Hello! Here’s helpful information about and from the NYC iSchool SLT, which is separate from the PA but has some overlap, as the PA president or her designee is an automatic member of the SLT in any school.
What is the SLT?
Another important iSchool body is the School Leadership Team, which is composed of the principal, PA president or designee, teachers union chapter leader, plus elected parents, staff members, and students. The SLT meets 7-8 pm on the third Thursday of each month, currently via Zoom. (The meeting calendar and Zoom links for 2021-22 are here.)
The NYC iSchool School Leadership Team (SLT) is a group of representatives of the staff, administration and parent constituency of the school. We meet once a month, and are tasked with:
- Developing the school’s Comprehensive Educational Plan (CEP).
- Assisting in the evaluation of the school’s programs and their effects on student achievement.
- Helping develop school-based goals and policies and ensuring that resources (money, personnel, etc) are aligned to implement those goals and policies
The goals that were incorporated into the CEP fall under the following categories:
- Rigorous Instruction
- Supportive Environment
- Collaborative Teachers
- Effective School Leadership
- Strong Family-Community Ties
From the SLT co-chairs
As required by the New York City Department of Education (DOE), an SLT is responsible for developing the school’s educational plan, matching budget to needs, and building a sense of community.
The iSchool SLT is also explicitly devoted to combating social inequality and developing the iSchool’s creative and progressive pedagogical and curricular approaches. The SLT normally meets monthly, as per DOE guidelines, but since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have occasionally met more often, as we have collaborated with students, faculty, staff, and parents about the challenges of transitioning to remote learning, addressing digital divides, minimizing emotional and academic stress, promoting community health and wellness, and preparing for the future.
The DOE requires that parents make up half an SLT, and the iSchool has added more student and faculty slots in recent years to provide greater balance and fuller representation. Elections for parent members are held at the last and first meetings of each academic year—i.e. in June and September—and a spot is always reserved for the election of a parent of a first-year student in the fall. SLT meetings are governed by New York State’s Open Meetings Law and are always open to anyone wishing to attend—to listen, ask questions, or contribute thoughtfully.
While the role of the SLT is primarily as a deliberative and advisory body, we do make decisions that impact a variety of areas, including admissions, recruitment, resource allocation, curriculum, pedagogy, and professional development. Our meetings typically include hearing from our student representatives about student concerns, alongside those of administration, faculty, and parents. We have robust discussions as a group, and our subcommittees take up specific work like the creation of the iSchool’s first-ever all-school student-led assembly to bring the school community together after months of remote and hybrid learning toward the end of the 2020-21 school year. We encourage anyone who is interested in participating more fully in the SLT to run for election.
Please reach out if you have any questions or concerns.
Sue Jaye Johnson and Holly Epstein Ojalvo, Co-Chairs
School Leadership Team, NYC iSchool
SLT Members 2021-2022
Isora Bailey, principal
Katy Barber, UFT chapter leader
Sue Jaye Johnson (co-chair)
Holly Epstein Ojalvo (co-chair)
Ferrah Reid ’22
Hannah Kessler-Karp ’23
Isannah Marley ’23
SLT Subcommittees 2021-22
The SLT currently has four subcommittees:
Diversity and Equity
Supporting School Culture
Mental Health and Wellness