Building Leadership Capacity

At CEL, our mantra is: “You can’t lead what you don’t know.” Educational leaders must understand what good teaching is before they can foster best practices in classrooms and eliminate educational inequities. That’s one of our primary jobs at CEL:  to help school system leaders, principals, coaches and teacher leaders develop the vision, the language and the tools to observe, analyze and lead for powerful learning experiences in every classroom.

Eliminating Educational Inequities

Equity is at the core of our mission, vision and services at the Center for Educational Leadership. For decades, too many school experiences have produced disparate learning outcomes for students of color and students furthest from opportunity. We believe that these inequities can be eliminated when all students have:

  • Full access to quality learning experiences and powerful instruction daily.
  • Grade-level instruction on curriculum that is aligned to high academic standards.
  • Learning experiences that connect to their identities, their cultures, and their personal experiences.
  • Engagement with rigorous, meaningful content and intellectual work that is authentic and builds capacity to think critically, use knowledge to create knew knowledge and apply learning to real-world problems.
  • School and classroom learning environments, as well as relationships, that foster a sense of belonging and safety to take risks.

CEL focuses on the leadership that is needed to design schools and school systems that transform student learning. We use research-based frameworks, tools and processes as we partner with leaders at all levels of the educational system to create cultures of rigorous teaching, learning and leading that further our goal of eliminating educational inequities. 

Our Track Record

CEL has commissioned research through the UW Center for the Study of Teaching and Policy to analyze the impact of CEL’s professional development work with school districts.  As a result of these studies, we have learned that:

Principals and district coaches improve in their ability to analyze instruction and provide specific and meaningful feedback to teachers

Teacher practice improves when administrators and coaches support and model quality instruction

Student learning increases when schools and districts have focused and intentionally developed instructional leadership.

Learn more about CEL’s research briefs

Case Studies