Center on System Leadership

System Design Benchmarking

System Design Benchmarking (SDB) provides superintendents and their district leadership teams a shared understanding of what makes top-performing systems successful—how they are structured, designed and function. The SDB lays the groundwork that will enable district leadership teams to redesign their district as a cohesive education system in which each component supports and enhances the other. Equally important, it creates a shared learning environment for the district’s administrators that builds urgency and creates a common vision and language to undertake the work necessary to dramatically improve student performance at scale. Each facilitation is tailored so that the experience is specifically relevant to each district’s unique context.


The SDB is delivered over the course of approximately four months in three two-day sessions, each about five to eight weeks apart. Cohorts are made up of district leaders, including the superintendent, district administrators, board members and principals, with a minimum cohort of 20 participants and a maximum of 30 participants.

NCEE's System Design Benchmarking is helping our leadership team build a shared vision of what it will take to make Leland School District the highest-performance system possible.

– Jessie King, Superintendent, Leland School District

Questions? Next Steps?

Learn how NCEE can support your district.

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