Lane shows her true colors as supt./principal
August 10, 2020
Most school administrators find themselves wearing several different hats throughout a school day or week, but none so notably as a superintendent/principal. It’s a position made all the more challenging by the unique adversities faced by a rural district, which can include closures due to snow and power shutoffs, declining enrollment, and the need to support families as they face hardships due to canceled or increasing fire insurance rates. As superintendent/principal of Pioneer Union School District in El Dorado County, Annette Lane’s responsibilities run from leading the implementation of assessment literacy and data-driven analysis to the mentoring and coaching of her instructional leadership staff. As a veteran educator and former teacher, Lane models learning, collaboration and clear communication, working to develop professionals in their practice and implementation of Improvement Science. “Annette Lane is a leader among leaders,” according to four of her fellow regional superintendents, Meg Enns, Marcy Guthrie, Natalie Miller and Cheryl Olson. “Working with colleagues in El Dorado County, in Superintendents’ Council and other venues, her thoughtful contributions are always grounded in what is best for students. She is a credible and valued voice on behalf of, and in support of, the many small school districts in the county and across the state with her firsthand experience of the challenges they face.” In addition to leading her schools and districts in LCAP planning, professional development, curriculum development and the implementation of new technology, Lane worked with stakeholders to secure a State Preschool grant so she could establish a Community Preschool, now an important and valuable community asset. She also worked with community leaders to organize and host the first and second annual South County Health and Safety Fair.  “As superintendent, Annette serves as the heart of her small district,” wrote County Superintendent of Schools Ed Manansala. “Her commitment and perseverance to provide the very best to her students, teachers, and educational leaders is evident in her practice every day.” What’s your favorite book on leadership? I was first introduced to the work of Michael Fullan and systems change early in my administrative career. I’ve since read all of his work, but the book that most resonates with me is “Coherence.”  When Fullan explains the Coherence Framework, he talks about focus coming alive through other elements and how it is shaped and reshaped by the interactive forces of collaboration, deep learning, and accountable actions. To me, this is the underpinning of capacity building and ownership, which are needed to effect systems change.  What’s your favorite quote about leadership? “Know thy impact!” I value the work that [John] Hattie has done to help educators focus their efforts to ensure actions taken have maximum impact on student learning.  What’s your best strategy for work/life balance? I’m fortunate to be married to someone who has been an educator for 35 years. My husband’s a compassionate educator with an empathetic ear, and always willing to celebrate success. We make sure we set aside time to travel and enjoy family and friends.  What are the top five life hacks that you would recommend for a new administrator? 1. Walk the campus often and take time to talk to students and staff. 2. Listen more than you talk. 3. Presume positive intent. 4. Delegate where you can. 5. Manage your school’s communication before it manages you. What are you most proud of accomplishing? When we decided to change our inclusion model a few years ago to more effectively address the needs of all students, our professional staff embraced the work and it’s had great results for our students.  Who is someone who inspires you? One of the first administrators I had the pleasure to work with was Dr. Karen Schauer in Galt Joint Elementary District. Dr. Schauer works hard to engage her community and that has resulted in many wonderful programs for students over the years including numerous Service Learning Projects throughout the community and Galt Horse Assisted Learning and Enrichment Program.  What was the best ACSA event you’ve attended? ACSA Leadership Summit: Every Student Succeeding Luncheon. How has ACSA supported you in your career/current position? I’ve participated in powerful, high energy ACSA Charters in Stanislaus County and El Dorado County. It has been a valuable networking experience. I also attended the Superintendents’ Academy with the late and great Dr. Bob Price. Bob had many years of experience and a lot of wisdom to share. What bucket list item do you hope to accomplish this year? I want to provide teachers with everything they need to deliver effective programs this year, no matter what classroom structure we have to transition to because of COVID-19, so our students and teachers engage in quality, effective teaching and learning. What has the impact of the COVID-19 worldwide health crisis taught you/how has it inspired you as an educator? COVID-19 has reminded me that change is hard, but when you have a collaborative culture you can get desired results through an effective iterative process.
ACSA’s 2020 Superintendent/Principal of the Year Annette Lane.
ACSA’s Superintendent/Principal of the Year Annette Lane not only leads her schools, she creates them: She secured a state preschool grant to establish a valuable and important new preschool for the community.
Name: Annette Lane
Award: Superintendent/Principal of the Year Title: Superintendent/Principal, Pioneer Union School District ACSA highlights: member since 2012; VPLA ACSA, El Dorado Charter, (2017-2019); ACSA Curriculum, Instruction & Assessment Council (2012-2015)
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