Participants in SPA are required to complete a 450-hour Administrative Internship during the intervening academic year. The specific details of the Administrative Internship are developed during the initial summer term through advisement with the intern’s program faculty, internship coach, and cooperating administrator and are documented in an official Internship Memorandum of Agreement (MOA).
Prior to the start of the program, students have pre-advising sessions explaining the purpose of the Administrative Internship. At the conclusion of the first five weeks of the program, each student submits an initial draft Memorandum of Agreement detailing the structure of the internship, outlining how he/she proposes to complete the field work and related internship requirements (as outlined in the course description) over the intervening school year. This memorandum is revised after consultation with the internship coach, cooperating administrator and Teachers College Internship Faculty. The final version of the MOA is signed and dated by the intern, internship coach, and cooperating administrator for commencing the internship in August.
The completed Memorandum of Agreement describes the internship project deliverables that are to be completed during the Administrative Internship. The intern carefully details how each project deliverable enables him/her to demonstrate competence with the various ELCC Standards that align with the project. In addition to the Memorandum of Agreement, students provide documentation of their internship experiences with appropriate endorsements from their Internship Coaches and Teachers College program faculty.
The Data-Driven Audit is designed to give candidates an opportunity to analyze the various components that comprise a successful school. Candidates learn to conduct internal and external audits, and use the data collected to evaluate the school’s ability to drive student achievement. Candidates must examine three years of data to identify successful practices and make recommendations for improvement.
Utilizing the internal and external scanning methods, students conduct a data-driven audit of a school.
This project is a baseline data collection initiative. The results of this work should be threaded throughout all future assignments in meaningful and reflective ways and appear as an appendix in other internship assignments. Students will begin with an assessment of the state and region, and center in on the community and then the school environment. Their analysis of school data connects their external audit to all sections of their internal school audit.
At the conclusion of the Data-Driven Audit, students will write a one-page memorandum describing their work for the Leadership Initiative Project as related to the data collected.
In the MOA, the intern, cooperating administrator, and Internship Coach outline the content and timeline for the major Administrative Internship deliverables. The MOA ensures that the internship projects are aligned with the SPA curriculum and NELP Standards. The assignment also provides an early opportunity for outlining the Leadership Initiative Project and should include this completed document.
The Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) is a living document that provides the vision for the Internship. A signature page is required from your coach and cooperating administrator to authorize the beginning of your internship.
The Principal Interview Report enables interns to experience various leadership styles that exist within a school setting. The assignment provides an environmental context for understanding the challenges and opportunities that a principal is likely to face as a leader. Engaging in the observation of three school building leaders helps interns develop a sense of their own leadership style and the kind of school environment most likely to fit well with their approaches to leadership. Writing in this assignment highlights the role of the principal to communicate the school’s vision and mission for educators in the community and other school stakeholders as well as value priorities that include equity, diversity, digital citizenship, and community. Candidates will demonstrate capacity to evaluate, develop, and implement systems of supervision, support, and evaluation designed to promote school improvement and student success.
The Teacher Evaluation Project provides interns with an opportunity to practice the supervision of instruction with a specific emphasis on developing and applying classroom observation skills. This project enables interns to provide constructive feedback to teachers about student learning, teaching, and learner-centered classrooms. Drawing from their experiences in ORLA 5018: School Leadership & Adult Development and ORLA 5029: Instruction of Supervision, interns conduct three clinical observation cycles on a single tenured teacher using the Louisiana COMPASS rubric. The Teacher Evaluation Project is designed to support interns’ acquisition of the skills needed to provide meaningful recommendations and commendations that will promote student achievement. Additionally, students will highlight the capacity to evaluate, develop, and implement high-quality and equitable academic and non-academic instructional practices, resources, technologies, and services that support equity, digital literacy, and the school’s academic and non-academic systems.
The Curriculum Case Study Project prepares candidates to develop instructional leadership skills in terms of curriculum and instruction. After conducting a series of informal and formal classroom observations, interns approach the task of designing a proposed action plan that addresses curricular/instructional areas that are in need of improvement from the point of view of the building administrator. The project also engages interns as leaders of digital technologies that can be better leveraged by teachers and administrators to improve instruction, student learning outcomes, teacher professional learning, and school improvement. Finally, the project provides deep reflective opportunities for interns to consider the moral and ethical implications of their advocacy decision-making as instructional leaders in and outside the school building. Engaging in these practices enables interns to develop the capacity for instructional leadership, while simultaneously fortifying observation, research, analysis, synthesis, reflection and presentation skills.
The Resource Allocation Project prepares candidates to develop the skills needed to exercise control of the budgeting of a variety of resources inclusive of curriculum, human, and financial resources as they step into leadership positions. After carefully considering a case study of Belle Plain Middle School, candidates are expected to conduct a SWOT analysis and generate a reflective plan of action. This project prepares candidates for their work in resource allocation during their second summer, and generates the mindset for improving resource allocations in order to leverage student achievement.
In consultation with their Internship Coaches and Cooperating Administrators, interns will assume a major leadership initiative that is aimed at increasing student achievement. Interns will outline a project for a predetermined period as agreed upon by the Internship Coach and Cooperating Administrator that includes the following elements: Fall (a) Conduct a Needs Assessment; (b) Submit a Proposal; Spring (c) Implementation Protocol Explained; (d) Data Collection & Analysis; (e) Final Evaluation of Initiative (f) Recommendations for Improvement/Termination.
At the conclusion of the Administrative Internship, interns are expected to submit a 9-12 page reflection paper that details their experiences. This analytic paper requires interns to stand back from the internship experience and think about the various ways that leadership impacts a school community.
Timelogs are the official record of the required Administrative Internship Hours, and must detail the intern’s progress weekly on identified deliverables and leadership activities. Interns are required to submit their timelogs accounting weekly totalling 10-15 hours per week over the course of 40 weeks. All logs must be submitted by the end of the spring semester.