Smyrna-Clayton Sun-TimesNew Tech Network awarded Patrick Gallucci, commandant of First State Military Academy, with the Susan Schilling Legacy Award for his leadership.The award was presented in St. Louis at the New Tech Annual Conference, where 1,400 teachers and education leaders from across the country and Australia convened.Gallucci has led First State Military Academy, located in Clayton, since January 2015. The academy is a public charter high school where cadets are members of the Marine Corps JROTC program. The academy serves a diverse student population and is the first military academy to partner with New Tech Network.Gallucci took on the challenge of hiring new teachers, creating a new school and implementing a new program with grit and perseverance.“We just welcomed our first graduating class. Each cadet that has been with the academy since 2015 was recognized as an official plank owner. A title to one of the planks from the original drill deck was presented as a reward for the efforts and diligence that laid the cornerstone for what is to become a highly regarded and successful part of education within the state of Delaware,” said Gallucci.The commandant preaches “culture over content” and stresses the value of distributive leadership. He has created a sustainable model by encouraging teachers to focus on leadership skills with a growth mindset and to be invested in the students they are teaching.“I believe that the New Tech Network model is synonymous with MCJROTC: leadership, collaboration, agency and problem-solving. I have successfully strived to form a single school culture between Marine instructors and teachers. One that promotes a growth mindset,” said Gallucci.The conference theme, “Power of Us” was a deep-dive into the idea that a connected network is essential to addressing the most complex challenges that schools face today. The conference theme was enhanced with the release of “Better Together: How to Leverage School Networks for Smarter Personalized and Project-Based Learning” a new book co-authored by NTN President and CEO Lydia Dobyns and Getting Smart CEO Tom Vander Ark.“Better Together” gives context to one of the modern era’s important educational innovations and provides strategies for collaborating in school networks to achieve the promise of personalized and project-based learning for all students. It also explores the challenges schools face when innovating in isolation“New Tech Network’s foundational belief is that schools get better by being part of a community. We think school networks hold the best potential for solving the most complex challenge we face today — closing the opportunity gap for all students, no matter where they live,” said Dobyns.

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