DPS staff start leadership training at UM’s Ross School

The Detroit News

Dozens of employees at Detroit Public Schools, including teachers, principals and district administrators, are undergoing specialized leadership training this week by faculty at the University of Michigan’s Stephen M. Ross School of Business.

The 2 1/2 days of training, which began Tuesday, is part of a new partnership with the Ross School aimed at transforming the district’s business operations to promote greater academic achievement at the district’s schools.

Altogether, 83 DPS staff members are participating, including 21 principals and teachers, 18 academic/curricular leader, 24 educational support leaders and the district’s administrative cabinet.

The training is part of a restructuring plan Emergency Manager Darnell Earley announced last month to revamp operations in the district, which has been plagued by declining enrollment, low test scores and persistent financial deficits, including a projected shortfall this year of more than $160 million.

“The bottom line is that we must restructure the services that the district provides to schools and families to focus on academic success, first and foremost, and to ensure that our schools’ progress not only continues, but accelerates,” Earley said in a statement.

The training, which is being done at no charge to DPS, is being led by Kim Cameron, the William Russell Kelly professor of management and organizations in the Ross School of Business and professor of higher education in the School of Education, and Robert Quinn, the Margaret Elliott Tracy collegiate professor in business administration in the Ross School.

The DPS staff members participating in the training will receive follow-up visits by Ross faculty in coming months.

“Our aspiration in partnering with the Detroit Public School system leaders is to help provide a leadership foundation that will produce extraordinary performance in DPS,” Cameron said. “The positive energy and commitment exemplified by DPS leadership is an important prerequisite in helping a system that has been struggling become a benchmark for the rest of the nation.”