The annual Administrative Leadership Institute (ALI) concluded Thursday at the Thomas G. Hildebrand, DVM ‘56 Equine Complex. Dozens of educators from regions across Texas gathered to exchange ideas, strategies, and effective methods aimed at improving student success within their districts.
This year, the College of Education and Human Development partnered with the Texas Association of School Administrators and the School Research Nexus. ALI also featured a number of guest speakers across the education and marketing sectors including Cypress-Fairbanks ISD, Spring ISD, The Flippen Group, and Overflow Communications. This year’s theme was Keys to Great Leadership.
“Education has changed dramatically over the years due to different forms of media,” said Clinical Associate Professor Dr. Robert Muller. “Because there are so many ways that information can be posted and sent out to the world, it is really important for school administrators to have the leadership tools to address the concerns of their students, parents, and communities.”
Wednesday morning opened with introductions from Dr. Muller, TASA Associate Executive Director Dr. Brandon Core, and SRN Executive Director Dr. Don Hooper. Following their talks, Overflow Communications CEO Andrew Barlow led an in-depth session about coping with live and social media in the digital age. Overflow Communications provides support to organizations seeking to maximize media communication effectiveness will lead attendees through a number of media best practices.
The ALI Awards dinner topped off Wednesday night. CEHD Dean Dr. Joyce Alexander opened the award dinner with a speech about changing the narrative of K-12 schools by celebrating student achievements and also being open to always improving the process when needed. We have all the ammunition we need to weave the narrative, said Dean Alexander.
"We see lives being changed daily," she said. "Everyone has something important to bring to the table and [that] dialogue sets the stage for transparency in the process."
Award winners included Thomas Ratliff, of Mount Pleasant, who was awarded the Golden Deeds for Education Award.
Ratliff earned his bachelor’s in Business from Texas Tech University in 1989, and his master’s in Public Affairs from the University of Texas at Austin in 1994. He is the Vice Chair of the State Board of Education. He was elected to the Board in 2010 and re-elected in 2012. He currently serves on the Board’s Committee on School Finance/Permanent School Fund.
The Hoyle Award in Educational Leadership was awarded to Dr. Angi Williams, of Galena Park ISD. During her 37-year career in education, Dr. Williams has held many titles including principal and Assistant Superintendent for School/Community Relations. The award recognizes her lifelong dedication to education and service to students.
The Thomas Poe Regional Service Center Leadership Award was awarded to Dr. Tom Norris. With over 30 years of educational experience, Dr. Norris currently serves as an education consultant for the Region 12 Superintendent Certification Program fowling his retirement as the Executive Director of ESC Region 12.
The T.M. Stinnett Academic Fellowship Award was awarded to Elisabeth Luevanos. Luevanos is a current EAHR graduate assistant on an inclusion study through a grant funded by the Kellogg Foundation.
The Paul R. Hensarling Distinguished Graduate Student Award was awarded to Jeff McCanna of Houston. McCanna is in his 25th year in education and currently serves as Officer of Human Capital for Houston ISD.
On Thursday, Spring ISD Superintendent Dr. Rodney Watson opened by presenting information on his district’s successful Urban Internship Project. The project helps in ensuring that beginning teachers are knowledgeable and well equipped in teaching students in urban areas. Dr. Ray Perryman later spoke about Economics and Texas Schools — highlighting the effects of the state’s changing economy and how school administrators should move forward.
Afterward, Dr. Chris White, Chief Science Officer of the Flippen Group, presented 19 avoidable conflict mistakes for educators. The enthusiastic session focused on tactful ways educators could lead their districts to success. Dr. Frances Devine of the Center for Public Policy Priorities ended the afternoon with her presentation on student equity. Specific geographical data was provided to attendees.