Midlakes superintendent to lead center’s leadership outreach team Educational Leadership Mike Ford, superintendent of the Phelps-Clifton Springs Central School District (Midlakes), will join the Center for Professional Development and Education Reform at the Warner School this summer as director of leadership outreach. Ford, who will assist K-12 school districts with leadership coaching, strategic planning, and superintendent searches, has served as superintendent for the past 15 years. In March, he announced his plans to retire from Midlakes at the end of the 2013-14 school year. Ford’s retirement from Midlakes comes after 34 years as an educator at Wayne-Finger Lakes BOCES, where he worked on the professional development side, and in the Tuscarora (Mercersburg, Pa.), Fairport, Newark, and Phelps-Clifton Springs public school districts. During his tenure as Midlakes superintendent, Ford championed a number of efforts that have led to improved student performance, stabilized district finances, improved staff and administrative recruitment and retention, and the successful completion of a multi-million dollar capital project. “We are thrilled to have Mike join our team,” says Andrew Wall, co-interim director of the Center. “He brings a knowledge of and leadership experience in contemporary times, particularly around issues like Common Core standards and the Annual Professional Performance Review. Mike’s addition to our team continues to reflect the Warner School’s commitment to bringing research and practice together to meet the needs of school leaders, which is why Mike is such an asset to us.” The Center’s leadership outreach division is a resource and stimulus for school districts to grow and continue to improve. Leadership and organizational development activities consist of strategic planning, administrative coaching, superintendent searches, and school reorganization studies. Ford will continue to build on the success of the leadership activities currently performed by Stephen Uebbing, professor and former superintendent of the Canandaigua City School district, who will continue to work with K-12 school districts under the full-time leadership of Ford. "I am excited to join the Warner team in supporting the school leaders in our region,” says Ford. “The leadership demands have never been greater, and I am looking forward to being able to support their efforts." Ford is no stranger to the Warner School, having served on the faculty and taught courses in the K-12 school leadership program since 2008. Together with Uebbing, he is co-author of The Life Cycle of Leadership: Surviving and Thriving in Today’s Schools (Learning Forward, 2011), a book that aims to help administrators improve leadership skills and competencies in education. Along with his administrative and faculty duties, Ford currently serves as a national board member of the National Center for Education, Research, and Technology; chair of the Annual Professional Performance Review (APPR) task force of the New York State Council of School Superintendents; and is a past-president of the National Staff Development Council and the New York State Staff Development Council. A well-respected leader of superintendents, Ford was presented with the 2014 New York Council of School Superintendents (NYCSS) Appreciation Award at the Council’s Annual Winter Institute. He was honored for his dedication to education and his ongoing service to NYCSS programs. Ford holds a master’s and certificate of advanced study, both in educational administration, from the State University of New York at Brockport and a bachelor’s in secondary education speech and theatre from Bloomsburg State College.