The Leadership and Innovation Program (LIP) is an intensive, six-week course to provide school principals with training on leadership, innovation, communication, and technology. It was developed by the Varkey Foundation (VF), a United Kingdom education nonprofit with offices in Argentina, Dubai, Ghana, and Uganda best known for its Global Teaching Prize. To date, LIP has reached 6,544 principals and teachers across 3,591 schools in the Provinces of Corrientes, Jujuy, Mendoza, and Salta in Argentina. The VF aims to reach 15,000 principals.
To participate, principals have to: (a) be tenured public officials (i.e., they cannot be interim or substitute principals); (b) not be close to the age of retirement; (c) not be the only teacher at their school; and (d) be able to take six weeks off regular duties to participate full-time. Principals may send a vice-principal on their behalf, and they may also invite a teacher.
The training course consists of six modules, each with four to seven sessions, including: (a) “educational leadership for organizational development and school reform” (i.e., how to build and empower teams); (b) “managing technology integration” (i.e., how to plan, manage, and sustain information technology systems); (c) “leading and managing learning, creativity, and curriculum innovation” (i.e., how to manage curriculum development); (d) “educational leadership for quality assurance and to improve performance in the teaching and learning process” (i.e., how to hold teachers accountable for effective instruction); (e) “leading teacher professional development” (i.e., how to identify strengths and areas for improvement); and (f) “leading and developing community relations” (i.e., how to develop links between the school and its surrounding community). In each module, participants complete readings, attend presentations, and engage in activities (e.g., developing a diagnostic of their school). Training facilitators assess participants at the end of each module and offer formative feedback. Participants are also expected to propose a “school innovation project” to improve their school.