AASA, University of Southern California Rossier School of Education Launch Urban Superintendents Academy

Partnership to Offer Urban Superintendent Preparation and Certification

Alexandria, Va. – May 26, 2015 In an effort to diversify and strengthen America’s field of public school administrators, AASA, The School Superintendents Association, has joined with University of Southern California’s Rossier School of Education to launch a partnership to create more pathways for underrepresented educators to become school district leaders. The national program’s goal is to prepare superintendents for the demands of the urban environment and address the reality that less than 5 percent of our nation’s superintendents are persons of color.

Today’s announcement builds on the momentum generated by AASA and Howard University, who recently announced a similar effort to offer a campus-based program for urban superintendent preparation and certification. The USC Rossier model will build on the school’s its great success in online programs, offering live synchronous and asynchronous online courses. The program will include in-person immersion sessions and mentoring by local superintendents, wherever the student is based.

The Urban Superintendents Academy draws on the unique resources from these two universities to foster more role models and educational leaders for children in school districts nationwide.

“AASA is pleased to serve as the umbrella organization for our Urban Superintendents Academy, an initiative that forges partnerships with two significant historical universities working for a common cause,” said Daniel A. Domenech, executive director, AASA. “Minority children need champions. The resources generated by USC Rossier and Howard will be invaluable as we prepare aspiring superintendents for urban environments.”

“USC Rossier’s mission to improve learning in urban education locally, nationally and globally is well served by this new partnership,” said Rossier Dean Karen Symms Gallagher. “Rossier has a long and successful history of preparing diverse superintendents for leadership roles in our most challenged K-12 districts and we are proud to join forces with AASA to extend this critical effort.”

The AASA-USC Rossier program will feature:

  • Small cohorts (20) of superintendents who will learn through an online approach;
  • Content designed specifically for the existing and emerging urban environments across the United States;
  • Mentors and program facilitators; and
  • An AASA/ USC Rossier certificate following successful completion of a capstone project.

Maria Ott, professor of clinical education, is serving as USC’s lead faculty member for the AASA/USC Rossier Urban Superintendents Academy. For more information, contact Mort Sherman, AASA superintendent-in-residence, at msherman@aasa.org or Colleen Dietz, USC program administrator, atcdietz@rossier.usc.edu. In addition, please visit the website at http://aasa.org/urbansuperintendent.aspx.


About the USC Rossier School of Education
The USC Rossier (ross-EAR) School of Education is part of the University of Southern California, one of the world’s leading private research universities. The mission of the USC Rossier School of Education is to improve learning in urban education locally, nationally and globally. Rossier leads the field in innovative, collaborative solutions to improve education outcomes. Its work is field-based, in the classroom, and online, and reflects a diversity of perspectives and experiences.

About AASA
AASA, The School Superintendents Association, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders in the United States and throughout the world. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to the highest quality public education for all children. For more information, visit www.aasa.org.


AACTE Introduces Key Resource for Assessment and Accreditation Support in 

Educator Preparation


The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) is proud to announce the AACTE Quality Support Initiative
(May 26, 2015, Washington, D.C.) – The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education (AACTE) is proud to announce the AACTE Quality Support Initiative, designed to provide resources and support to educators interested in assessment and accreditation. Starting next month, the newly developed initiative will offer Online Professional Seminars (OPSs) for faculty at AACTE member and nonmember institutions, undergraduate and graduate students, PK-12 teachers-or anyone involved in educator preparation.


As part of its mission to advocate and build capacity for high-quality educator preparation, AACTE has established the initiative to help support the profession in efforts of continuous improvement and to achieve accreditation. The OPSs enable professional development for individuals and organizational development for institutions in a convenient, flexible format.


Beginning in June, AACTE will offer the first two OPSs, Building Quality Assessments and Data Use for Improvement, at no cost to participants. Subsequent seminars will be available for a fee, with discounts for AACTE members and for large groups. In fall 2015, AACTE will roll out additional OPSs and a credentialing program to enable faculty from AACTE member institutions to become consultants. The initiative will help establish and manage a corps of credentialed consultants to provide assistance to AACTE members and will administer a credential system for certification for consultants.


“As the single accreditor in educator preparation, CAEP commends AACTE’s Quality Support Initiative for helping programs to achieve the rigorous, high standards for professional accreditation,” said Dr. Christopher A. Koch, interim president of the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).


Topics for the OPS series include the following:

  • Building Quality Assessments
  • Data Use for Improvement
  • Creating a Quality Assurance System
  • Accreditation Standards: Examples of Evidence
  • Preparing for Accreditation
  • Preparing for a Site Visit

“This initiative supports our members’ determination to use valid evidence to inform continuous improvement in program quality,” said Dr. Sharon P. Robinson, president and CEO of AACTE. “Further, we are exploiting the benefits of technology to engage more colleagues in the conversation. We developed this series of seminars in collaboration with the field to support their national or state accreditation work.”


For more information about AACTE’s Quality Support Initiative, visit www.aacte.org.




AACTE: The Leading Voice on Educator Preparation
The American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education is a national alliance of educator preparation programs dedicated to high-quality, evidence-based preparation that assures educators are ready to teach all learners on Day 1. Its over 800 member institutions represent public and private colleges and universities in every state, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and Guam. AACTE leads the field in advocacy and capacity building by promoting innovation and effective practices as critical to reforming educator preparation. For more information, visit www.aacte.org.