Paul Adler

Director, Leadership Development

As Director of Leadership Development, Paul Adler provides continued high-impact, mission-driven Follow-on Support to BES leaders and BES schools in their planning year and first two years of operation, and works with BES Fellows during their training year. Paul served for six years as the founding Principal of Achievement First Brooklyn High School. He led the first three graduating classes to college readiness, with all students being accepted to four-year colleges, and he led the school to be ranked in the top third of 29 schools in the Achievement First network for academic performance. Previous to Paul’s work as Principal with Achievement First, he was a Teach For America Corps member, teaching seventh grade math in Compton, CA. Paul received an M.A. in Educational Leadership from Teachers College Columbia University, an M.A.T. in Mathematics Education from Harvard University, and a B.A. in Quantitative Economics from Tufts University.

I came to this work to help new and emerging leaders actualize their visions for schools that will serve historically marginalized children. It is relatively easy to write a lofty mission statement and to create a plan on paper for a great school, but it is an entirely different endeavor to make the vision come alive on the ground. Coaching has allowed me to provide new leaders with realistic practice on what it actually takes to run a high functioning school in a high poverty neighborhood. This work has helped leaders be self-aware of their tendencies, strengths, and weaknesses, as they develop their leadership voice and increasingly close the gap between their vision and reality in the school. There is nothing that is more rewarding to me than seeing hundreds of young people learning exponentially more because of the reflection and learning of the school leader.