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Transformative Principal is 

Dec 19, 2020

Maureen O’Shaughnessy, EdD, is a career school innovator with over 30 years of transforming learning in schools to better serve all students.
She is the founding director of Leadership Preparatory Academy, a nonprofit progressive micro-school in Washington State. With a master’s degree in educational administration and a doctorate degree in educational leadership, she has an extensive understanding of the components needed to transform the education system.
Her book, Creating Micro-Schools for Colorful Mismatched Kids: A Step-by-Step Process that Empowers Frustrated Parents to Innovate Education, includes a step-by-step process for how to start a micro-school of your own.
She also has a podcast called Education Revolution.

  • Always worked to find new ways of supporting kids.
  • Overseas work in Kuwait and Ecuador.
  • A school that could meet each student where they are.
  • Independent school with sliding scale tuition.
  • Use alternative learning laws.
  • If you know something, we move you on.
  • Competency based.
  • Geared towards students thriving.
  • Don’t have incentives to change it.
  • We have to have a reason to make changes.
  • The system was more important than the human.
  • We’re part of the inhumane system.
  • We need to examine our hearts, and what am I going to do to buck the system?
  • We need to gently examine ourselves.
  • It’s hard and uncomfortable.
  • Agency is everything for teachers and students.
  • When we let people go with their passions, they work so much harder!
  • Let go of control.
  • Let the trailblazers lead the way.
  • Sometimes kids learn so much more from seeing their teachers fail.

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  • Microschool is just a small school. Could be like your school.
  • The local school district
  • Many choice schools within the district.
  • There’s a need and a desire for specific schools.
  • Many schools have a school within a school.
  • We have this sense of entitlement that they have to get it all done in my class.
  • Kids can do an 1/8 of a credit.
  • If we can look at other ways for finding success.
  • Start looking at the teachers and rethink how we get credit.
  • Start with those that get it.
  • How to protect teachers who are sticking their heads above the rest.
  • Support those teachers and build support around them.
  • When we highlight the problem, we offer a solution.
  • Parents are a valued stakeholder.
  • Have clearly delineated roles for who is doing what!
  • Listen and think, how can we serve this population?
  • Tap into that passion!
  • How to be a transformative principal? Put reflection and personal growth in your calendar.



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John Catt

Today’s Transformative Principal sponsor, John Catt Educational, amplifies world-class voices on timeless topics, with a list of authors recognized globally for their fresh perspectives and proven strategies to drive success in modern schools and classrooms.

John Catt’s mission is to support high-quality teaching and learning by ensuring every educator has access to professional development materials that are research-based, practical, and focused on the key topics proven essential in today’s and tomorrow’s schools.

Learn more about professional development publications that are easy to implement for your entire faculty, and are both quickly digestible and rigorous, by visiting
Learn more about some of the newest titles:

John Catt is also proud publisher of the new book from Transformative Principal host Jethro Jones: SchoolX: How principals can design a transformative school experience for students, teachers, parents – and themselves
Visit this page to learn more about bulk orders and how to bring John Catt’s research-based materials to your school: