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2024 Start Right Course for Beginning School Leaders

July 2-5, 2024


General Information

The College of Alberta School Superintendents’ 26th Annual Start Right Program for newly appointed school principals, assistant/vice-principals, and aspiring leaders will feature the Alberta Leadership Quality Standard (LQS) that states:

Quality leadership occurs when the leader’s ongoing analysis of the context, and decisions about what leadership knowledge and abilities to apply, result in quality teaching and optimum learning for all school students.
Alberta Education Ministerial Order #002/2020

Program Features

The Start Right course is designed to bring participants together as a leadership learning community with a focus on providing opportunities for:

  • Exploring and experiencing the Leadership Quality Standard competencies;
  • Reflecting, sharing ideas and building on school leadership experiences and best practices;
  • Gaining new ideas and resources through engaging presentations and interactive learning activities facilitated by educational leaders with a wealth of school and school system experience;
  • Meaningfully addressing issues and challenges encountered by school leaders and developing practical strategies for action;
  • Networking with colleagues from other school jurisdictions;
  • Establishing through participation in cohorts a forum for building relationships, learning with and from each other, and an opportunity for continuing to offer support and assistance as an extension of the workshop learning experience;
  • Extending the learning experience through university graduate coursework, if desired;
  • Enhancing a personal understanding and approach to educational leadership and practice profile;
  • Further developing a vision for successful school leadership; and
  • Providing practical support for the 2023-2024 school year through email advice and articles.

Arrangements can be made to extend the Start Right 2024 learning experience for graduate level course credit. Participants will be required to pay a tuition fee to the university and to meet additional course requirements. More information can be obtained on the University Graduate Coursework tab. For any other inquiries, contact Colleen Symyrozum-Watt at 587 879-7026 or symwatt.colleen@gmail.com.

Program Overview & Schedule

Coming soon…

Session Descriptions, Bios & Resources

Hosted by:
Colleen Symyrozum-Watt
is a CASS Leadership Consultant. With over three decades of experience in the education sector, she has held a variety of roles including classroom teacher, elementary school principal, division consultant, director of learning, deputy superintendent, and superintendent.

Before joining CASS as a Leadership Consultant in 2017, Colleen worked for Alberta Education and served on numerous provincial committees, as well as the CASS zone and provincial executive. In addition to her work in the education sector, Colleen has also completed executive coaching through Royal Roads University. Throughout her career, she has shown a commitment to improving educational outcomes for students and a passion for leadership development.


Olds College Information

PDF  Campus Map

Participants will stay in the residences at Centennial Village! Each room is furnished with a double bed, desk plus chair, closet with shelving, a night stand, and private bath. All units are non-smoking. Free parking is available. For more information, click here.

Participants will be provided with a cafeteria meal ticket for daily breakfast and lunch, with one banquet dinner as scheduled. Breakfast will be served from 7:00 a.m. to 8:15 a.m. and lunch from 12:00 noon to 1:00 p.m. Refreshments will be available during session breaks.

Location of Sessions
All sessions will be held on the beautiful Olds College Campus.  Smoking is not permitted inside the Centre or any other building on campus.

University Graduate Coursework

University Credit: Arrangements have been made to offer graduate coursework for participants who are interested in extending the Start Right 2024 short course learning experience. If you are interested in pursuing this option, you will be required to register with the university and pay a tuition fee.

Registration coming soon...

The annual Start Right Program offers successful, content-rich sessions that build upon the experiences of all our participants. If you are a repeat attendee, please take note that some sessions will be repeated from previous years due to their success and continued relevance. We value the unique experiences that returning participants bring and look forward to their insights to the discussions.


Deepening the understanding and applying the learning to support implementation of professional practice in newly appointed or aspiring school leaders.


July 2 - 5, 2024


Olds College, 4500 50 Street, Olds