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Network for College Success. A community of Chicago public high school leaders and partners committed to creating a model for collaboration and shared learning to transform our school communities to support college/postsecondary success for all students.

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Network for college success

Network for College Success

A community of Chicago public high school leaders and partners committed to creating a model for collaboration and shared learning

to transform our school communities

to support college/postsecondary success for all students

The School of Social Service Administration

at The University of Chicago

Ncs seeks to address three challenges that are central to chicago high schools over the next decade
NCS seeks to address three challenges that are central to Chicago high schools over the next decade:

  • How do we support leadership of new and existing high schools in developing instructional visions, strategies, professional communities and learning environments that raise the bar for Chicago public high schools?

  • How do we create mechanisms for cross-fertilization and transfer of innovation between new schools and charters, selective schools and neighborhood schools?

  • How do we create networks of leaders who have instructional strategies, demonstrated success and tool kits that will increase the capacity of the entire system to change?

The network for college success supports principals by offering
The Network for College Success supports principals by offering:

  • A forum to network and problem-solve with their peers to meet the complex challenges involved in transforming their schools;

  • Access to outside data and expertise to guide their school improvement efforts;

  • Support in developing professional communities, instructional leadership teams and quality college preparation programs within their schools

Principals network
Principals’ Network offering

  • Monthly sessions include:

    • Peer sharing: tools and strategies

    • Instructional Leadership: Examining and exploring the role of principal as instructional leader – professional readings; case studies; reflection and dialogue

    • Managing for change/improvement: Examining and exploring structures for collaboration, coherence, routine examination of data and accountability

Shared leadership to improve teaching and learning
Shared Leadership to Improve offeringTeaching and Learning

  • Facilitate learning and problem solving across schools around implementing a shared leadership model to improve student learning (

    • Highly effective instructional leadership teams

    • Schools identify a targeted instructional area using data and whole staff input, develop goals and implement a professional learning plan focused on improving and monitoring student learning

    • Instructional Leadership Team (ILT) Development and Support

      • ILT Institutes

      • Cross-School Visits/Learning Walks

      • In-School Coaching and Support

College prep
College Prep offering

  • College Counselors’ Collaborative monthly sessions

    • Rooted in the Consortium’s research on the Chicago Public Schools

    • Peer sharing and problem solving

    • Examining data (i.e. college match; FAFSA completion)

    • Building partnerships with colleges

Access to data and research
Access to Data and Research offering

  • Consortium on Chicago School Research

    • What Matters for Freshmen

      • School-level trends report for 9th Grade On Track

    • Potholes on the Road to College

      • School-level student-college match reports

    • Pathway to 20

      • School-level EPAS (Explore/Plan/ACT) analysis reports

Data continued
Data continued offering

  • PBI (Practice-Based Inquiry) Visits (

  • Data Coach to support schools in developing classroom-level data and systems for collecting and analyzing

  • Ron Ferguson’s Tripod Project Surveys (

Goals process
Goals - Process offering

  • Network SMARTe Goals for participating schools:

    • Establish an effective ILT

    • Align ILT to the work of Teacher Collaboration Teams

    • Identify a Targeted Instructional Area (TIA) and powerful instructional practices

    • Develop SMARTe goals for the TIA

    • Conduct a facilitated ILT learning walk

    • Develop, implement and monitor a Professional Learning Plan

Goals student outcomes
Goals – Student Outcomes offering

  • Years 1-3

    • Growth in school-developed SMARTe goals

      • Standardized and classroom-level measures

  • Year 4 and beyond

    • Chicago Public Schools Scorecard Measures

      • Demonstrate improvement in:

        • Freshmen On-Track to Graduate

        • Students Making Expected Gains (on EPAS)

        • Freshman Graduates within 5 years

        • Graduates Enrolled in College

  • Challenges
    Challenges offering

    • Time – for professional learning and planning

    • Competing priorities for schools (i.e. district structures; multiple initiatives)

    • Use of data in a systematic way

    • Lack of clear student learning outcomes and assessment data to set goals and monitor student learning

    • Sustaining focus (on the TIA; in the work)

    • Going deeper - not reverting to the “same old way of doing things”

    • Internal accountability systems/monitoring

    • Range of leadership capacity to provide vision for and drive the work

    Contact offering

    • Mary Ann Pitcher, Project Director


      • 773.702.1732

      • Web: