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James Schott


Distinguished Professor of Practice, Educational Leadership

Programs/Classes Taught:

Doctoral-level courses: Policy and Politics, Principles of Leadership, Leading Change, School Financial Management, and doctoral internships

Jim’s title reflects his extensive teaching and leading experiences in both the public and private sectors and his capacity to incorporate both theory and practice in ways that bring meaning and relevancy to courses in educational leadership.  He believes in drawing out of students what they already know and having them utilize their special knowledge and enabling capacities to enhance their continuous learning. In his classes, Jim facilitates learning through individual student online work and related in class group discussions and reports.  He strives to create a collaborative learning environment—one where the students and the professor share ideas and educate one another.  In addition to his teaching, Jim also works with his Florida colleagues in developing district partnerships and furthering those relationships.  He also helps develop syllabi, agendas, and instructional materials for selected doctoral courses.  Active in University governance, Jim recently completed a term as a member of NLU’s faculty Senate.

Areas of Expertise:

Principles of leadership, staff engagement, technical and adaptive change strategies, fundamentals of school finance and strategic budgeting, and public policy development and implementation.


Jim Schott sees himself as a teacher first and considers teaching one of the most important leadership enabling capacities one can possess.  He serves as a Distinguished Professor of Practice in the National College of Education’s Educational Leadership Program at the Tampa-Orlando Campus.   Teaching is his first love and he decided some 25 years ago to join NLU because of its commitment to educating both future teachers and school leaders.  He also was impressed by its mission of social justice as expressed through its conscious aim to reach out to serve larger numbers of minority students and more effectively address the issue of diversity throughout its courses. 

At NLU he regularly draws on his extensive professional experiences to bring a sense of the real world to his classes.   These include serving as Superintendent of the Orange County Public Schools in Orlando, Florida for nearly 13 years with prior service as Deputy Superintendent of Instruction.  He is a former Latin and English teacher and high school coach, and director of studies in Indianapolis. He also served as a high school principal in Oak Ridge, Tennessee and an Assistant Superintendent for Business Services and Community Relations as well as Curriculum and Instruction in Upper Arlington, Ohio. 

He has been very active in serving his profession and community.  He is past president and life member of the Florida Association of District Superintendents.  He was also President of the Large City School Superintendents’ organization that included the fifty largest school districts in the United States and Canada.  He was a Governor appointed member of the Florida Council on Educational Management and served as a member and officer for the Boards of Directors of the Orange County and State of Florida PTA’s.  He is a former board member of the Central Florida Chamber of Commerce, Junior Achievement, and the United Way of Central Florida.  He also was a volunteer “baby rocker and feeder” for the Arnold Palmer’s Children’s hospital in Orlando, Florida.

After he left his superintendent position, he decided to “do something new and different every 3 to 5 years until age 100.” To that end, he became President and Trustee of United Arts of Central Florida helping lead and fund several arts organizations and a science center.    He then became a regional president of a developing after school and summer learning adventure company, Voyager Expanded Learning.  He even started his own consulting company, Creative Education Solutions.  He became a consultant to School Link Technologies and helped it transform itself from a food services software company to a private food services software and operational development company and served as a member of its Board of Directors. He next served as president of a special business and school STEM partnership, non-profit organization in Central Florida working with ten school districts and later became its volunteer president.  He also was a volunteer and helped develop a Junior Achievement of Central Florida’s Leadership and Entrepreneurship Academy for grades 9 through 12 – a special partnership with the Orange County Public Schools in Orlando, Florida.   

Over the years, he has given numerous speeches both in Florida and throughout the country and served as a master of ceremonies in Central Florida for a variety of organizations and causes. He has written a variety of professional and personal articles focusing on educational interests.  His work has not gone unnoticed as he received the Donald A. Fleming Distinguished Alumni Award for Professional Achievement in 2006 from Marian University in Indianapolis, Indiana.  He also was awarded the Henry Cragg Volunteer Award in 2007 from Junior Achievement of Central Florida for “exceptional service.”  Just recently he was nominated for the Orange County Public Schools’ Hall of Fame.


B.A. in Latin with minors in English and Philosophy from Marian University, Indianapolis, Indiana
M.S. in Secondary School Administrators from Butler University, Indianapolis, Indiana
Ph.D. in Educational Administration and Leadership from Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana 

He participated in two national internships programs – the National Association of Secondary Principal’s program for change agents and the American Association of School Administrators’ National Academy for School Educators.  He also attended three Harvard University’s Summer Programs for selected superintendents of schools to study a variety of disciplines outside the field of education, including political science and art and architecture.

Research and Interests:

Educational Leadership and Change, Public Policy, Curriculum and Instruction

Contact Information:

NLU Florida Regional Campus
1207 Waterwitch Cove Circle
Orlando, FL  32806
(407) 251-8001


    NLU’s Chicago campus on South Michigan Avenue occupies five floors of the historic Peoples Gas Building. This landmark building, across the street from the Art Institute of Chicago and Grant Park, is easily accessible by train, bus and car and is surrounded by restaurants, parking lots/garages and shops.

    122 S. Michigan Avenue
    Chicago, IL 60603
    (888) 658.8632
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    Conveniently located in a fast-growing business district off I-90 and Route 31, NLU Elgin features 10 classrooms with high-tech media equipment; a computer lab with high-speed Internet access; two conference rooms; and comfortable student lounges. Parking is free at this recently remodeled and upgraded teaching site, which now includes wireless Internet access.

    620 Tollgate Road
    Elgin, IL 60123
    (888) 658.8632
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    Opened in the summer of 2006, NLU North Shore at Skokie is a state-of-the-art modern campus located just off the Edens Expressway near the Old Orchard Shopping Center. The campus includes 44 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a walk-in lab in the library; six conference rooms; a public café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; and multiple, comfortable student lounge areas.

    5202 Old Orchard Road
    Skokie, IL 60077
    (888) 658.8632
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    Located just minutes from the East-West Tollway (I-88), NLU Lisle features 42 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a separate walk-in lab in the library; a café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; conference rooms; and six comfortable student lounge areas with wireless access.

    850 Warrenville Road
    Lisle, IL 60532
    (888) 658.8632
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    Located in one of Chicago's major northwest suburbs, the newly renovated NLU Wheeling includes 20 classrooms with high-tech media equipment, four conference rooms, four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, large student lounge areas with wireless capabilities and interactive video capabilities, and an extensive research library. The site also houses the university library research collection.

    1000 Capitol Drive
    Wheeling, IL 60090
    (888) 658.8632
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    Established in 1988 and located in one of Tampa's major business districts, NLU's Florida Regional Center serves students in 13 counties in central Florida. In addition to its classrooms, the National Louis University Tampa Regional Center features a computer lab, student lounges, and conference room.

    5110 Sunforest Drive, Suite 102
    Tampa, FL 33634
    (800) 366.6581
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