The SIS Network supports social learning and networking for school improvement facilitators nationwide. Through our partnership with the International Society for Performance Improvement, the SIS Network also provides a professional association, a home for school improvement practitioners to learn and collaborate.


SIS: A New Profession

The School Improvement Specialist is a relatively new role in K-12 education which has evolved from the advent of education accountability. The role is performed by professionals assigned by state education agencies to assist schools in improving educator and student performance; regional education agencies which provide support to school districts and schools; school district leaders and staff assigned to support school improvement, and school leaders, including Academic Coaches and other teacher leaders.

What is a “Profession”?

A role is recognized as a profession when the following have developed, typically through a professional association or other entity that:

  • Maintains Standards of Practice.
  • Maintains a Code of Ethics.
  • Provides continuing education.
  • Provides professional certifications and designations
  • Provides a membership in a professional home/association that supports and advances the role.
  • Speaks with a unified voice for the role.

Does the SIS Profession Meet Those Requirements?

Standards of Practice

The School Improvement Specialist role has standards of practice, the Certified School Improvement Specialist™ Standards developed by Dr. Judith Hale, Senior Consultant and co-founder of the Institute for Performance Improvement in 2010.

The CSIS™ standards are:

  • Analyze and Apply Critical Judgement
  • Facilitate Deriving Meaning and Engagement
  • Focus on Systemic Factors
  • Plan and Record
  • Organize and Manage Effort and Resources
  • Guide and Focus Collaborative Improvement
  • Build Capacity
  • Demonstrate Organizational Sensitivity
  • Monitor Accountability and Adoption
  • Implement for Sustainability

Code of Ethics      

The School Improvement Specialist Code of Ethics is part of the Certified School Improvement Specialist™ Application process. Applicants attest to adherence to the code of ethics in their performance and demonstration of their proficiency in the CSIS™ standards.

Continuing Education

The Institute for Performance Improvement provides continuing education for school improvement practitioners.

The LAUNCH!™ Learning and Development Experience is designed for state, local and regional education agency staff, school leaders, academic coaches and other teacher leaders. Aligned to the the Certified School Improvement Specialist™ standards, the course helps participants to apply the standards in practice to their day-to-day school improvement facilitation efforts. Participants practice with coaching and social learning, and provide evidence in proficiency of facilitation of a systemic, collaborative school improvement process that gets results and is sustainable. The program is rigorous, job-embedded and evidence-based. Successful program completion earns a verifiable digital badge.

The Institute offers a wide range of development programs to support school improvement facilitators. Visit

Regional and Local Cohorts

To arrange a cohort in your school district, region or through a professional association, contact Deb Page at

Membership in a Professional Association

The Institute for Performance Improvement partners with the International Society for Performance Improvement (www.ISPI) to provide the SIS Network within ISPI to link school improvement practitioners in learning and networking. ISPI membership provides SIS Network members access to proven practices, tools and experts in performance improvement; national and regional conferences, research, periodicals and other resources to support their practices.

To join The International Society for Performance Improvement click the link below.

After joining the ISPI Network members will be contacted by Client Concierge, Erin Wagner via email.

Certifications and Designations

The Institute provides a fully evidence-based Certified School Improvement Specialist™ Certification. Applicants document their school improvement facilitation efforts and results. The process requires three to five years of experience guiding school improvement.

Applications require triangulated data to show the correlation of school improvement efforts, changes in performance, and student achievement. Attestation is required by a supervisor, clients or others who can verify the accuracy of the application.

The application is processed via a double-blind review process. Successful applicants are awarded a verifiable digital badge, good for three years.

If you would like to apply please click here: Certified School Improvement Specialist Application

For more information contact Certification National Director, Dr. Jean Quigg at