Elaine Liftin: Spearheads Florida’s Council for Educational Change
Written by Camila Cepero on July 25, 2017
As President and executive director of the statewide non-profit Council for Educational Change, Elaine Liftin has the job of embedding the organization’s mission throughout Florida: to focus on leadership to improve student achievement and address education issues.
Dr. Liftin said she provides leadership and direction for the council as well as creating relationships with the business community and seeking funding for the council.
Since its inception, the Council for Educational Change has created its two most prominent programs, the three-year-long Partnership to Advance School Success (PASS) program, now 95 schools statewide, where CEOs mentor principals and commit $100,000 for their school model, and the one-year abridged Executive PASS program, which forms partnerships between a business leader and a school principal in order to bring positive change to the school site.
The council’s 21-year impact includes $9 million invested in educational programs that have benefitted 219 schools, 233,400 students, 14,200 teachers and 600 school leaders. PASS alone has garnered $5.81 million in 35 grants that have impacted over 25,100 students, 1,600 teachers and 60 school leaders. Executive PASS has had 226 partners that have impacted over 174,300 students, 10,300 teachers and 420 school leaders in 150 schools.
Dr. Liftin’s first career choice was to be a singer. As a student, however, Dr. Liftin advanced quickly and ultimately graduated from high school at 15. She began teaching when she was 18 and has since taught at the first paired school in Brooklyn, been a school principal, and was a downtown administrator at Miami-Dade County Public Schools.
Through the council’s PASS program, Dr. Liftin said, teachers and school leaders learn from their business executive counterpart skills like motivation, delegation and performance appraisal.
A wife, mother, grandmother and now mother to a new puppy, Dr. Liftin enjoys traveling with her husband, a technically retired professor who can still be caught teaching at Broward College in his free time.
Miami Today reporter Camila Cepero interviewed Dr. Liftin in Doral.
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