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BCSL Offers “Culture of Joy” Workshop for Educators [01/13/2021]


BCSL Leading a Culture of JoyBaylor Center for School Leaders (BCSL) is hosting an afternoon workshop, combined with a Baylor men’s basketball ticket, for teachers, principals, superintendents, and other school or district leaders. The workshop, titled “Leading a Culture of Joy,’ will be Tuesday, Jan. 25, from 1-5 p.m., and the registration deadline is Monday, Jan. 17. The event is $45 per person, and schools are encouraged to bring teams of educators to attend. Registration is online here: REGISTER

Dr. Matt Thomas, director of the center, said the workshop is focused on learning how to foster a system of effective and broad-based leadership within schools.

“The range of challenges in today’s schools means that a school leader cannot possibly meet the demands on their own, even if they are distributing tasks,” he said. “Leaders need to harness the collective expertise of a diverse range of people to tackle the myriad challenges.”

The title, “Leading a Culture of Joy,” of course references the motto of Baylor’s national championship basketball team, Thomas said. The workshop is designed to launch educators into 2022 with a “winning” plan for their team of educators, he said.

“Improvement science has shown that the complex work of education requires deliberative, collaborative educators using shared experiences to build healthy leadership cultures,” he said. This workshop will teach educational leaders some nuts-and-bolts strategies for implementing collaborative leadership.

“We believe this can be the best one-day professional development that educators will experience in 2022,” he said.


  • Tuesday, Jan. 25, 1-5 p.m. (evening basketball game)
  • Cost: $45 per person
  • Catered Meal included
  • One ticket to Baylor vs. Kansas State included. (Game is 7 p.m.)
  • Registration deadline: Monday, Jan. 17
  • Registration link: REGISTER


Dr. John Eckert, Baylor Professor of Educational Leadership and the Lynda and Robert Copple Endowed Chair in Christian School Leadership

Collective leadership is the research focus of Eckert, who is the author of  Leading Together: Teachers and Principals Improving Student Outcomes (Corwin, 2018) and numerous articles on the topic. Eckert has conducted research for the U.S. Department of Education, the Carnegie Foundation, the National Network of State Teachers of the Year, the National Institute for Excellence in Teaching, and the Center for Teaching Quality.

Dr. Bradley Carpenter, Associate Professor of Educational Leadership and Director of the Baylor Executive EdD in K-12 Educational Leadership.

As a former public-school teacher, assistant principal, and principal Dr. Carpenter has a passion for working with public school administrators to help them realize their identity as transformational leaders of school communities. Carpenter’s research is focused on three primary areas of scholarship: (a) Development of Social Justice- and Anti-Racist-oriented School Leaders; (b) Leadership Wellbeing; and, (c) How Discourses and Policymaking Shape Federal, State, and Local Policy.

Dr. Herb Cox, Assistant Clinical Professor in the Department of Educational Leadership

Cox joined the Baylor faculty in 2021, after retiring from 29 years of service in public education as a teacher, coach, assistant principal, and most recently as a principal. His first 12 years of service were as a teacher and a coach. His last 17 years were spent as an administrator, with the past 9 years as Principal of Midway Middle School in Midway ISD in Hewitt, Texas. His interest is in growing aspiring administrators who will lead in both the public and private school systems with a Christian emphasis and a focus on serving all of God’s children.

Dr. Angela Urick, Associate Professor in the Department of Educational Leadership

Dr. Urick trains aspiring K-12 leaders as well as education administrators in other government, non-profit or religious organizations. She specializes in leadership for school improvement for more equitable student opportunities. Through her work on academic climate and the relationship between principals and teachers, she uses innovative applications of theory and advanced quantitative techniques to understand the broader complexities of how leadership and policy decisions may influence school progress. Urick has won awards for her research and teaching, including the 2018 American Educational Research Association (AERA) Division A (Administration, Organization, & Leadership) Early Career Award.


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The Baylor Center for School Leadership (BCSL), situated in Baylor University’s School of Education, values and promotes the inestimable importance of Christian schools and the leadership of Christians in all types of schools in the U.S. and abroad. The BCSL equips leaders for impactful, innovative, mission-minded service in distinct school settings. The BCSL also equips schools with a diverse portfolio of activities that range from research to leadership development initiatives, the convening of conferences and symposia, and field-based consultative services. Ultimately, the BCSL aims to create an avenue for leaders of education to not only excel in the role of Christian leader but to provide transformational leadership within the leader’s distinct institution that will positively impact generations of students.


Baylor’s School of Education celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2019. With more than 60 full-time faculty members, the school’s growing research portfolio complements its long-standing commitment to excellence in teaching and student mentoring. The school boasts a variety of academic program options across its three departments: Curriculum and Instruction, Educational Leadership, and Educational Psychology. Baylor’s award-winning undergraduate program in teacher education serves approximately 400 students and has earned national distinction for innovative partnerships with local schools that provide future teachers with extensive clinical preparation.

More than 700 graduate students pursue advanced study and professional preparation in master’s, Ed.S., Ed.D., and Ph.D. programs. With multiple faculty searches underway and exciting new academic initiatives both at home and abroad, the school is in a period of significant expansion and is poised for greater impact through the production of meaningful, high-quality research and the preparation of outstanding leaders, teachers, and clinicians. Visit to learn more.

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.

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