What School Improvement Leaders are Saying About Their Experience in the LAUNCH!™ Program

Pennsylvania Department of Education chose LAUNCH!™ to train School Improvement Facilitators serving TSI and CSI schools across the Keystone State. 

“Being a part of LAUNCH!™  has helped to reinvigorate the work that I do as a school improvement specialist.  The conversations are thought- provoking and build upon coaching training that I’ve completed in the past.  The tools and resources that are provided can be used immediately, no matter what stage of school improvement you are in.  The course, in tandem with the Field Guide, walks through practical scenarios that improvement specialists will encounter from deciding what to wear on your first day meeting the school team through the challenging conversations about relationships, influencers, hiring and evaluation, professional learning, and more. The course has helped me to slow down and be extremely thoughtful about the tools that I use, the conversations that I have, and the plans that I make to move forward in supporting schools to achieve their vision.” – School Improvement Facilitator in PA


Deb Page and Dr. Jean Quigg hosted Cohort 4 of Georgia DOE and RESA School Improvement Staff. Look below to read all about the experience!

Which portions of the session were most useful? Why?

“The time permitted to complete the tasks, along with time to work through the Worksheets.”
“Wow! I don’t know where to begin! Loved the Improvement project work plan, because it gives direction to the plan of action.”
“The portion that stood out to me was the Project Improvement Plan and the Project Work Plan. It helped to clarify the similarities/differences.”
“The Commitment Agreement and Feasibility Worksheet were useful as well as the Assessment of factors impacting success.”
“ Time to work in Promote, especially with teacher leaders answering questions at the table.”
“Work time on assignments. I was able to collaborate AND get feedback immediately!”
“Love the focus of Building Capacity!! Good Action Plan form.”
“I found all the portions provided affirmation and useful information to support School Effectiveness Actions.”
“Small group discussions continue to offer excellent insight and ideas!”
“I believe all of the activities and resources shared today were valuable. I think going through the tools and discussion helped clarify my understanding so I can use them effectively”
“The whole day was valuable. My favorite part was around Project Management because it is my weakness”

Which portions of the session could have been more useful?
“A little more time to complete tasks – however this experience was excellent!”
“Great Session! Nothing at all!”
“All was well done!”
“Nothing, great as-is!”
“GREAT work day!”

How does this session compare with other professional development you or your team(s) experienced?
“The session is much better than other development programs I have attended”
“The information was well- designed and usable.”
“The opportunity to interact with others”
“Very intensive, it was tightly tied to my work.”
“Fits well into a new focus for me”
“One of the best I’ve had in my entire career!”
“This session allows you an opportunity to fully understand the work presented.”
“This session is more organized and relevant than most Professional Development.”
“Continues to be to superior!”
“Quality tools and time with peers.”
“Hearing the experience of our fellow colleagues.”
“Great tools for my toolbox of School Improvement.”
“The training provides a process and tools, we tell development coaches they should facilitate, this training shows them how.”

“The guidance given to me during LAUNCH!™ has connected the dots for me for implementation of a long term plan for a system of continuous improvement for any organization from initial evaluation to a fully functioning self-improvement model. This has been a truly insightful experience.”

“I like the virtual professional learning.  The presenters were very knowledgeable and engaging.” 

“The LAUNCH!™ professional development is more rigorous and strongly aligns with the work of a school improvement specialist. LAUNCH!™ has had a greater impact on my work than other professional learning experiences.”

“The work that Deb Page and Dr. Jean Quigg at the Institute for Performance Improvement is doing in high poverty rural districts is beneficial in many ways.  Connecting school leaders with other leaders focusing on the same student needs will help us grow and learn from one another.  Deb has already given us a better perspective about the workforce needs of our region and districts experiencing similar challenges.”

– Michele Taylor, Ed. D, Superintendent, Calhoun City Schools

LAUNCH!™  provided opportunities for students in a rural, poverty District by providing stronger, trained Leaders who can make strategic decisions in their schools. Those strategic decisions are what brings equity to the forefront, which is vital to these students. So critical are these leader decisions that I consider them to be as vital for student success as the water I require to live!”

Dr. Donna Hinton, Senior Consultant and Performance Coach

“The guidance given to me during LAUNCH!™ has connected the dots for me for implementation of a long term plan for a system of continuous improvement for any organization from initial evaluation to a fully functioning self-improvement model. This has been a truly insightful experience.”

Tim Huddleston, Education Recovery Leader, Kentucky Department of Education, Cohort 3

The information gathered through the Institute sessions are really helping me think critically about how I can be an effective facilitator in my field of work. Hearing others’ experiences and input truly helps me to better understand the CSIS standards and how I can relate to each professionally and personally.

J’ Nora Anderson, Novice Reduction Coach, Kentucky Department of Education Cohort 3

Being a part of the LAUNCH!™ training has shown me the importance of building the capacity within others with whom I work to see what changes need to be made and to arrive at their own effective solutions. When they have the capacity to see the problems for themselves and devise their own effective plans to solve them, they are closer to being on the path of self-sustained improvement.

Keith Embry, Education Recovery Leader, Kentucky Cohort 3

LAUNCH!™ taught me how to build consensus, determine responsibility and accountability, and increase my circle of influence

– David RaleighCSIS, Education Recovery Leader, Kentucky Department of Education

LAUNCH!™ was able to guide me to facilitate the school improvement process through case studies, guided support and practice using the data from the schools I serve. My learning and practice helped me transition from school administrator to effective school improvement consultant.

– Danny OsborneCSIS, Education Recovery Leader, Kentucky Department of Education

As School Improvement Grant (SIG) Coordinator for the Bibb County School District, it is my responsibility to oversee, monitor, and evaluate the implementation of the fiscal and programmatic aspects of SIG. The Certified School Improvement Specialist™ (CSIS) standards align with the work for SIG. I am using the tools I gained from LAUNCH!™  with SIG schools to strengthen the process of school improvement.

– Sharon CampbellSchool Improvement Grant Coordinator, Bibb County School District, Georgia

LAUNCH!™ training has provided CSD participants with a collegial and risk-free environment in which they can reflect upon their past and current practices with their peers. This experience has allowed CSD leaders to pool their collective expertise into the creation of a highly functional learning community in which creative problem solving is valued.

In addition, we learned that as we enter new roles and positions the way in which we work must evolve.  This training helped us to understand that a building leader, central office leader and independent consultant must tackle   a school improvement task differently. Jean and Deb helped us to understand the difference between being a facilitator of school improvement vs a line administrator charged with the task of school improvement. The facilitation protocols and tools can easily be adapted for almost any situation.

Joe AustinDirector of Accountability and Assessment, City Schools of Decatur, Georgia