NYC Leadership Academy President & CEO Irma Zardoya will lead a session on the impact of inquiry-based change projects at the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP)’s National Principals Conference on July 12 in Chicago, IL. Yonkers Public Schools Superintendent Edwin Quezada and former Rochester City School District Schools Chief Beverly Burrell-Moore will join Ms. Zardoya in discussing the lessons learned from using change projects as part of their districts’ aspiring principal programs developed with the NYC Leadership Academy.

The session, called “Leading Change: Leveraging Change Projects to Positively Impact Your School and Build Leaders,” will explore the importance of using change projects as a lever for school improvement and leadership development. The Yonkers and Rochester school districts each used inquiry-based change projects in their aspiring principal programs as a means for helping principals more broadly engage staff in improving on what they teach, how they teach, and how well students learn. Change projects have been found to help not only improve student learning, but also build the capacity of staff to take ownership of instructional improvement and develop systems for sustainability. The session will be held on Thursday, July 12, 1:45 – 2:45 p.m., in room 176 a,b,c in the McCormick Place West Building.

Partnering with NASSP, the American Express Foundation funded the expansion of the NYC Leadership Academy’s flagship Aspiring Principals Program to Rochester and Yonkers in 2015 with a $600,000 grant.

“A critical piece of any aspiring school leader program is hands-on in-school experience,” said Ms. Zardoya. “We are thrilled to share what this can look like in practice with other districts and programs.”

About the speakers

Irma Zardoya has been President & CEO of NYC Leadership Academy since 2011. Prior to that she had a long career with the NYC Department of Education. She supported the launch of collaborative inquiry teacher teamwork citywide and spent several years as a superintendent in the Bronx. Under her leadership, District 10 was recognized as a successful district strongly committed to leadership development and building an effective leadership continuum. She has served on the New York State Commissioner’s Advisory Council on Bilingual Education; the Advisory Council for the Center for Educational Leadership of the New York Urban Coalition; and the Governor’s Commission on Education.

Dr. Edwin M. Quezada has been Yonkers Superintendent of Schools since March 2016. Prior to that, he served as Yonkers’ Deputy Superintendent and principal of Lincoln High School, which was recognized for improving student achievement. Dr. Quezada has received the Lehman Urban Teacher Education Award; the Asociación Cultural Dominicana de Yonkers Education Award; the Institute for Latino Studies’ Illustrious Award for Education; and the United Way Spirit of Westchester and Putnam Collective Impact Award.

Beverly Burrell-Moore is an accomplished administrator with more than 20 years of experience. Ms. Burrell-Moore recently retired from the Rochester City School District after eight years, where she served as School Chief and Deputy Superintendent. Prior to her tenure with Rochester, Ms. Burrell-Moore served the Rush-Henrietta Central School District for over 36 years, as a teacher, Assistant Director of Human Resources, Assistant Senior High School Principal, Middle School Principal, and Special Project Director.

About NYC Leadership Academy
NYC Leadership Academy is a nationally recognized nonprofit organization that builds the capacity of educational leaders, at every level of the system, to confront inequities and create the conditions necessary for all students to thrive. Since 2003, NYCLA has worked with educators in 185 school systems across 32 states, Washington, D.C., and internationally.


Contact: Jill Grossman