School Executive Leadership
and Superintendent Certificate
SCHOOL OF EDUCATION
The School Executive Leadership and Superintendent Certification programs emphasize the knowledge and skills appropriate to district-level administrative assignments in the PK–12 setting such as superintendent, assistant superintendent, deputy superintendent, directors, and other similar roles.
While both programs prepare educational leaders, the two programs differ in the fact that the executive leadership program does not necessarily lead to superintendent certification unless the candidate possesses the prerequisite certification requirement.
The superintendent program is based on the Interstate School Leaders Licensure Consortium (ISLLC) standards and, as a result, those completing the program should be able to:
- Develop and implement a vision for learning that is supported by school and community stakeholders.
- Ensure there is a culture that sustains a coherent professional development and instructional program conducive to student learning.
- Effectively manage the organization and resources for a safe and effective learning environment.
- Collaborate with families and community members to mobilize resources in responding to diverse community interests and needs.
- Act with integrity, fairness and in an ethical manner.
- Understand and appropriately respond to the political, social, and cultural dynamics of a school district.
A candidate who possesses the necessary prerequisite certificates and successfully completes this program will qualify for the Washington Initial School
The program consists of a sequence of six 3-credit courses offered over a two-year period, and an internship
consisting of at least 360 hours of field experience.
Classes meet three times per quarter in a Friday afternoon/Saturday morning format. Readings and case studies are assigned in advance to maximize
the amount of time for discussion, dialogue, and reflection. This program has three key components:
- Team Building. Participants go through the six-course sequence as a cohort. Monthly meetings
with these same individuals also provide opportunities for networking and team building.
- Weekend Coursework. Classes meet three times per quarter, Friday afternoon to Saturday
afternoon. Monthly sessions include (1) review of in-district internship work; (2) discussion of case
studies; and (3) best-practice presentations by current practitioners. Participants are involved in
selecting topics and planning the activities.
- Field Experience. Field experience is an integral part of the coursework and takes place over the
same two-year period as the coursework. The goal of the internship is to develop the hands-on
experience and skill needed to increase student learning through district-level leadership. The
major focus of the internship is a meaningful, district-wide project that will make a difference in
improving the district and address the portfolio criteria for the internship. In addition, shadowing,
teamwork, and reflection are part of the internship process.
ITEMS REQUIRED FOR ADMISSION
The following materials are to be submitted for admission into the program:
- A graduate application.
- A $50 processing fee.
- Official transcripts from all institutions where a degree was conferred or where post-master's
graduate coursework was completed. (To maintain their official status, transcripts must remain
sealed in their original envelopes.) Each candidate for the school superintendent's certification program must have completed a master's, doctorate, or other advanced degree.
- A copy of the applicant's most recently earned professional teacher, ESA, principal, or program administrator certificate.
- Proof of three years experience as a school administrator.
- Two letters of recommendation. These must represent a current assessment of the applicant's
qualifications. It is preferred that one recommendation be from the applicant's supervisor. The other
may be from an instructor, another supervisor, pastor, or a colleague. Recommendations must
remain sealed in their original envelopes.
- A letter from the superintendent of the applicant's district, indicating that the district will work with
him or her to make an internship experience possible. (If no internship site is available, the applicant
should include a note to this effect with the application.)
Exceptions to the above
requirements should be approved through the program chair, Dr. Richard Smith, before application materials
are submitted. Contact him at 206-281-2375 or email@example.com.
SCHOOL EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP
The School Executive Leadership program is intended for those who wish to prepare to become educational leaders but do not meet the prerequisite certification requirements necessary for superintendent certification. Students in this program will take the same coursework as the Superintendent Certification program but will not be eligible for a superintendent’s certificate at the completion of the program.
GENERAL ADMISSION INFORMATION
The two tracks of this program — school executive leadership and superintendent certification — are set up on a cohort format, with coursework beginning Autumn Quarter.
- About 15 applicants are admitted each year.
- Candidates are admitted as application materials are completed and reviewed.
- Candidates may begin the program during any quarter with the approval of the program chairperson.
All items required for applicant evaluation are to be sent together in one packet. These materials should be directed to:
The Graduate Center
Seattle Pacific University
3307 Third Avenue West, Suite 111
Seattle, Washington 98119-1922
Applications are accepted throughout the school year. To facilitate timely evaluation, applicants should send
the necessary items a quarter before planning to enroll.
International students are not generally admitted to the superintendent-preparation program. International
students who would like more information on admission requirements should call the chair of the program at
Once all items have been received, the evaluation will be based on University standards for graduate
admission. Individuals are notified by letter. call The Graduate Center at 206-281-2091 or
800-601-0603 if you have questions about this process.
One 3-credit course and one 1-credit field experience will be offered each quarter. Participants who take one course every quarter, plus the field experience,
will finish in two years. Participants may take longer, but taking one course each quarter is highly
The Superintendent Certification program is a self-contained program leading to state certification.
It can also be an integral part of a doctor of education degree. The School Executive Leadership program will prepare individuals for work in educational administration. Coursework from the School Executive Leadership and Superintendent Certification program meets the elective requirements of the doctoral program.
2009-10 Graduate Time Schedule | Academic Calendar | Graduate Homepage
Older Editions of the Graduate Catalog
2006-2007 | 2005-2006 | 2004-2005 | 2003-2004 | 2002-2003