Leading a Liberated District for Transformative Change

Leading a Liberated District for Transformative Change creates a superintendent community of practice centered around research-based approaches that support school district leaders and schools to embrace and implement equity-centered leadership.

The two-and-a-half-day experience invites superintendents to explore common challenges and design solutions for their districts. The institute starts with an informal gathering to meet and greet fellow superintendents from across the state. Then, a panel of diverse superintendents from across the state will share reflections on the journey they have taken to create and sustain impactful, equity-centered practices across their district.

In the following two days, superintendents attend practice-based workshops with opportunities to reflect on practice, share and develop solutions, and apply learning to their context. The workshops focus on:

  • Liberatory Systemic Leadership: Build a clear vision to publicly lead and communicate for systemic equity by liberating schools to support deeper learning and culturally sustaining instructional practices
  • Liberatory Inclusive Practices: Implement and evaluate safe, healthy, and empowering school environments
  • Liberatory Learning Practices: Draw on family and community assets to support student-centered learning
  • Liberatory Data Systems: Develop and use tools to measure progress toward more equitable schools

This innovative institute is led by UW–Madison Educational Leadership Policy Analysis (ELPA) faculty, with workshops facilitated by Superintendent Carlton Jenkins (MMSD), Rich Halverson, Barbara Sramek, Madeline Hafner, and Ashley White.

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

Subscribe for updates about Leading a Liberated District for Transformative Change

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

The workshops will be grounded in five mindsets from the National Equity Project’s Liberatory Design Framework:

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

Build Relational Trust

Invest in relationships with intention, especially across differences. Honor stories. Practice empathetic listening.

Practice Self-Awareness

Who we are determines how we design and lead. Looking in the “mirror” reveals what we see, how we relate, and how our perspectives impact our practice.

Focus on Human Values

Get to know the community we are leading and design with in as many different ways as possible. Anchor all of our decision-making in human values.

Work to Transform Power

Explore structures and opportunities for interactions in which power is shared, not exercised.

Work with Fear and Discomfort

Fear and discomfort are anticipated parts of equity design and leadership work. Identifying the sources of such feelings offers us a context to work through them and continue to design.

Our goal is to create a state-wide network of district-level leaders to share experiences and design innovations. Join Superintendent colleagues and UW–Madison Education faculty to focus on leading for a transformational change!

Faculty Planning Committee

Madeline Hafner

Position title: Executive Director, MSAN Consortium

Richard Halverson

Position title: Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis

Carlton Jenkins

Position title: Superintendent of Madison Metropolitan School District (MMSD)

Yorel Lashley

Position title: Director of Programs

Richard McGregory

Position title: Chief of Staff at Madison Metropolitan School District

Tina Salzman

Position title: Clinical Professor, Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis, UW–Madison

Barbara Sramek

Position title: Clinical Professor, Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis