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Thought Leadership Collaborative


May 2019

Career Superhighway - Journey Map - Education Week

April 2019

Using Community Ideas to Shape the Vision for a Career Superhighway - Education Week 

Change Agent Leadership - ASU+GSV Summit  

Transforming High School by Engaging Student Voice: Co-Creating Learning Experiences - Education Week 

March 2019

Transforming High School by Co-Creating Learning Experiences with Students - Education Week 


February 2019

Using Design Thinking to Set the Vision for a Career Superhighway - Education Week 


Transforming High School by Engaging Student Autonomy - Education Week 


January 2019

Setting the Vision for Creating a Career Superhighway - Education Week 


Transforming High School by Supporting Student Self-Discovery - Education Week 



December 2018 


Family Engagement: The Gold Standard for Achievement - Education Week 


Transforming High School by Supporting Student Self-Discovery - Education Week 


November 2018


Transforming High School by Challenging Student to Solve Real Problems - Education Week 



October 2018


Transforming High School by Creating an Environment of Wellness - Education Week 



September 2018


Is School A Competition? - Education Week 


Vista High School Gets Personal - Deborah Sullivan Brennan



August 2018


Creating a Career Superhighway - Education Week 


Using innovation to focus on making school more relevant to kids - Lisa Deaderick, Union Tribune 


The world of work heats up for high school students in Vista - San Diego Workforce Partnership 


What San Diego High School Faculty Learned After a Year of Personalized Learning - Michael Elsen-Rooney



May 2018


iCERP: Building a Research/Practice Partnership - Education Week


Summit Panel Tackles Definition of Personalized Learning - Education Drive


April 2018


Virtual Center in Vista District to Expand Educational Research Deborah Sullivan Brennan


New Vista Education Center Asks 'How can we help kids learn?" Deborah Sullivan Brennan 


March 2018


Measuring the Impact of Personal Learning - Education Week 


February 2018


VUSD Part of Research Project Awarded $2.5. - Laura Groch 


Building Student Agency in Learning Pathways - Education Week


2018 Parents Guide to San Diego Schools - Voice of San Diego


January 2018


The School Principal as Change Agent - Education Week



December 2017


A New Education-Research Practice Center: Early. Personal. Relevant - Education Week 


It Takes a Village: Talent Cities at Vista Unified - Amanda Avallone


How One California District is Giving Learner-Centered School More Choice - Lauren Faggella


November 2017


Talent Cities: A New Public-Private Partnership for Middle School - Education Week


October 2017


5 Lessons  from Implementing Personal Learning - Education Week


One Sight Mobile Vision Clinic Visits Vista Unified - Michelle Sybert


Superintendent's Letter to the Community - Dr. Matt Doyle 


Leading U.S. Educators Visit Vista Classrooms - Next Generation Learning Challenge 


September 2017


Vista Unified's P-3 Continuum: Closing the Achievement Gap Before It Opens - Education Week


August 2017


Superintendent's Welcome Back Message - Dr. Matt Doyle 


Mission Vista High School Named National Top 10 Magnet Demonstration School - Magnet Schools of America


Three Steps Towards Building Vista Unified's Three Brushstrokes - Education Week 


Vista High Orientation Launches 'High School of the Future' - Deborah Brennan Sullivan


July 2017


School Transformation in Three Broad Brush Strokes:Early, Personal, Relevant - Education Week 


When Personalized Learning Includes Skateboarding: One Suburban's District's Dramatic Transformation - Mike Elsen-Rooney


June 2017


Vista Unified Sets Sights on Personal Learning 2.0: Powerful Performance Frameworks - Education Week 


May 2017


Dr. Matt Doyle's Community Letter as Interim Superintendent - Matt Doyle


Vista Unified Year-End Summary of Success - Matt Doyle


April 2017


Sneak Preview of the International Center for Educational Research and Practice - Dave Palmer 


March 2017


Vista Students Get Window Into the Workplace - Deborah Sullivan Brennan


Vista's "Talent City" Campaign Expands - Vista Press


Talent Cities Press Release - Dave Palmer


The Talent Cities Solution - Gerri Burton 


California Dashboard Charts Path to Education Improvements - Deborah Sullivan Brennan


February 2017


Linking Schools to Businesses - Matt Doyle 


Keep and Eye on Transformation at Vista Unified Schools - Grant Lichtman


Strengthening Early Literacy - Devin Vodicka 


How Two Innovative School District Prepare Students for the Future - Digital Promise 


October 2016


Vista Receives Golden Bell Award for Personal Learning Challenge - Dave Palmer


Jenny Anderson Is Named San Diego and California Teacher of the Year - Tom Torlakson


September 2016


A New Model for Education - KUSI News


Vista High becomes an XQ Super School - Deborah Sullivan Brennan


Time Magazine Showcases XQ Super Schools - Katie Reilly 


XQ Prize is Result of District Transformation - Gerri Burton 


August 2016


School District Takes a Moon Shot with Personalized Learning - Ray Huard 


July 2016


Learning Ecosystem Readiness Report - Gerri Burton 


June 2016


Personal Learning Status Report - Dr. Matt Doyle


XQ Vista Challenge High Press Release - Dave Palmer 


May 2016


Vista Unified Hailed as Innovators by Educators & Entrepreneurs Around the Globe - Ray Huard 


The Learning Counsel Highlights Vista's Personal Learning 


Education in the Digital Age - Deborah Sullivan Brennan 


April 2016


The School District of the Future is a Learning Ecosystem 


Personal Learning is our Moonshot


Summit marries technology, educators and investors - Maureen Magee


Educators’ ‘TED’ Talks-Style Forum Leads Up to ASU+GSV Summit - Michelle Molnar 


Bill Gates to Ed. Tech. industry: 'Engage Teachers.' - Maureen Magee


Good Schools for All: Kindergarten Slaps you in the Face - Kinsee Morlan


Voice of San Diego Pod Cast - Kindergarten Readiness


INEXs Administrator Collaboration Meetings


Meeting Dates: Oct. 8, Oct. 22, Nov. 26, Feb. 25, Apr. 22


INEXs Agendas


Innovation Agendas


RTM Congress - March 4, 2019


Transforming Learning Workshop Resources


Change Agent Leadership Slide Deck

Career Superhighway Slide Deck 





Learning Journey to Vista Unified - February 7, 2019


Mission Vista High School Resources





February 6, 2019


Mission Vista High School Resources 





Visioning Process


Session 2 - Visioning - February 28, 2019



Session 1 - Visioning - January 16, 2018


Session 2 Level Setting - December 11, 2018


Session 1 Level Setting - November 15, 2018 

Vista Unified School District Featured







Watch the Video of Dr. Doyle and Anthony Barela


Watch the Video of VUSD Students


Presentation Slides


PL Pathway


PL Attributes

Vista Unified Announces Talent Cities

Talent Cities is a cohesive integrated approach to workforce development involving Vista Unified, The Vista Chamber, San Diego Workforce Partnership, local businesses, and the City of Vista. Click here for more information.



Service Learning in Vista

Service Learning allows students to take the skills and knowledge they are developing in the classroom and apply them to real world problems. Click here for more information.



Student Voice Leads XQ Super School Design




Vista Unified is committed to reaching our vision to become the model of educational excellence and innovation.  To this end, we realize that the best learning environment is one that envelops students in all facets of their life; and one that focuses on each student's strengths, interests and values. Building a learning ecosystem requires a new paradigm of partnership with businesses, entrepreneurs, civic leaders, parents, government agencies, non-profit organizations and philanthropic organizations. 


The Vista Unified Thought Leadership Collaborative is our vessel of change.  It is a vehicle that houses our plans and aspirations, our ideas and conversations.  Its goal is to bring the best of our minds together and look at things in new ways with new, broader purposes.  Mostly it is intended to share the lessons we learn from the journey we are on — a journey that will take us to a new form of school district.  In our public schools, we now see emerging a learning ecosystem that begins pre-natal and continues lifelong.  This is a journey intended to reshape the community and the local economy, keeping kids in school, seeking full potential and creating talent that fuels local business and high priority sectors and industries yet to be defined.  Through the Thought Leadership Collaborative we truly intend to break the mold in ways that can only be accomplished by transforming the American school district.  We invite to join us on this journey.  Be prepared to begin a conversation that may take many forms and many possibilities.


Vista High Selected as XQ Finalist


Achieving Our Vision



A Learning Ecosystem


Educator Tours

Thank you for your interest in Vista schools. Educator tours are intended for school administrators, educational partners and researchers who are interested in the pedagogy, research and applicability of our school model in other schools around the country.


Please click here to complete an interest form.


Learning Journey to Vista Unified - January 29, 2019


Welcome Next Generation Learning Challenges!

Click HERE to check out the video of the event. 


Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Vista Innovation Center

Vista High School

Rancho Minerva Middle School

Leadership Advance 2017

Students at the Center


Day 1 - July 25, 2017

Day 2 - July 26, 2017 

Vista Innovation Center for Educational Research and Practice

Vista Educators will use this webpage to engage in collaborative learning opportunities with colleagues within Vista Unified and across the country for the purpose of transforming the learning experience for all students by creating a continuous improvement ecosystem. 


Workshop and Collaboration Archive 




PL Pathway Workshops

  • Educator Workshop #1
  • Administrator Workshop #1
  • Educator Workshop #2
  • Administrator Workshop #2


Self-Directed Learning Workshops

Curriculum Mapping Workshops

  • Administrator Workshop #1



Creativity and Critical Thinking Workshops

  • School Team Workshop #1
    • Agenda 

Vista Unified is highlighted at 




Educator Tour 

February 16, 2017

Slide Deck





Vista Unified is highlighted at



Vista Highlighted at ASU-GSV


Click HERE to download the presentation. 

Leadership and Innovation Retreat 2017

Leadership Advance 2016