The College of Education developed the new MA degree in Instructional Leadership (MAIL) in partnership with five school districts in the northwest Chicago suburbs: Arlington Heights School District 25; Community Consolidated School District 15 in Palatine; Community Consolidated School District 21 in Wheeling; Township High School District 211 in Palatine; and Township High School District 214 in Arlington Heights. The partnership was catalyzed at a December 2013 meeting of the Northwest Personnel Administrators. At this meeting, the attendees shared their concerns about principal and teacher leader preparation and the need for a new approach attentive to the needs of northwest Chicago suburban school districts. Thereafter, a working group of school and university representatives was formed to collaboratively design, implement, and administer the new MA degree in Instructional Leadership.
The proposed MA Program will provide licensed teachers with the option of enrolling in either a Principal Endorsement Concentration (PEC) and a Teacher Leader Concentration (TLC). Successful completion of the PEC will earn candidates the MA Degree in Instructional Leadership and the State of Illinois Principal Endorsement on their Professional Educator Licenses. Completion of the TLC will earn candidates the State of Illinois Teacher Leader Endorsement on their Professional Educator Licenses, with an option of earning the MA degree with the completion of two additional courses. All courses will be offered near the Schaumburg Campus of Roosevelt University, and will be priced at $350 per credit hour, or $1,050 per 3 credit hour course.
According to the Illinois Principals Association, there are approximately 400 principal openings every year in Illinois, and the current production of principal candidates is not sufficient to meet the need. The State of Illinois expects that the need for teacher leaders will increase over the next ten years.
A subsidiary partnership with the national non-profit organization Kids At Hope (KAH) is a distinctive feature of the new MA degree in Instructional Leadership. KAH works with schools and other community-based agencies to implement strategies that strengthen the belief that “all children are capable of success, No Exceptions.” KAH has had documented success in transforming learning outcomes at many schools and districts across the nation; consequently, KAH research findings, principles, and practices have been integrated into two core courses in the program, with the result that all RU principal and teacher leader candidates will earn a Train The Trainer Certificate from Kids At Hope.
To earn admission to the MAIL Program, all candidates will need to have at least two years of teaching experience. In addition, they will need to submit two letters of recommendation and a personal essay, as well as obtain approval from the Partnership Steering Committee. All applicants for the Principal Endorsement Concentration also will need to submit a portfolio, sit for an interview, and successfully complete a written response to a leadership scenario.
More information about the proposed MA Program in Instructional Leadership can be obtained from Dr. Roger Chamberlain, Program Coordinator. Contact Dr. Chamberlain at firstname.lastname@example.org or 847-619-8832.