M.A.S.S. Assistant Superintendent Leadership Seminars (ASLS)
A Leadership Program for Assistant Superintendents and Other Central Office Administrators
Assistant Superintendents hold an essential leadership position in a district. The primary goal of the Assistant Superintendent Leadership Seminars (ASLS) is to support Assistant Superintendents as they navigate their first few years in the role. The program serves to increase the understanding of leadership in school districts through promoting personal growth and reflection, building organizational capacity, and developing skill in addressing the political dimension of the work. The facilitators of the program are Dr. Anthony Bent, former MASS president and superintendent in four school districts, and Dr. Christine Francis, former principal in Belmont and assistant superintendent in Westford. Guest speakers and panels of educational leaders enhance the overall experience. In 2020-21, we will incorporate the leadership opportunities and challenges of the current educational environment.
ASLS I: Designed for Assistant Superintendents and other central office leaders, this series introduces a framework for addressing the leadership opportunities and challenges inherent in these positions. The curriculum and resulting discussions emphasize the importance of creating strong professional cultures and equitable practices through positive values, respect, modeling, communicating, and building capacity throughout the district. The program draws from texts, articles, case studies, videos, and discussion protocols. Sessions are designed to create a supportive collaborative culture among the participants.
Dates for 2020-2021: ASLS I (Eastern): 8/27, 10/1 (Eastern and Central combined), 10/29, 11/19, 12/17, 1/28, 2/25, 3/25 (Eastern and Central combined), 4/29, 5/20 (make-up date)
Dates for 2020-2021: ASLS I (Central): 8/28, 10/1 (Eastern and Central combined), 10/30, 11/20, 12/18, 1/29, 2/26, 3/25 (Eastern and Central combined), 4/30, 5/21 (make-up date)
ASLS II: Designed for those who have completed ASLS I, this series builds upon the shared understandings developed in the first year of the program. Resources including texts, articles, case studies, videos, and discussion protocols focus the participants on their continuing understanding of leadership at the district level. Sessions are designed to nurture and continue the supportive collaborative culture created in ASLS I.
Dates for 2020-2021: ASLS II: 9/24, 10/22, 11/12, 12/10, 1/14, 2/11, 3/11, 4/15, 5/13 (make-up date)
ASLS III: Designed for those who have completed ASLS II, this series is organic in nature. It is structured around the specific interests and experiences of the participants, who share success stories, present problems of practice, and lead discussions of participant-chosen topics. Experienced assistant superintendents and other central office leaders who are not new to their leadership role may also be interested in joining this high-level discussion group. (They should consult with either Dr. Bent or Dr. Francis for more information.)
Dates for 2020-2021: ASLS III: 9/23, 10/21, 11/18, 12/9, 1/13, 2/10, 3/10, 4/14, 5/12 (make-up date)
What people are saying…
“In the past three years as a member of ASLS, I have grown as a district leader through our thought-provoking discussions, opportunities for reflection, and the resources provided.”
“These experiences have shaped my outlook on leadership and provided me with opportunities to grow and evolve as a leader now and in the future.”
“Sessions are well organized and well run. Everyone feels valued and supported by Christine and Tony’s genuine excitement for lifelong learning. I feel lucky to have been a part of it.”
Program Leader BIOS:
Anthony Bent holds a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, and doctorate from Boston College. His career includes the following: foreign language teacher, high school department head, and district coordinator of foreign languages. He also has held central office positions in Watertown, and was superintendent in Shrewsbury for fifteen years. In 2008-2009, Dr. Bent was president of the Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents (MASS). From 2009-2014, he was interim superintendent in three districts (Masconomet Regional, Leominster, Groton-Dunstable). Dr. Bent served on the Wellesley School Committee from 2015-2018.
Dr. Bent’s current work centers on coaching superintendents of schools using an organic framework that emerges from the needs of superintendents and the specific challenges that they face in their respective district. Additionally, he chairs the Global Studies-21st Century Skills Committee of MASS.
Also under the auspices of MASS, Dr. Bent co-leads the Assistant Superintendent Leadership Seminars (ASLS), a program that focuses on developing the leadership capacity of Assistant Superintendents and other Central Office administrators.
Christine Francis taught, led, and learned in urban and suburban public schools in the greater Boston area for 40+ years as a teacher, staff developer, curriculum coordinator, principal, and assistant superintendent of curriculum and instruction. She holds a doctorate degree in Educational Leadership from Boston College, master’s and CAGS degrees from Lesley University and a bachelor’s degree from Boston College. Her doctoral dissertation focused on the themes of culturally responsive teaching, interventions to address opportunity gaps, and professional development.
Her current work as an education consultant focuses on effective and strategic leadership that emphasizes collaboration among leaders and teachers. Her primary areas of interest include mentorship of school and district leaders; equity and culturally responsive teaching; global education and 21st-century learning; professional learning communities that focus on student learning; and educator evaluation as a tool to promote professional collaboration among educators and successful learning experiences for all students.
She co-leads two M.A.S.S. programs: ASLS (Assistant Superintendent Leadership Seminars) and the Mentor Program for New Assistant Superintendents. ASLS focuses on developing the leadership capacity of Assistant Superintendents and other Central Office leaders in the personal, organizational and political dimensions of these positions. The Mentor Program for New Assistant Superintendents is in its pilot year (2020-2021) and focuses on providing 1-1 support specific to each new assistant superintendent’s needs and context. In addition, through Teachers21, she co-leads CLS (Curriculum Leadership Seminars) for curriculum leaders, department heads and teacher leaders.
Registration Open for ASLS for 2020-2021
DEADLINE is August 1, 2020. Registrations after the deadline will be accepted on a space-available basis. Registration will automatically generate an invoice if you want to pay in FY20. We will re-invoice after July 1 for FY21.
The Assistant Superintendent Leadership Seminar is a leadership program for Assistant Superintendents and Other Central Office Administrators