User Guide

Areas of Focus

Board Profile

Case Studies


Resources & Research

Videos & Interviews

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Building Great Leaders to Build Great Education


The Ontario Institute for Education Leadership (IEL) in partnership with the Council of Directors of Education (CODE) and the Ministry of Education commissioned Dr. Ken Leithwood to explore and articulate qualities and conditions that research has shown create successful school districts. The pursuit of promising leadership best practices that contribute to the learning and well-being of all children and youth is the fundamental role of senior leaders and Directors of Education in the province of Ontario. With this in mind, the Ontario Institute for Education Leadership (IEL) and the Council of Directors of Education (CODE) commissioned Dr. Ken Leithwood to conduct further research that focused on the role of districts and their leaders.

This section of the IEL website provides a platform for senior district leaders to share their district leadership projects. It offers a venue for sharing promising practices and authentic examples of how school districts are developing, monitoring and implementing strategies related to the nine characteristics of strong districts. As the project evolves, this website will provide a vehicle for districts to showcase the leadership practices that they are making an impact on, the learning and well-being of the students in their district and ultimately of all students in the province.

Summary of Resources

The list below provides an at-a-glance summary of the resources available to district teams on this site:

  • User Guide
  • Areas of Focus
  • Profile of Participating Boards
  • Case Studies and Guidelines
  • Modules
  • Resources and Research
  • Videos and Interviews


The IEL would like to thank Dr. Ken Leithwood, Ms. Catherine McCullough and the following districts for their participation in the Strong Districts and Their Leadership Project: Algoma DSB, Brant Haldimand Norfolk Catholic DSB, Conseil des écoles catholiques du Centre Est, Conseil des écoles publiques de l’Est de l’Ontario, Peel Catholic DSB, Durham Catholic DSB, Durham DSB, Halton DSB, Huron Perth Catholic DSB, Hamilton Wentworth Catholic DSB, Hamilton Wentworth DSB, Ottawa Catholic DSB, Niagara Catholic Distirct School Board, Nipissing Parry Sound Catholic DSB, Rainbow DSB, Sudbury Catholic DSB, Superior Greenstone DSB, Surrey School District, Thames Valley DSB, Waterloo Region DSB, Waterloo Catholic DSB, York Catholic DSB, and York Region DSB.