CAIS Foundations for School Leadership Program: Designing a Practice

Are you planning to launch your Leadership Institute journey leading to the CAIS Diploma in Independent School Leadership over the next year?

Register this summer for the Foundations for School Leadership Program: Designing a Practice (FSLP) offered in the first week of the 2021 Leadership Institute (LI) this summer (July 5-9, 2021). This is now the prerequisite program for the 10 module program leading to the diploma.

For this year only, participants who began the Diploma Program in the fall (2020) or spring (2021) may opt to take the Foundations program. First time participants may also take two additional modules in the second and third weeks of the 2021 LI this summer (July 13-15 and July 20-22). After registering for the FSLP, please go to the Diploma Program page to register for modules in the second and third week of this summer's LI.

Foundations for School Leadership Program (for new LI participants)
Monday, July 5, - Friday, July 9, 2021

Program Time Frame
The program will begin each day at:

  • 1:00 p.m. AT
  • 12:00 p.m. ET
  • 11:00 a.m. CT
  • 10:00 a.m. MT
  • 9:00 a.m. PT

There will be a combination of 3 hours of synchronous learning, 1 hour of collaborative group time and 2 hours of individual time that may include: reading, reflection and journal work. The sequence of time will vary day to day so it’s best if participants plan to be available to give your full attention during the 6 hours. There will be scheduled breaks throughout each day.



Supporting the learning and development of independent school leaders is a strategic priority  for CAIS that supports school improvement and innovation. Recent CAIS research indicates a growing need for motivated, diverse, and expert leadership. The Leadership Praxis (Building the Future: The Importance of Leadership Development & Succession Planning in Our Schools PDF), a framework of knowledge and competencies needed to be a successful independent school leader, reflects the Indicators of Effective Practice highlighted in the 2021 CAIS Accreditation Standards. The Praxis has guided the structure of the Leadership Institute, ensuring that it is intentional, comprehensive and organized to meet the needs of aspiring leaders.

This course provides a knowledge of leadership competencies and actions that meets you where you are in your career. With support from expert facilitators and the cohort experience you will gain a deeper sense of your strengths and areas for growth as you build both confidence and expertise.

Beginning in 2021, this five (5) day course will be offered each summer, and is a prerequisite for participants who wish to pursue the CAIS Diploma in Independent School Leadership.

Course Goals

The overarching goals are to: 

  • Establish a foundation of leadership knowledge and skills based upon the CAIS Leadership Praxis.
  • Develop a deep understanding of the dispositions of effective leaders.
  • Identify and design an intentional leadership practice that builds upon a participant’s personal and professional experience.
  • Cultivate and integrate a pluralistic lens or mindset within the educational setting and beyond.
  • Develop a network of professional colleagues.



Course components include:

  • Pre-course Lumina Spark Profile Assessment.
  • Pre-course work.
  • Building a toolkit of competencies and knowledge of self and leadership practices.
  • Self-reflection.
  • Developing cultural competence and awareness.
  • Identifying key personal leadership practices.
  • Synchronous and asynchronous learning opportunities in large and small groups and dyads.
  • Practicing protocols for effective organization.


Course Information

  • This course is open to faculty and staff from CAIS schools ($1,080.00) and non-CAIS schools ($1,500.00) who are new to the CAIS Leadership Institute or who have begun the LI program in the Fall 2020 or Spring 2021. The fees are specific to online programs.
  • The course will be presented online via Zoom from Monday, July 5 to Friday, July 9, 2021.
  • Participants who complete this course and 10 modules in the CAIS Diploma Program will earn the CAIS Diploma in Independent School Leadership.
  • This course will be offered annually during the summer.
  • Maximum capacity - 24 participants.
  • For further information see CAIS LI FAQ’s or contact Shannon Byck.


Course Facilitators