California Department of Education
Taking Center Stage – Act II

Set the vision

Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” Effective school leaders ignite their professional learning community with a vision that focuses all resources, discussions, and data analysis on student learning. Although a leadership team may help write the vision, the superintendent is the person who continues to mobilize the community around that vision.

Research on youth development supports the importance of a vision that all students can achieve and meet standards—a high-expectations-plus-support message.1 As keepers of the vision, local governing board members and the superintendent help district staff members, school personnel, and community representatives focus each discussion on the vision: will this decision help us to close the achievement gap in our middle grades and raise the achievement of all students?

School District Superintendents

Keep a focus on accountability

1 Resilience and Youth Development Module Handbook. Prepared by WestEd and the Safe and Healthy Kids Program Office. Sacramento: California Department of Education, 2002, 9.