School Leadership for Students With Disabilities

Through this Course Enhancement Module (CEM), participants will learn about school leadership that supports the learning of students with disabilities within effective inclusive schools so that they have opportunities to achieve positive life outcomes. The CEM addresses varied dimensions of school and collaborative leadership necessary to foster collective responsibility for students with disabilities, including partnerships with parents and families. In addition, the CEM addresses the role of district leaders in supporting effective instruction for students with disabilities.


This CEM is designed to build the knowledge and capacity of educators in the selected topic. The module includes a compilation of resources that can be adapted and is flexible to accommodate faculty and professional development (PD) provider needs. The anchor presentation and speaker notes can be used in their entirety to cover multiple class sessions or PD sessions. Alternatively, specific content, activities, and handouts can be used individually to enhance existing course and/or PD content.


After completing this CEM, users will be able to:

  1. Provide an overview of key dimensions of leadership important to creating inclusive schools that support the learning of students with disabilities so that they can achieve positive life outcomes and the relationship of these dimensions to Professional Standards for Education Leaders (PSEL, 2015).
  2. Describe inclusive schools and why they are important.
  3. Identify the specific roles of principals in developing effective inclusive schools.
  4. Identify key dimensions of instructional leadership and principal activities in creating environments that support teacher growth and effectiveness and student learning.
  5. Describe key leadership practices that help promote and sustain a collaborative culture, achieving collective responsibility for the education of students with disabilities.
  6. Identify behaviors that facilitate positive and successful parent/family and school partnerships that support student learning.
  7. Describe the important role of district leadership in helping school leaders improve instruction for students with disabilities in their schools.