The Syracuse Aspiring Leaders Academy (SALA)

We are excited to announce the continuation of the Syracuse City School District’s program to develop the next generation of transformational school leaders. The Syracuse Aspiring Leaders Academy (SALA) will build the capacity of future principals to lead their schools to increased achievement levels for all students.   We must be committed to invest today in the growth of the leaders of tomorrow.  Our students deserve nothing less.
We all recognize that the school leader is one of the most important factors in the success of a school.   The leader drives achievement through many modes: modeling best practices, creating a climate of accountability and strategic action, guiding staff to high levels of performance, and engaging parents and the community in a shared vision of student success.
Academy participants will be carefully selected from among our district’s motivated and successful leaders and pre-leaders. To apply, you must hold a New York State building or district administrator certificate, or you must currently be enrolled in a university program that leads to administrator certification.  In order to be considered for SALA, you must also complete the electronic application (link below) and have two recommendations submitted on your behalf no later than Friday, September 21, 2018.  Interviews will be held September 24-28, 2018. 

With a personalized individual learning plan for each participant, the Academy will provide mentoring by exceptional building-level leaders, classroom instruction, and on-the-job activities. Through these program components, participants will build and strengthen the core competencies required for successful school leadership, covering both instructional and organizational leadership.

We expect that Academy graduates will develop the critical skills, resilience and determination to take on the challenges of an ever-changing environment and produce gains in student achievement.   They will be well-prepared to excel in the role of a building or district leader.  
This is part of a long-term commitment to develop outstanding Syracuse leaders for future generations of our students.   With the strength of highly effective leaders in our schools, our students will have the greatest opportunity for success.

You are invited to apply for the 2018-2019 SALA (Syracuse Aspiring Leaders Academy) Cohort 5.  If you would like to learn more about SALA, please call 315-399-3663or email

Although this leadership development program is strongly encouraged, it does not ensure promotions.

"Participating in the Syracuse Aspiring Leaders Academy equipped me with the essential knowledge and skills to take my administrative career to the next level.  I know today, more than ever before, that our work is all about  "People".  Our leadership role needs to be focused on building a solid and trusting relationship with the individuals we see on a day-to-day basis, whether that be with out staff or students.  Our drive and determination should be on inspiring and influencing others to be better than they ever dreamed they could be!  SALA allowed me to sift through my "cages" to retrieve what matters most -- a relentless drive to do what's best for our students!"

Diane Vitello, Cohort 5, 2016-17




SALA will be held on the following dates and applicants should plan to attend all sessions if applying:

October 27, 2018
December 1, 2018
January 26, 2019
March 2, 2019
April 6, 2019
May 4, 2019
June 8, 2019