Illinois Partnerships Advancing Rigorous Training  (IL-PART)

Bloomington Public Schools District #87 and Illinois State University 

District #87, located in central IL, has a long history of partnering with Illinois State University in the preparation of area teachers, principals and superintendents, and has a formal partnership with Illinois State specifically for the preparation of its principals. While certainly benefiting from its relationship with ISU, the District is not without its challenges. It currently has a poverty rate of 58% of students receiving free and reduced lunches). With a total population of approximately 78,000, Bloomington is proud of its diverse population, which is represented in the nearly 5,518 students enrolled in District 87. The racial make-up of the student population includes 53% Caucasian, 23% African-American; 13% Latino; 9% multi-racial; and 4% Asian. 6% of the students are categorized as limited-English proficiency.

Illinois State was established as a teacher education institution and has evolved into a university serving multiple purposes with degree programs at the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels. Located near the center of the state, it has an on-campus total enrollment of 20,000 students. The Illinois State College of Education offers their principal preparation as a Master’s Degree program in P-12 Educational Administration. The cohort model program features 10 courses and 6 credit hours of mentored internship experiences. With this grant, ISU is in its 3rd cohort of principal candidates. Candidates are recruited from nearby school districts and have a choice of doing the full-time/full-semester internship in District #87 or the traditional internship in another school outside of District #87.

Internship Competency Checklist
This Checklist demonstrates how Illinois State University was able to put together in a one-page document the internship assessment requirements for Interns in the IL-PART partnership with the Bloomington School District.  Clearly delineated are the state, ISLLC, and SREB required assessments in a checklist form.

Sample MOU for University and District Partnerships

Supervisor Meeting Notes

Revised Manual

Mentor Certification Form
Illinois State University created the Mentor Certification Form in order to have assurances that the mentor principal of intern candidates met all the state mandated requirements to be a mentor principal. The school district has all the documentation that would be applicable to whether or not the mentor principal would meet the state requirements; therefore, it is only reasonable to ask the district superintendent to certify the mentor principal.  The form clearly spells out the requirements necessary to be a mentor principal.

Mentor Intern Meeting Notes Form
This tool was designed to give documentation and guidance to the program’s weekly required meeting of the mentor and the intern during the internship. By providing a planning tool such as this, the weekly meetings will have a chance to be productive and beneficial to both the intern candidate and the mentor principal.  By suggesting mentor preparation topics and then discussion guide topics makes planning for the meeting much more focused and applicable. Additionally, by writing down the items discussed and agreed upon, there is a better chance that they will be completed versus being forgotten or misplaced.

Mentor Principal Planning Guide Form Blank
The Mentor Principal Planning Guide is a tool for use by the mentor principal to help in keeping track of and planning for the numerous internship activities of the intern. There can be well over 50+ activities associated with the internship required assessments.  This planning guide is a simple tool to use in keeping track of those activities.