Districts can take steps to improve the quality of leadership in their schools by ensuring that principals are well-trained when they’re hired and fully supported once they’re in schools, says a new report from the Wallace Foundation.
A “well-crafted district strategy to promote better school leadership” is important, the report says, because “effective principals offer perhaps the surest route to effective teaching.”
Among the strategies the report highlights are: making hiring needs and standards clear to candidates and preparation programs; having formative, clear principal evaluations; supporting and training principals’ supervisors; and providing mentoring and access to useful data. Generally, it adds, districts should have clear and comprehensive school leadership plans.
The report also includes examples of work from around the country, especially from six districts that are part of Wallace’s Principal Pipeline initiative: New York City; Gwinnett County, Ga.; Denver; Charlotte-Mecklenburg, N.C.; Hillsborough County, Fla.; and Prince George’s County, Md.
The New York City-based foundation also supports coverage of leadership, arts education, and extended and expanded learning time in Education Week.
A version of this article appeared in the March 06, 2013 edition of Education Week as School Leaders