As the nation and the field of K-12 education face unprecedented challenges, Baylor School of Education was proud to celebrate the first graduates in the SOE’s EdD in K-12 Educational Leadership in May 2020.
“Cohort One, including the program’s first seven graduates, is an extraordinary team of students who carried a positive vision of completing their Doctor of Education degree in K-12 Educational Leadership,” said Dr. John Wilson, Clinical Professor and Program Director. “Children and education will be better with the high character and leadership skills possessed by these May 2020 graduates, many of whom have already moved forward in their careers with advancements and greater responsibilities in their current or new school districts. We are very proud of these seven graduates and their accomplishments.”
The Baylor Doctor of Education (EdD) in K-12 Educational Leadership is a cohort-based practitioner-oriented program for leaders of schools, educational systems, and agencies. Designed for the dedicated working education professional with weekend scheduling, the program prepares highly qualified practitioners to lead K-12 education institutions, while refining skills for executive positions. A new cohort begins each year in June, and Cohort Four began this year. The EdD program also includes preparation for the Texas superintendent certification exam, and all graduates who chose to take the exam passed it.
Hear from the SOE’s May 2020 EdD Graduates:
Principal, Tommie and Bobbie Clack Middle School, Abilene ISD
Dissertation: Examining Junior High School Principals’ Perception of a Delayed School Start Time
“I am excited to move from the role of assistant principal to principal next school year, and the Baylor EdD program played a big part in helping me gain the experience to be ready to do so. This program has allowed me to gain a global perspective on K-12 education and prepared me to meet the ever-changing challenges that we face in serving students. While the Baylor Faculty and Adjunct Staff provided an exceptional learning experience, the most meaningful component of the Baylor EdD program is the cohort model. My fellow doctoral colleagues are a group of the finest professionals in education whom I continue to learn from daily and will collaborate with throughout my leadership journey.”
Special Education Liaison to TEA for Education Service Center (ESC) Region 12
Dissertation: Principals’ Perceptions of Self-Efficacy to Administer Special Education in Relation to Regional Education Service Center Professional Learning Opportunities.
“For others considering this program, I would say to take the leap of faith and invest in yourself by joining a future cohort of Baylor’s EdD Program in K-12 Educational Leadership. I chose my dissertation topic because of the impact school-based administrators have to positively influence the achievement outcomes of students with disabilities. My opportunities for advancement are certain, as is my potential for future publications and authorship.”
Independent Educational Consultant, Researcher, and Instructional Designer
Dissertation: The Search for a New Order: A Historical Analysis of Community-based Accountability in Texas Public Education
“For my dissertation research, I took a short ‘qualitative road trip’ throughout the state of Texas, interviewing educational thought leaders across the state who are involved in TASA’s visioning work and the CBAS movement. I was inspired by the diverse practitioners in our field and the diverse landscape in Texas.
“The cohort model is an invaluable aspect of the Baylor program. You work alongside scholar-practitioners from across the state, and you have an opportunity to interact with a diverse group of educational thought leaders, including former commissioners, current and former legislators, educational entrepreneurs, and active superintendents.”
Assistant Principal, Midway Middle School, Midway Independent School District
Dissertation: The Effects of Chronic Absenteeism in Kindergarten on Third-Grade STAAR Scores
“Though I’ve moved from an elementary assistant principal to a middle school assistant principal within Midway ISD, I would argue that the biggest impact this program has had on my career is the vast network of administrators, superintendents, and movers and shakers in the world of education I’ve had the opportunity to meet and get to know. Our network spreads across the state and is at all levels in the world of education. For those considering this program, I would tell them that you won’t find another program that brings in as many sitting superintendents or that works to build your professional network like Baylor.
Director of Human Resource Services, Midlothian ISD
Dissertation: Effective Middle School Practices to Reduce the Frequency with Which Students Share Sexually Explicit Content
“The Baylor EdD cohort model was the perfect fit for me. This journey would not have been as impactful without my classmates.
“And I am so grateful for all of our professors and guest speakers. I would tell others considering the EdD that you won’t regret making the decision to earn your doctorate at Baylor.”
Coordinator for English Learners (PK-12) and Coordinator for Elementary Science and Social Studies (K-4), Midway ISD
Dissertation: Factors Affecting Teacher Retention in a Local School District
“I recommend this EdD program, hands down. The knowledge I’ve gained, the professional network I’ve established, and the friendships I’ve formed will have an impact on me for the rest of my life. Earning my EdD has given me greater knowledge of public-school administration and new skills. My expanded knowledge base has also given me the confidence to take on new roles at work and to aspire to higher positions in the public education system. I chose my dissertation topic because, in order to ensure that all students have a high-quality equitable education, we have to ensure teachers stay in the classroom and continue to grow and develop as leaders of learning. Researching this topic has created a new passion for me. I plan to continue advocating for new ways to increase teacher retention.”
Deputy Superintendent of Administrative Services & Leadership Development, Lamar CISD
Dissertation: An Examination of Leadership Development Strategies of Fast-Growth Public-School Districts in Texas
“Personally, the biggest impact of this program is the Baylor network and the strong relationships between the faculty and students. Professionally, I was twice promoted during the program. Initially from Executive Director to Chief of Staff and then again to Deputy Superintendent immediately following graduation. . . . My dissertation examined how effective leadership development programs are offering viable approaches for fast-growth public-school districts to systemically improve student performance from within the organization. As a result of my research and experiences, I now oversee multiple departments, including leadership development, in one of the fastest-growing school districts in Texas.”
ABOUT BAYLOR SCHOOL OF EDUCATION
For more than 100 years, Baylor educators have carried the mission and practices of the School of Education to classrooms and beyond as teachers, leaders in K12 and higher education, psychologists, academics/scholars and more. With more than 50 full-time faculty members, the schoolâ€™s growing research portfolio complements its long-standing commitment to excellence in teaching and student mentoring. Baylorâ€™s undergraduate program in teacher education has earned national distinction for innovative partnerships with local schools that provide future teachers deep clinical preparation, while graduate programs culminating in both the Ed.D. and Ph.D. prepare outstanding leaders, teachers and clinicians through an intentional blend of theory and practice. Visit www.baylor.edu/soe to learn more.
ABOUT BAYLOR UNIVERSITY
Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 16,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.