  • Can explain the importance of vision in Jewish educational leadership
  • Can infer elements of vision from school materials
  • Can identify discrete values and principles that contribute to his/her own Jewish educational vision
  • Uses ongoing Jewish learning to inform and enrich his/her own Jewish educational vision
  • Can articulate a coherent and compelling vision statement
  • Can lead others in articulating their own personal vision statements, as well as in developing a common schoolwide vision statement
  • Habitually frames his/her personal educational vision in terms of Jewish values
  • Habitually uses his/her personal vision of Jewish education in all aspects of leadership
2. A DSLTI graduate demonstrates understanding of the central issues of Jewish day schools and of numerous alternative solutions to problems, and leads using theory and best practices.
  • Can restate in his/her own language central issues in education—and identify those that are unique to Jewish day schools and those that are found in independent and public schools—in the following areas of leadership challenge: curriculum, teaching, and learning; board development; school organization (collaboration, communication, day-to-day); Jewish life; budget and finance; institutional advancement; constituent relations; school culture; and external affairs
  • Can cite appropriate literature that discusses central issues in Jewish day schools
  • For each central issue, can articulate at least two alternative solutions and can identify theoretical and practical differences between them
  • For selected issues, can describe a model intervention based on his/her own preferred solution (case studies)
  • For selected focus of individual project, can develop a comprehensive analysis, intervention, and evaluation of a central issue in Jewish day schools
  • Routinely draws on theory and best practices in leading his/her school
3. A DSLTI graduate promotes and reinforces a collaborative and collegial school culture in which students, teachers, and parents are heard and valued.
  • Exhibits openness, respect, humility, and sensitivity
  • Actively listens to and communicates with all students, teachers, and parents
  • Respects and affirms diverse ways of reaching common goals
  • Nurtures schoolwide commitment to shared values and assumes responsibility for achieving the school's mission
  • Promotes the shared use of the language of Jewish values among all constituents in discussions of school issues
  • Promotes shared inquiry into Jewish texts as a "signature pedagogy" (i.e., a distinctive and pervasive teaching method) for fostering collaboration
  • Leads a school in which there is evidence of a collaborative and collegial school culture, such as a sense of common purpose, frequent conversations about teaching and learning—instructors learning from one another about teaching and learning, and helping each other solve problems in these areas—and teachers working together to develop and evaluate instructional materials
4. A DSLTI graduate works with lay leaders to achieve a school's mission.
  • Can identify and distinguish between areas of board responsibility and staff responsibility
  • Brings appropriate matters and data to board's attention
  • Cultivates a close and trusting relationship with board president
  • Serves as chief communicator between board and staff
  • Trains board to appreciate the centrality of teaching and learning in the school's mission and the board's work
  • Frames personal commitment to working with lay leaders in terms of Jewish moral and communal values
  • Effectively leverages lay leadership to advance the school's mission
5. A DSLTI graduate leads with self-reflection, Jewish ethics, and morality.
  • Can restate in his/her own language influential theories of educational leadership, and identify behaviors that reflect particular leadership styles and/or traits
  • Can cite appropriate Jewish sources and articulate appropriate Jewish value concepts and general moral statements that support or call into question particular leadership options and decisions
  • Can critique plans of action and descriptions of interventions using leadership theory
  • Accurately describes his/her personal leadership styles and traits, and can articulate strengths, opportunities, and challenges that relate to each
  • In problem solving and action planning, consciously evaluates alternatives in terms of elements of leadership theory and his/her personal leadership style
  • Explicitly models self-reflection, Jewish ethics, and morality in decisions large and small
6. A DSLTI graduate is committed to continuous improvement and perpetual learning.
  • Exhibits openness to honest discussion of personal strengths and weaknesses
  • Uses insights into and feedback about personal strengths and weaknesses to develop an Individual Education Plan (360º Evaluation)
  • Seeks out learning opportunities that go beyond program expectations, including supplemental readings, setting aside time for Torah study, reflective writing, wide consultation with staff and colleagues, efforts to apply learning to his/her own school
  • Establishes annual professional development goals based on an analysis of institutional needs, including teaching and learning process and outcomes, as well as personal needs and/or interests, and holds him-/herself accountable to them
  • Uses ongoing Jewish learning to inform and enrich leadership