School District Leadership, Advanced Certificate

31 Credits
The School of Education
Queens Campus, Staten Island Campus, Online


The School District Leader Advanced Certificate is an accredited diploma program created exclusively to prepare school principals to assume roles in the district office.

Graduates of this innovative program will earn the New York State Certification to become a School District Leader in central administration offices. All courses are designed to train professional educators to assume various administrative, supervisory and leadership roles in schools and other educational organizations. 30 of these credits may be transferred towards the doctoral program.

Program Elements
Courses are taught by faculty members who are both experienced scholars and practitioners. This dynamic combination provides students with a balance of sound theory and practical application.  Faculty advisors are arranged for each student. The department’s faculty, administration and staff are available to assist students.

As an academic leader in technology, St. John’s University offers all courses in this program both on campus as well as through our Online Learning option. This provides the flexibility to attend courses weeknights or work at your own location through our online courses.

Department Contact

Dr. Mary Ellen Freeley
Department of Administration and Instructional Leadership
Sullivan Hall, 522
Queens, NY 11439


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Admissions Requirement

Please view the School of Education Graduate Admission Application Requirements for detailed admission information.

Applicants must submit the following evidence of their ability to pursue graduate study:

  • A baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university.
  • Normally a “3.0 GPA” in the general average and in the major field.
  • A minimum of three years of successful teaching experience and/or pupil personnel services.
  • New York State Permanent Teaching Certification.

Graduate Admission Information

The School of Education
Office of Graduate Admissions

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Career Outcomes

The graduate programs in Educational Administration enable educators to acquire scholarly knowledge, technical skills, intellectual curiosity and legal and ethical awareness in order to make a positive contribution in the organization and administration of public and nonpublic schools. The programs seek to produce informed leaders whose expertise will be well grounded in theory to support their efforts to deal with varied issues and problems in the school setting and to make innovative contributions to the reform and restructuring of current educational practice.

Students can participate in the program at the Master’s level and become certified as a School Building Leader (SBL), at the Advanced Certificate Level and become certified as a School Building Leader (SBL), School District Leader (SDL) or at the Doctoral Level, leading to the Doctor of Education Degree (Ed.D.).

The program will prepare graduates to:

Demonstrate knowledge of the role of instructional supervision in creating a learning environment that supports student achievement.

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the function of instructional supervision within the overall organizational structure of schools.
  • Identify the distinct instructional and leadership roles of supervisors working with classroom teachers that support and sustain effective learning environments for students and staff.
  • Illustrate selected supervisory techniques and strategies and their advantages and disadvantages.
  • Critique the effectiveness of formative and summative evaluation in the supervision process.
  • Construct a paradigm of professional development that focuses on mentoring and collaboration

Understand the knowledge and skills required of school leaders.

  • Demonstrate the ability to share and promote an articulated vision for schools.
  • Demonstrate the interpersonal and human relation skills needed for goal setting, problem solving and decision making in a collaborative working environment.
  • Apply leadership skills within and beyond the school community with emphasis on parents, business partners and professional organizations.
  • Manage the finances, facilities and other noneducational services necessary for the operation of a school.
  • Affiliate with professional organizations (PDK, ASCD, ASBO etc.) in order to broaden and strengthen professional growth.

Demonstrate knowledge of the current research, major theories, models and principles of teaching and learning.

  • Describe the relationship between curriculum, instruction and teaching and learning
  • Compare the differences among teacher styles, teacher processes, teacher behaviors, teacher effectiveness and their influence upon learning
  • Design teaching and instructional prescriptions for responding to individual students’ abilities, needs and interests
  • Evaluate the use of appropriate student support services to meet the individual learning needs of students

Understand the value, power and role of maintaining a high standard of personal and professional ethics.

  • Setting a standard and developing a plan for educating students about personal and social responsibility.
  • Communicating the dilemmas and difficulties of ethical decision-making by demonstrating a willingness to risk your own self-interest for the sake of organizational and community goals.
  • Maintaining a high level of personal, professional and academic integrity.
  • Establishing a strong relationship with the larger community by understanding its values, beliefs and principles.
  • Taking seriously the perspectives of others by listening and working within the community.
  • Establishing clear legal, social and organizational parameters for ethical decision-making while displaying the courage and willingness to take risks and accept responsibility for the outcome.

Understand the value of human resources in leading an organization.

  • Recognizing that the people in the organization are its greatest resource by valuing the professional contributions of the staff, developing the staff’s ability to relate to people and fostering collaborative relationships within and outside the school community.
  • Acknowledging and supporting each individual’s skills by including their contributions in determining and realizing the mission and vision of the organization.
  • Developing the interpersonal skills that help employees relate to others, improve work processes that facilitate the organizations’ collective efforts, and address the needs of individuals as well as groups.
  • Trusting the strength of others by valuing their efforts and contributions and by formally and regularly recognizing those efforts.

Demonstrate the ability to conduct research that will make a significant contribution to the field.

  • Develop procedures for independently investigating educational issues using both statistical and qualitative methods.
  • Analyze the existing body of research in order to make recommendations for appropriate programs, products and services for schools and districts.
  • Draw reasoned interpretations from investigations to make informed decisions regarding educational issues.
  • Apply professional and ethical standards to research and to work in the field
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Additional Information

What you Need to Know (Gainful Employment Disclosures) 


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