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RCC Workforce sponsors leadership forum

On April 26, the Regional Educational Consortium (a program of Rappahannock Community College’s Workforce and Community Development Center) sponsored the college’s first-ever 21st-Century School Leadership Forum. The event was attended by more than 50 administrators from the 14 public school divisions in RCC’s 12-county service area.

Speaking at the Forum were Dr. Daniel Duke, a professor of educational leadership from the University of Virginia, and Dr. Eileen Reed, an educational strategist and the former deputy executive director for Texas Education Service Center. They covered these school improvement topics: the leadership and planning skills needed for process optimization; why school improvement planning can have disappointing outcomes; how to achieve results through positive influence rather than exerted authority; and the responsibilities of the centralized office in maintaining accountability and improvement efforts.

Most participants said that they planned to use the information they had gained to help their divisions or schools develop more effective strategic plans, while some hoped to foster next-level training for all administrators. Several expressed appreciation for the planning tools that were presented, and announced intentions of changing their own leadership practices in order to help students reach a higher level of achievement. One attendee, Jane Geyer from Westmoreland County, said that due to this training, “my influencing skills will be sharpened, and hopefully that will benefit all my students. I will change and add some of the ideas I learned here.”

Workforce and Community Development Center training coordinator Harriet Dawson called the Forum “a wonderful first step in establishing a 21st-century leadership vocabulary for area administrators.” She went on to state, “We have amazing leadership potential in our service area, which was enhanced by the networking opportunities fostered by this Forum. Having the opportunity to learn from two nationally-recognized educational leaders, and to take back some of their ideas into our schools, will ultimately result in more effective and successful programs for our students.”

For more information about the Regional Educational Consortium and its programs, please call Harriet Dawson at 804-758-6755.

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