Blue Seats Leadership
Connie Casson, BA, MBA – Connie Casson founded Blue Seats Consulting in 2013 to bring experience in strategic planning, organizational analysis and design, and performance management skills to help school districts, charter management organizations, and partners in improving outcomes for public school students. Specifically, Connie and her team can help with accountability systems, human capital strategy, data capture & presentation, and teacher effectiveness systems.
Until 2013, Connie led the Accountability, Research, and Evaluation group as its Executive Director at Denver Public Schools. For three years, she led a team of thirty-five researchers, analysts, trainers, and warehouse workers to measure, capture, present and interpret student-, school-, and district-level results. Prior to that role, she was a grant writer and project manager focused on performance management at Denver Public Schools.
Casson entered public education through the Broad Residency in Public Education, a two-year program during which she worked and learned at Fort Wayne (Indiana) Community Schools. She began her career in process and strategic consulting with Accenture, where she assisted financial services, pharmaceutical, and retail clients in making their operations run more efficiently
Casson received a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from the University of Notre Dame, where she was a Notre Dame Scholar and graduated with honors. She received an MBA degree from The University of Texas at Austin where she received the peer-nominated Leadership and Service Award. She has also done professional development at the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia and the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.
“I am motivated to help schools improve because I believe education is the best chance we have to improve our station and to create a life of accomplishment, service, and fun.”
What are blue seats? What is the name about?
The school accountability system in Denver Public Schools is the School Performance Framework. In this multi-measured index, schools are measured on student growth, status, and post-secondary readiness, and they receive an annual rating from Distinguished, color-coded blue, to Accredited on Probation, color-coded red, with green, yellow, and orange codes between the highest- and lowest-rated schools.
The goal of the reforms team pursued in Denver was to improve the schools through changes in student expectations, in human capital strategies, in budgeting structures, and in governance. The team wanted to have more schools rated blue, and more seats for more students in schools rated blue. So, for all the ideas implemented and hard work done, the goal was to have more blue seats.
Connie’s goal in helping education organizations is to have more seats for all students in great schools. With more blue seats, more students have a chance at a great education, and on having real freedom to choose how they want their life to be. Blue Seats isn’t about politics, but it is about freedom.
Blue Seats Consulting has worked with leading districts and foundations in American K12 education. The work has been developing and implementing strategic plans and related to accountability systems, strategies to increase innovation, and human capital systems.
Our dream clients are those with a goal to achieve (that may look like a problem to solve or a question to answer), a sponsor for change, an interest in sharing knowledge, and a funding source that will enable Blue Seats Consulting to help the organization accelerate progress toward the goal.