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Business chiefs take turns as school leaders

Students at World of Inquiry School No. 58 and East High School in the Rochester City School District were visited Thursday by their superintendent—both of them.

Antonio Perez, Eastman Kodak Co. chairman and CEO, became superintendent for a day as part of a RCSD program to bring together leaders from the business world to help improve city schools.

Perez joined Jean-Claude Brizard, RSCD superintendent of schools, for the visit Thursday morning.

The Rochester PENCIL Partnership Program, which began last year, builds relationships between business leaders and principals to inspire innovative solutions to the challenges facing Rochester’s schools. PENCIL stands for Public Education Needs Civic Involvement for Learning.

Leaders from 80 companies joined with school principals to share insights, skills and expertise to support students, Brizard said.

Participants joined their schools Thursday to become principals for a day.

“These partners work closely with our principals to determine challenges specific to their schools and to develop strategies for meeting those challenges,” he said. “They are making a meaningful difference in the work being done in our schools to help students achieve.”

Throughout the morning, business partners shadowed school principals and experienced a typical day in the life of a school principal as they gained an understanding of the school’s strengths and challenges. The actual school principals and their partners from local businesses joined later for a luncheon and presentation at the Hyatt Regency Downtown. Perez was to speak at the luncheon.

Throughout the year, the principals and their business partners set goals and work together to address goals like developing strong leaders, building school capacity and enhancing the learning experience for students.

(c) 2009 Rochester Business Journal. Obtain permission to reprint this article.


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