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The CAIS Diploma in Independent School Leadership is designed to prepare participants for senior leadership roles in independent schools, particularly for Headships, by providing courses in most aspects of independent schools. It is expected that candidates will discuss participation with their Head of School.
Improving Our Programs
In response to ongoing surveys and as part of the CAIS Strategic Plan, we have developed a framework for leadership development (CAIS Leadership Praxis) and a pathway to guide participants as they seek leadership growth opportunities. For further details please read, Building the Future: The Importance of Leadership Development & Succession Planning in Our Schools
All, who have begun the CAIS LI prior to the summer of 2020, will continue to find both required and elective modules as before. The expectation of 6 required and 4 elective modules remains in place. Those new to the CAIS Leadership Institute beginning in the summer of 2020 will be required to take the new CAIS Introduction to Leadership to gain a broader understanding of leadership in an educational context. Moving forward, participants will then select at least 2 modules from 3 categories: Academic (Academic, Co-curricular and Student Well-being and Support), Operational (specific functions including Admissions, Advancement, Finance, Governance etc.) and Cross-Network (modules that have a whole school orientation (Faculty and Staff Culture, Design Thinking, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Environmental Sustainability etc.).)
The Benefits of the Revised Program
Over the first 20 years of the LI program, modules were developed that addressed elements of leadership and specific operational school functions. Moving forward we have:
- Grounded our program in research and developing leadership knowledge and competencies in areas aligned with school effectiveness (the indicators of effective practice in our Accreditation Standards);
- Made plans to extend our module offerings to meet the needs of all aspiring leaders (not just those with academic backgrounds);
- Provided additional formal and informal time for participants to network;
- Included blended learning into our pedagogy;
- Made plans to offer online modules beginning the fall of 2021;
- Made connections between the Praxis framework and our Next Step and Heads’ Retreat.
The Award of the Diploma
The Diploma is awarded to those candidates who successfully complete the program within a five- year period.
Upcoming leadership institute
The 2020 Summer Leadership Institute Diploma Program will be offered virtually.
Would your school like to host a Leadership Institute?
Venues for the Leadership Institutes are selected based on the following criteria:
- Each year the 3 major CAIS events (Heads and Chairs Conference, National Leadership Conference and the Summer LI) are distributed across the country
- Summer LI venues are hosted by schools with large student residence capacity to minimize cost to participants.
- The Spring LI is tied to the NLC to minimize travel costs
“For the past three years, I have been privileged to attend the CAIS Leadership Institute, graduating this past summer at St. Andrew's College. Over the course of the program, I have enjoyed incredible networking and professional sharing and learning opportunities at CAIS schools in Aurora, St. Catharines, and Victoria, BC. Without a doubt, this experience has been the single most useful opportunity for professional growth in my career.
On a daily basis, I use the knowledge and skills gained while attending the institute in communicating more effectively with parents, students, and teachers, and in planning programming and curriculum that is both creative and also drives learning. The expertise of the course leaders (incredible CAIS educators), and the collaborative nature of the modules have pushed me to take what I have learned and apply it as I challenge myself to continue to develop in school leadership. There is no doubt that I am a better leader and educator thanks to the Leadership Institute.”
“My time at the LI genuinely changed how I accomplish and enjoy my role as a vice principal. The modules provided important insights into areas of running an independent school that I had either not considered or had little to no understanding of. Perhaps even more valuable to my LI experience was meeting, sharing, and problem solving with peers from all over the country. It was incredibly gratifying to learn that so many of us share the same challenges but more importantly can offer solid strategies and solutions to solve our common issues. I am also grateful for my time at the LI as I have developed friendships that I believe will last for the remainder of my career”
Network With Peers
Join Heads, Academic Leaders, Senior Administrators, Athletic Directors and Teachers from across Canada. Meet with existing colleagues and new ones to exchange your ideas and experiences.
Enhance Leadership Knowledge
Learn from research and experience. Receive national updates. Participate in discussions with colleagues from similarly excellent schools who share your passion for learning.
Celebrate CAIS Leaders
Receptions featuring Art of Leadership speakers and New CAIS Leaders presentations. Join us in congratulating the year’s LI Grads at the closing night banquet.
Become a Mentor & Find a Mentor
The Next Step Program includes a formal mentorship program. At the Leadership Institute, relationships are formed that inspire excellence. Mentor someone new to the field or explore your growth opportunities as a mentee.
Earn Your Diploma
At the request of headhunters who are recruiting future leaders, CAIS will share LI Grad profiles.