AASA, Howard University Host 5th Urban Superintendents Academy Conference

James Minichello
703-774-6953 (cell)

2019 National Teacher of the Year; School District Leaders Among Keynote Speakers 

Alexandria, Va. – Aug. 20, 2019 – Virginia social studies teacher Rodney Robinson, the 2019 National Teacher of the Year, is serving as a keynote speaker and will be joined by education leaders throughout the country when AASA, The School Superintendents Association, and Howard University host the fifth annual Urban Superintendents Academy Conference, Friday, Aug. 23, 2019, at the Embassy Suites by Hilton Alexandria Old Town in Alexandria, Va.

At a time when less than 5% of our nation’s superintendents are persons of color, the Urban Superintendents Academy prepares educators for certification and success in urban and increasingly diverse suburban settings, and bolsters the effectiveness of district leadership in those settings. The AASA/Howard University partnership is also designed to expand the pool of underrepresented superintendent groups.

“The Urban Superintendents Academy stands second-to-none when it comes to providing sitting and aspiring superintendents with a thorough and visionary program designed to develop and support effective urban school district leaders. We have a high superintendent placement rate to prove it,” said Daniel A. Domenech, executive director, AASA. “We are committed to serving students in urban districts and also assuring the success of underrepresented leaders to engage support as we work to identify those who can benefit from this exceptional program.”

Specific goals applicable to the program include:

  • Prepare for and successfully acquire a position as an urban superintendent.
  • Delineate and apply key skills of 21st century leadership.
  • Address critical problems and issues facing all urban superintendents today in a strategic and creative way.
  • Deal effectively and creatively with community relations and politics in the urban setting.

“This national academy is the only academy that offers an opportunity for aspiring urban school leaders to get on-the-ground training from experienced superintendents who support them as mentors,” said Joe Hairston, academy co-founder, Howard University School of Education.

Superintendents scheduled to address the fifth class of the AASA/Howard University Academy include: Sharon Contreras (Guilford County Public Schools, N.C.), Eric Gallien (Racine Unified School District, Wis.), Vince Matthews (San Francisco Unified School District, Calif.) and Gwendolyn Shannon (Southampton County Public Schools, Va.). Other speakers will include Devin Hughes, author and international thought leader, and Dwight Jones, vice president, urban markets, McGraw Hill Education.

“The challenges of dramatic demographic shifts, technology explosions and a rapidly transforming job market require a rethinking and transformational approach to preparing educational leaders,” said Dawn Williams, dean, Howard University School of Education. “Urban and increasingly diverse suburban districts require leaders who are fully prepared for the challenges facing every urban superintendent.”

“I want to be that change for children,” said Shaun Mason, manager, school operations, Baltimore City Public Schools, and a member of the 2018-19 cohort. “This program gives me the access to prepare, support and provide the necessary guidance for children.” 

For more information about the AASA/Howard University Urban Superintendents Academy, visit the AASA website. For questions, contact Bernadine Futrell, AASA director, leadership network, at bfutrell@aasa.org / 703-875-0717.

Click here to view the photo gallery of the 2018 AASA/Howard University Urban Superintendents Academy Conference.


About AASA
AASA, The School Superintendents Association, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders in the United States and throughout the world. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to equitable access for all students to the highest quality public education. For more information, visit www.aasa.org.