Announcing the 2018 winner of the Susan Schilling Award

June 11, 2018

The 2018 Schilling Award winner is Patrick Gallucci-Commandant of First State Military Academy!  

The Schilling Award is presented annually to a New Tech director or principal who demonstrates exemplary leadership at both the school and network levels. These dynamic leaders are committed to ensuring equitable outcomes, and recognize that this is only possible in school communities that are highly reflective, collaborative, and laser-focused on the improvement of teaching and learning. These instructional leaders work tirelessly to cultivate and sustain systems and structures that support inquiry-based, transformational adult learning. As lead learners in their buildings, school communities, and within our network, these leaders are continuously honing their ability to recognize, diagnose and address the complex challenges that accompany change.

Patrick has led First State Military Academy since January of 2015. He took on the challenge of hiring new teachers, creating a new school and implementing a new program with grit and perseverance.  Patrick set out to bind together the leadership mindsets found in the MCJROTC & pedagogical tenets of PBL and quickly realized that the staff was crucial for school success. Many of the teachers were new to teaching and all were new to PBL. Three years later, First State Military has a 96% teacher retention rate, a fact that Gallucci is proud of. 

Serving a racially & culturally diverse student population in Southern DE, most students qualify for free and reduced lunch. The values that MCJROTC promote concerning leadership, collaboration, agency, & problem-solving are synonymous with those found in classrooms. While it took some time to mesh NTN & MCJROTC, Pat has successfully strived to form a single school culture between his Marine instructors and teachers.

Pat values distributive leadership, regularly telling his teaching team that it is their school. He has a keen eye towards sustainability and making sure the place will function long after he is no longer there.  His is that his teachers run the hiring process, a choice Pat made because he wants folks whom his team feels confident they can work with.

The commandant centers his team on culture. “Culture over content,” he preaches, and the need for his teachers to know their students & to focus on leadership habits & growth mindset. Additionally, he is always encouraging his teachers to take risks in their practice, a sentiment that carries with it a sense of security & purpose.