What Rodel Exemplary Principals Do

In June of 2016, MCESA became the new home of the Rodel Exemplary Principal program. Rodel selected MCESA to lead this program based on a shared belief of the importance of recognizing and developing our state's top school leaders.

Exemplary Principals mentor Aspiring Principals over a one-year period and participate in seminars that help them develop the strategies and tactics needed to lead an effective school in Arizona, while also providing them with the opportunity to build and maintain a network of similarly qualified leaders that can provide support and guidance throughout their careers. Training is focused on establishing the leadership skills necessary to create schools and classrooms in which students are learning at a high level. Future administrators learn how to create a positive school culture, how to identify and evaluate highly effective teachers, how to develop collaborative classrooms, how they can incorporate parent support, and how to train and monitor teachers as they utilize data to support instruction. Survey data and an independent evaluation reveal Aspiring Principals are better prepared for the challenge of successfully leading schools in Arizona.

2017 Rodel Exemplary Principals

Wayne Deffenbaugh

Wayne Deffenbaugh

Amalia Garcia

Amalia Garcia

Kristi Langley-Wells

Kristi Langley-Wells

Hilary O'Brien

Hilary O'Brien

Denis Parcells

Denis Parcells

Jan Stevens

Jan Stevens

Tim Thomas

Tim Thomas

Tonja Yalung

Tonja Yalung


2016 Rodel Exemplary Principals

Shannon Bonnette

Shannon Bonnette

Karie Burns

Karie Burns

Frank Garcia

Frank Garcia

Bennett MacKinney, Ed.D.

Bennett MacKinney, Ed.D.

Kate McDonald

Kate McDonald

Chad Miller

Chad Miller

Lori A. Sheffield

Lori A. Sheffield

Stacie Zanzucchi

Stacie Zanzucchi


Exemplary Principal Perks

An Exemplary Principal receives recognition for making measurable differences in the lives of students, staff and the local community. Exemplary Principals will be recognized through our partnerships with local media as well as through our social media outlets. More importantly, the Exemplary Principals who are selected have the opportunity to give back to the next generation of school leaders by sharing their expertise and experiences through differentiated and targeted mentoring opportunities.

How Exemplary Principals are Selected

  • Researchers review the last three years of achievement data for principals working in high-need schools that have a minimum of 50% of their students receiving Free or Reduced Price Lunch. Researchers identify schools with a history of high student achievement and invite superintendents or charter holder representatives to nominate principals based on the Selection Criteria.
  • Superintendent nominations are carefully reviewed by our selection committee and semifinalists are selected. School observations and interviews are arranged with these semifinalists to look for evidence of effective leadership practices.
  • Our selection committee visits each semifinalist. The site visits include interviews with the principal and selected staff members, a campus tour, and classroom walkthroughs.
  • The selection committee reviews their observations and narrows the field to a prestigious group of finalists.
  • Finalists are invited to a working session so that the selection committee may get to know each of them as they spotlight their school’s successes with their peers.
  • Following the working session, the committee determines which finalists will be recognized as Exemplary Principals and asked to mentor future school leaders.
  • Each cohort of Exemplary Principals is announced in January. They are recognized through our site and our media partners for their dedication to improving Arizona’s public education system.

EXEMPLARY PRINCIPAL SELECTION CRITERIA

Superintendents may nominate candidates who:

  • have served a minimum of three years as a principal and are currently at a school where 50 percent or more of the students are eligible for participation in the free or reduced-price school lunch program (FRL% of feeder schools may be considered to determine program qualification);
  • have a documented history of high student achievement, as measured by required summative assessment data, for a minimum of three years;
  • ensure a safe campus environment that supports a respectful culture focused on teaching and learning;
  • utilize data to guide instruction and decisions regarding staff development;
  • actively engage parents and the community in the education of their child;
  • indicate a commitment to remain an active administrator for a minimum of two additional years;
  • demonstrate the ability to successfully develop and inspire others; and
  • have the skill-set and a strong desire to mentor and train aspiring principals.