Successfully Changing Administrative Positions (online)

Magnum Trainings:  Career Transition Workshop


Successfully Changing Administrative Positions (online)


Schedule, Registration, and Payment [HERE]
Two 2-hour sessions, on non-consecutive days, via ZOOM with video

Each year hundreds of educators accept positions as a first-time administrator or move to a new administrative position, moving up from within or moving to a new district. This issues-focused workshop will review the dynamics of culture change, with an emphasis on the skills, knowledge, feelings, and strategies needed for successful transition to a new administrative position. 

This online workshop is for the first time administrator or moving to a new administrative position – Assistant Superintendent, School Business Official, Building Principal or Assistant Principal, Director, Department Chair, or other administrators – either moving up inside or changing districts

About This Workshop  (2 Sessions)
Session 1 with Dr. Sue Gray is about leaving your prior position and moving to a new administrative position. As a first-time administrator or entering a new position, in your current district or moving to another district, you will experience the challenges of culture change. These challenges and dynamics are well understood in the profession, but not always reviewed with the incoming administrator. Each level of building and district administration has different and similar characteristics and dynamics. Discussed will be common leadership good first steps as well as mistakes made at the beginning of a new job. Dr. Gray will discuss how a new administrator represents change, relationship dynamics, building trust in your team, and handling pressure. Addressed will be the sources of support available to the new administrator both within the district and through professional contacts and organizations.
Session 2 with Dr. Suzanne McLeod is about effective administration of budgets as part of an administrative team. Leadership at all levels of administration (building, program, and district-office) requires administration of budgets worth tens of thousands of dollars. Specific budgeting and fiscal management responsibilities shift as administrators move to building leadership to district leadership positions. This session examines the elements of fiscal responsibility at all administrative levels, including fiscal teamwork as decision-making is integrated within the context of the Superintendent’s leadership. Dr. McLeod will address specifics regarding budget development, requisitions, costing, working with the district’s Purchasing Agent, receipts, authorizations for payment, claims auditing, and payments. Budget calendar cycles, management recommendations, and grant management will also be presented. This workshop includes practical guidance to transitioning administrators seeking to understand fiscal leadership.

Susan Gray, Ph.D.
, Superintendent of Schools (retired), Clinical Psychologist, Ethicist, Culturalist, Playwright
Dr. Sue Gray is an astute observer of administrator interactions and the sub-cultures that guide school district organizations. She understands the school and district office environments. Professionally she has worked with personnel in school districts, hospitals, social services and law enforcement. Sue served as the superintendent of schools in the Penfield and Hornell school districts. She started her school administration in special education and school psychology and has worked as a principal and assistant superintendent of instruction. Dr. Gray is also a licensed clinical psychologist. Dr. Gray earned her undergraduate degree in Psychology and French from the College of Wooster; her doctorate in Educational Psychology from Penn State University; her School Psychologist certification from Alfred University, and her Educational Administration certification from St. Bonaventure University. Before moving to public education administration she was a professor at CCNY, teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in the school of education.
Currently Dr. Gray consults, teaches and facilitates workshops in New York State on school and district culture, ethics in administration and school business, emotional IQ and other topics. She also has a private practice in psychology, specializing in crisis therapy.
   Suzanne McLeod, Ed.D., Superintendent of Schools (retired) and Assistant Professor
Dr. Suzanne McLeod served as Superintendent of the Union Endicott Central Schools for eleven years (2008-2019). Immediately prior to her superintendency, Suzanne served as an Assistant Superintendent for Business, and again prior, as a Curriculum Director. These administrative experiences provided her with insights into program budgeting and control strategies available to decision makers. Combining her observations and discussions with fellow superintendents and business officials, she has formulated strategies to address fiscal challenges. During these difficult budgeting times these strategies are of high value to all program managers.
Dr. McLeod is currently an Assistant Professor and Coordinator of the Educational Leadership Program at Binghamton University (SUNY). Her college teaching includes education courses at Hofstra University, Broome Community College, SUNY Oswego, and Binghamton University. Dr. McLeod has authored professional articles on trust, home schooling, and bullying. She wrote A Principal’s Guide to No Child Left Behind, and teaches workshops to aspiring leaders.

Dr. Jim Merrins is Executive Program Administrator of Educational Support Services. He hosts and administers numerous statewide webinars and workshops for superintendents and experienced school administrators, including the Transition to Superintendency Program, Fiscal Navigation for Superintendents, and the Aspiring Superintendents Webinars. The School District Negotiator,and Claims Auditor Training. Jim has more than 40 years experience in school administration, including 16 years as a Superintendent in Fredonia and Honeoye, New York. Dr. Merrins is NYS certified as a School District Administrator and School Business Administrator. Dr. Merrins taught school finance and school law at SUNY colleges for several years.

The cost of these two half-day online workshops is $225 per participant.

Each workshop participant will receive workshop-related materials.

Hosted and administered by ESS
James M. Merrins, Ed.D., Executive Program Administrator

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Contact James Merrins, Ed.D.
Comments, corrections, source documents, and questions welcome
Educational Support Services
42 Rosalyn Court, Fredonia, New York 14063
(716) 672-5473, FAX (716) 672-5472,