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KIPP Leadership Design Fellowship

Made possible by the federal i3 funding and matching partner grants beginning in 2012, KIPP offers the KIPP Leadership Design Fellowship (KLDF), which is an eight-month program designed for administrators of public school districts, charter school systems, and leadership training organizations to provide intensive, experiential, and collaborative training on KIPP’s school leader development model.

Round Table KIPP School Leadership Design Fellowship

KLDF participants get an in-depth look at KIPP’s school leader selection, development, and ongoing support model, explore a variety of other innovative school leadership development approaches from around the country, and join a cohort of reform-minded education leaders through three interactive summits held over a multi-day period.


KLDF is designed to:

Share KIPP’s leadership practices
In-person summits are deliberately scheduled to coincide with national KIPP events, ensuring that the Fellows not just hear what KIPP does, but see programs in action.

Model what KIPP teaches
Taught by KIPP’s own instructors, KLDF sessions demonstrate the high quality, engaging, adult learning that KIPP incorporates into all of its principal training programs.

Forge a community of like-minded leaders among KLDF fellows
The structure of KLDF aims to replicate the cohort-based learning model that KIPP utilizes in its other leadership training programs in order to encourage fellows to build lasting relationships with each other—creating an expanded network of like-minded leaders.


Participants and fellowship schedules 

Leaders from 40 organizations (districts, CMOs, and talent organizations) serving over 4.3 million children have participated in the program to-date. 

Cohort One  |  Cohort Two  


Brainstorm KIPP School Leadership Design Fellowship“This is an extraordinary professional development experience and systems should send leaders with decision-making authority to enhance their leadership development programs.”
– Paul Miller, Los Angeles Unified School District

“You took a very traditional retired superintendent and opened his eyes to KIPP and a new way to do things that work.” 
– Mark Mitchell, Winthrop University 

“Developing highly effective leaders is such an important strategy in impacting student success. This program really allowed us to explore leadership and what it means. The work done here will definitely impact my work ahead. Thank you so much for the opportunity to be a fellow.” 
– Kimiko Cartwright, Austin Independent School District 


Participant Details

Ideal Candidates

KIPP looks for reform-minded districts, charter management organizations (CMOs), and leadership training organizations that want to improve the selection, training, and development of their principals. Two representatives from the organization should have the:

  • Capacity to impact and influence their organization’s current principal hiring and training programs
  • Willingness and ability to share effective practices from their current organization
  • Desire to work hard and contribute to a close-knit community of practice
  • Belief that closing the achievement gap is possible though transformative school leadership
  • Commitment and organizational support to attend all three summits



Tuition, travel, lodging, food, and all summit materials are paid for by the KIPP Foundation. In 2010, KIPP was awarded the Investing in Innovation (i3) Fund, a federal grant that allows KIPP to train more leaders, increase the size of the network at a faster rate, and share effective practices with other schools and networks, which benefit a significantly higher number of students. The KIPP Leadership Design Fellowship is made possible by federal i3 funding and matching partner grants.



The application process for Cohort Three (which will take place in March through October of 2015) will open in the summer of 2014. Please check back then for details on how to apply. In the meantime, if you have questions about participation or would like to get on our mailing list for the application process, please email


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