Dan Swatek

Dan Swatek

Dan Swatek is the elementary principal at Cardinal Elementary School in Nebraska, which he helped lead to Model PLC status in 2018. Throughout his nearly twenty-year career as an educator, he has also served as an assistant principal, middle school teacher, and head coach.


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Dan Swatek

Dan Swatek is the elementary principal at Cardinal Elementary School in Nebraska, which he helped lead to Model PLC status in 2018. Throughout his nearly twenty-year career as an educator, he has also served as an assistant principal, middle school teacher, and head coach.

As a principal, Dan is passionate about strengthening learning for all. He focuses on implementing the three big ideas of the PLC at Work® process—a focus on learning, creating a collaborative culture, and staying focused on results. His expertise is in improving school systems based on the four critical questions of the PLC at Work process has helped Cardinal go from a school in need of improvement to being ranked a great school.

Cardinal has built a culture of shared leadership and collaboration, and teams have a shared understanding of aligning curriculum with assessments and providing interventions. Cardinal has not only been recognized as a Model PLC school, but the PLC process has elevated all staff. The school is home to the 2018 Nebraska Teacher of the Year and the 2018 Friend of Autism Award–winning special education team. In addition, Cardinal was chosen to be featured in a documentary that highlights its collaborative culture.

Dan earned his bachelor's degree in elementary education and a master’s degree in administration from the University of South Dakota.

PLC at Work®

PLC at Work® experts have proven success in leading the PLC at Work process in a school or district. Work with them to implement a focus on learning, build a collaborative culture, and create a results orientation that leads to sustained, substantive school improvement.

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