Mission and Approach  

Our Mission

School Empowerment Network’s mission is to foster excellence and equity by creating thriving schools that enable each and every student to succeed.

Leveraging our experience launching 121 new schools in New York City, we achieve this by partnering with school systems to redesign and open schools, recruit and develop transformative new principals and leadership teams, establish teacher career ladders, and build district capacity to sustain excellence.

Our Approach

SEN addresses struggling schools at their core by recruiting, training, and positioning new leaders to establish new cultures of high expectations and to create effective systems and structures that guide community members to meet these renewed standards. This approach is based upon our decades of experience starting, leading, and coaching schools as principals and district leaders, and is designed to be the antidote to cosmetic tinkering and ineffective approaches to school turnaround.

Underlying our strategy is the observation that all districts are home to talented educators who, when properly recognized, organized, and developed, can lead transformative change in their schools. SEN identifies and works intensively with these emerging leaders to unlock their potential, and can support them by developing aligned school leadership teams, creating career ladders that retain and promote emerging talent, and coaching central office teams to lead school improvement work.

Our interventions are designed to bring about the common attributes of thriving schools:

Attributes of Thriving Schools SEN Interventions
Rigorous Diagnosis of School Improvement Needs SEN conducts School Quality Reviews to target supports directly to priority needs
Visionary Leadership SEN recruits, selects, and develops entrepreneurial leaders to drive transformational change
Context-Specific, Innovative School Models SEN leads a yearlong school design process to flesh out the selected school leader’s academic vision
Continuous Development of School Leaders SEN sustains its on-site coaching through the first year of new school implementation
Autonomy and Support to Innovate SEN provides executive coaching to district supervisors to help protect and maintain school innovation
An Internal Leadership Pipeline SEN helps establish career ladders to identify and retain talent and to populate school leadership teams aligned to the school vision
Connections with the Community SEN designs community engagement processes to collect community input and consistently communicate the benefits of the school improvement strategy

Learn more about the School Model Development work that frequently serves as the core of our engagements with school systems, our School Quality Reviews, and the Additional Supports we provide.