Read Leader Commendations About GDS Consulting.
As a Superintendent, I believe that the skill and knowledge of our people is our most valuable asset. The work and responsibilities of the building principal have changed and become more complex over time. A necessary skill that all successful leaders have is the ability to lead change to improve outcomes for all students. HUSD has added the talent of Gary Soto to its arsenal to support the development of our leaders so that we are responsive and successful in meeting the needs of our students. Mr. Soto’s individualized approach to coaching and his expertise related to instruction and leadership has assisted HUSD to create a team of principals that are prepared to fulfill the moral obligation of public education in our Nation, providing responsive learning environments that meet the individual needs of every child that Hemet Unified serves.
Dr. Christi Barrett PhD.
Superintendent, Hemet Unified School District
The insight and leadership of Gary Soto were important in the successful work we accomplished in the Phoenix Union High School District and are now beginning across Fort Worth ISD. He provided us an effective, applicable and clear roadmap for success. Education is the primary means through which students become equipped to take part in our democracy. That is Gary’s powerful message.
Dr. Kent Scribner
Superintendent, Fort Worth Independent School District
Working with Gary is a compelling journey in the development of leadership skills. His effective coaching dynamic empowers me to recognize critical insights that help to move our school forward in a short timespan. The development of an integrated literacy program that is systematic yet unique to our Project Based Learning school site has been transformational. In one year, we made school wide improvements in our TK- 8 literacy program that add up to a comprehensive, flexible system that allows us to focus on each and every student’s success.
K-8 Principal, Upland Unified School District
Gary understands the necessity of equity in education and spreads that message by the way he interacts with those around him. We feel inspired after just a few minutes with Gary, and when he spends a day coaching, he leaves our leaders feeling empowered. With his support, PVUSD has broken a 25-year failing streak to be in the top districts posting gain in our county.
Dr. Charles Bush
Former Superintendent, Palo Verde Unified School District
They say people buy into a leader before they buy into the vision. Gary’s belief that ALL students and adults can and will improve sets him in the top 1% of successful and effective leaders. Gary has been directly involved in providing professional development and comprehensive coaching to thousands of school administrators. Any district fortunate to hire Gary as their instructional coach will reap the benefits. Best of all, the students will be prepared to meet the challenges of the future.
Founder, Illuminate Education
Gary Soto unlocks the leadership beast within you! With a laser-like focus, Gary provides expert coaching to help you maximize your performance via a thorough analysis of your current system. He then works alongside you to customize a blueprint focused on effective instructional criteria to meet your school’s needs and achieve results.
K-5 Principal, Hemet Unified School District
Gary has transformed Prek-12 districts and schools throughout the country to devotedly implement results-based reform that has significantly increased student achievement for ALL students. There is abundant evidence of his work to support learning for all student groups. I have collaborated with Gary D. Soto and I have personally had significance in my success that directly impacts student achievement.
Dr. Martinrex Kedziora
Superintendent, Moreno Valley Unified School District
Gary’s ability to connect with students and staff alike is impressive. The training Gary has provided to our site and district administrators have positively impacted student engagement districtwide. Gary’s genuine belief that ALL students can achieve at high levels is contagious throughout every facet of our system. The Nuview Union School District has worked with Gary for the better part of 10 years and will continue to do so in the foreseeable future.
Superintendent, Nuview Union School District
I am a better CBO because of Gary Soto. During the time of the severe budget cut years, Beaumont USD cut the instructional year to 175 days. Gary as our consultant recommended that we adopt math and ELA materials and provide training in order to improve instruction in our district. I attend a training for teachers that would help them make better use of their teaching abilities in the classroom. Student achievement is the utmost of importance and, I saw how valuable the training was, so I had to work with all stakeholders to find funding and make the instruction of our students in a shorter year more effective. This action kept the district from going into Program Improvement. His insight into what is needed to be an effective administrator goes without saying, not only in instruction but in the business aspects of a school district.
Chief Business Officer and Governmental Relations, Riverside Unified School District
I met Gary Soto while overseeing the academic programs for 47 schools across the United States. We were successful but were measuring our success in a completely arbitrary way, setting the bar too low for our students. I had also become disenfranchised and doubted that school reform was anything more than a dream. Gary’s mentoring and brilliant mind helped me craft a blueprint for success, creating metrics and operationalizing our school program to make sure that ALL children can be successful and that we as schools create the conditions of their success. This process made us a better system of schools. The success that ensued would have been enough, but Gary inspired me to become a better educator and restored my faith in education reform. Gary has already made a difference in the lives of thousands of children across the country and we cannot wait to see what he does next!
Executive Director, Charter Schools
Gary’s visionary leadership and support of school district and site administrators is second to none and grounded in his belief that ALL students can learn and succeed at high levels. Gary leads districts and schools to develop a tight focus on student achievement, align programs, practices and procedures, and ensure high expectations and expanded learning opportunities for administrators looking to improve student learning and close achievement gaps. Districts and leaders looking to improve student learning for all of its students will benefit immensely by working with Gary.
Ryan R. Gonzales
Director, Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District
I have had the opportunity to attend many different conferences and professional development opportunities over 20 plus years in education and can say without a doubt, the one that had the most profound impact on me was led by Gary. His ability to challenge you as a school or district leader, will make sure that you are aligned with student achievement throughout your entire organization.
Assistant Superintendent, Nuview Union School District
Gary’s expertise is holding leaders to stay the course through transitional growth. As a new superintendent, his coaching has inspired me and challenged me to set OMI on a path to excellence. My work with Gary has empowered myself and my staff to question the status quo in education and to make systematic changes at OMI that put our entire organizational focus where it belongs, on our students.
Founder, Changing the Game Consulting
Crimes Against Learning: Solving the Serial Failure of School Reform
It is past time for us to organize around results for all students. We have had answers for decades and have ignored them. Schools continue to prepare our students for a past that no longer exists. We have ignored the research, and we have ignored the future our students will face when they leave school. We must shed the archaic, Industrial Age assumptions and structures that are preventing sustainable reforms.