Ed. Dept. Puts Spotlight on Principals’ Central Role

ED Focusing Increasingly On Principals’ Role.

Education Week (12/1, Superville) reports that ED has recently “trained its efforts on principals by rolling out a series of initiatives that build on the growing body of research underscoring the role they play in schools’ success.” The article paints this as “a departure” for Education Secretary Arne Duncan’s focus during President Obama’s first term, and notes that ED’s programs “focus primarily on school improvement and professional development and training for selected principals.” The piece notes that the National Association of Elementary School Principals and the National Association of Secondary School Principals “say the new focus is heartening, but more action is needed,” noting that both associations “have asked for more funding for the School Leadership Program.” The article adds that some observers see the appointment of Assistant Secretary for Elementary and Secondary Education Deborah Delisle “as the pivotal moment for the department’s emphasis on principals,” and quotes her saying, “I am very aware that while a school or a school district may adopt higher standards, for example, that unless there is a school culture in which the principal and teachers share a common vision that all students can succeed, then the standards won’t really mean anything at all. It’s not just to have an awesome staff, but it’s certainly to have a visionary, courageous leader at the helm.”

Source: www.edweek.org

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