Bruce L. Mims received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley (1987); a Master of Education Degree in Teaching and Learning from the University of San Diego (2002); and, a Doctor of Education Degree in Leadership in Urban Education from the University of Southern California (2007). His (2007) dissertation is titled, "Social Capital, Institutional Agency, Minority and Low-Status Youth Empowerment, and AVID Implementation"; it is published by UMI and available in the USC Libraries electronic resource files.
Dr. Mims most recently served as Principal of Technology High School and Director of K12 Student Programs for the Cotati-Rohnert Park Unified School District; and, has been a secondary public school administrator with progressively increasing responsibilities for 9 years. He has successfully promoted and sustained high achievement and high performance in a small suburban (“10-10”) school, which includes attaining the 2013 California Distinguished School award--one of only two high schools in Sonoma County to receive the award. Dr. Mims has also successfully facilitated turnaround processes in low achieving and underperforming large urban and suburban schools and districts in Southern California as well.
Dr. Mims also has extensive experience teaching undergraduate and graduate level education courses; teaching in various adjunct professor of education capacities for nearly 11 years: having taught online courses, as well as courses on the ground at various locations throughout Los Angeles, San Diego, and Sonoma Counties; delivering quality, rigorous instruction to prepare the next generation of aspiring teachers and educational leaders with the ability to improve the quality of student-learning outcomes; as we endeavor to improve, reform, enhance, and enrich K-12 education for the betterment of students, teachers, and the greater school-wide learning communities that depict the constantly evolving dynamics of K12 public education.
His administrative leadership duties have ranged from facilitating transparency by promoting and sustaining Site Governance and innovative site-based budget (i.e., Per Pupil Funding) models, as well as Master Program overhauls; to overseeing discipline, guidance, safety, and security. He has also coached, supervised, evaluated and/or provided assistance and guidance plans for administrative, classified, and certificated (teaching) staff members who (all) belong to various collective bargaining units. Dr. Mims has also successfully facilitated (4) full and (2) interim WASC accreditation cycles--which includes recently attaining a full 6-year (unconditional) accreditation cycle for Technology High School. Importantly, he has successfully created and/or overhauled multiple Thematic Smaller Learning Community/Academy (SLC), Linked Learning Pathway Academy, California Partnership Academy, and STEM/Magnet implementations to align with CSU/UC A-G college readiness requirements; as well, as Career and Technical Education (CTE) career pathway specifications—when applicable.
The essence of Dr. Mims' educational philosophy centers on "The Five Es”: Excellence in Curriculum; Education as a Professional Learning Community; Environments that are Safe for Learning; Equity in Access for All Students; and, Engaging Communities and Stakeholders. These tenets have enabled Dr. Mims to successfully foster climates and cultures of collaboration and establish consensus between diverse stakeholder groups (with sometimes competing and conflicting interests), promote transparency, facilitate dialogue and critical reflection within school-wide communities regarding (student learning) outcomes, and empower stakeholder groups to make needs-based decisions; in an effort to improve student achievement.
Dr, Mims, also enjoyed a successful nine-year teaching and supervisory career working with high-risk youth in the San Diego County Office of Education’s Juvenile Court and Community Schools. My professional experiences afforded me the skill and acumen to collaborate with community-based organizations, business leaders, and public agencies to cultivate, implement, refine, and sustain many innovative quality enrichment and intervention programs for high-risk youth during my JCCS tenure—some of which still exist to this day. His background and skills have also been invaluable resources to draw upon when serving the needs of culturally and socio-economically diverse students, as well as collaborating with, engaging, and maintaining healthy relationships with divergent stakeholder groups.
Bruce Mims: On Planning Instruction
As I read through many articles and blog posts about good lesson design, I keep coming across a curious and recurring theme that’s often overlooked in the details. I find it curious, because it’s an interesting concept that comes with a lot of assumptions regarding how different people view their profession in terms of the constantly evolving dynamic of teaching and learning in the information age: planning. Seems simple? True, but not so simple when one digs deeper into the “non-discussable” elements of the teaching profession—almost to a paradox. Read More
Bruce Mims: Poverty and its Impact on Student Learning Outcomes
I was reading an article over the weekend about poverty and its detrimental impact on education. It got me thinking about it in terms of the big picture in the sense that poverty is the greatest obstacle or hindrance to public education in the scope and context of our crazed obsession on testing. In retrospect, it’s really too bad that idea got lost in the Vergara argument, because the rhetoric that was used to win the day was laced with inconsistencies and false pretenses as it relates to poverty and its overall effect on students and their learning outcomes. The Vergara decision has only accelerated the madness, especially as it relates to Value Added Measures. Read More
Bruce Mims: On Change and Shift in Teaching and Learning
I spend a lot of my time and efforts in my dialogue in terms of education talking about change and shift in public education. In fact, the mantra I tout quite often is, “nothing in life is guaranteed but change and shift; it’ll either happen through us or to us, so we need to embrace it.” That phrase resonates for many things, but especially in education—and especially now. I’m at a point with what I keep reading in many dialogue strands, it’s no wonder education is so messed up: we keep making the same mistakes over and over again, yet we all expect something different to happen. Honestly, but respectfully, “NO”, it doesn’t work that way—ever. We’ve really got to start looking for different ways to solve our problems and move forward with public education. We are at a critical crossroads on many fronts; some would go further and argue we’re either at a tipping point or a breaking point. I think the reality is somewhere in between the two extremes. Read More