Adrian is currently engaged as an Independent Consultant with Sapience Leadership LLC, a newly formed company out of the University of Pennsylvania’s Penn Center for Innovation, in the PCI Ventures UPSTART Portfolio.
Adrian Manuel is currently leading a school turnaround effort as the new principal of a large Middle School in Long Island, New York. He is focused on transforming an urban middle school of 1500 students into a robust campus of small learning communities driven by professional communities of practice.
Adrian brings over 18 years of leadership experience in urban education. Most recently, he served as the Head of School at the SEED School of Washington, D.C.; the nation’s first urban public charter boarding school. The SEED School graduates over 90% of students per year and sends over 95% of its graduates to four year colleges. As Head of School, Adrian managed the senior leadership team and led the strategic planning and implementation efforts.
Prior to SEED, Adrian led two successful turnaround schools in his role as both a middle and high school principal in New York. As a high school principal, he dramatically increased the graduation rate (over 20%), launched an early college program and created a campus of small learning communities. During his time as a middle school principal, Adrian’s efforts turned a previously failing school to one of the top performing schools in New York City. His experience as a transformational leader began early in his career when he founded the College Prep Academy, a successful middle school small learning community, during his second year teaching.
Adrian brings a rich practice-based experience in change management. He is a systems thinker who enjoys designing strategies that can sustain organizational learning and adaptive capacity. As such, he is also passionate about developing highly impactful teams. Known as an innovative leader, Adrian tends to focus on strategies that can lead to breakthrough transformation. He recently launched ALT Ed, an independent consulting company that helps leaders develop systems for inquiry and organizational learning.
Adrian has earned an Ed.D in Educational Leadership and Organizational Management from the University of Pennsylvania’s Mid Career Doctoral Program in Education Leadership. He holds a Master of Science in Public Administration from Baruch College, a Master of Arts in Secondary Education from Lehman College and a Bachelor degree in History from New York University. Adrian is also a graduate of the New York City Leadership Academy.