PMP382: Profoundly Impacting Learning Culture with Dan Kelley

Daniel Kelley is an Associate Teaching Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy at the University of Rhode Island. He previously served as the principal of Smithfield High School in Smithfield, RI. During his tenure, he successfully implemented sustainable change initiatives that profoundly impacted the school’s learning culture.

Dan’s contributions to education extend to national leadership roles as well. He served as the president of the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP) during the 2017-2018 school year and was a member of the NASSP Board of Directors for five years. His broad experience in education includes positions as a high school assistant principal, a high school and middle school special education teacher, and a middle school math and science teacher. In recognition of his outstanding leadership, he was named the Rhode Island Secondary Principal of the Year in 2012.

Fun Fact: Dan played rugby in college!

Listen into the entire episode to engage in a thoughtful conversation with Dan, as we explore the myriad of lessons in leadership and personal practices Dan instituted in leading a learning culture during his tenure at Smithfield High School. Dan’s broad spectrum of experiences, coupled with his passion for education, makes this episode a treasure trove of insights for school leaders at every stage of their careers.

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Dan Kelley

Topics of Discussion:

University Role:

  • Building a master’s degree program in leadership and education policy at the University of Rhode Island.
  • Teaching “Intro to American Education” to undergraduate students.

Consulting/Coaching Work:

  • Developments in training for aspiring leaders post his year as NASSP President.
  • Facilitation of leadership training programs in multiple states.

Advice for Aspiring Leaders:

  • Impactful leadership starts from where you are.
  • The importance of networking and continuous learning through various mediums.
  • The significance of shadowing seasoned leaders and building foundational strength in current roles.

Guidance for New Leaders:

  • The indispensability of networking and self-care.
  • Managing leadership challenges with external perspectives through therapy.

Insights for Veteran Leaders:

  • The importance of acknowledging daily achievements and maintaining student connections.
  • Leadership isn’t always easy, as illustrated by Dan’s inspiring and poignant stories from his own experiences.

Connect with Daniel Kelley:

Call to Action:

Reach out to Dan if you’re keen on presenting to any of his university program classes, or if you’re just looking to connect and learn more about educational leadership.

Remember to keep learning, growing, and making a profound impact in the lives of your schools. Thank you for being the beacon of transformative leadership in education. Keep tuning in for more enlightening conversations on Principal Matters, and thank you for doing what matters!

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William D. Parker
William D. Parker
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