The Power of Quality Principals


Steve etc


The Queens University of Charlotte Educational Leadership Program has developed an interesting infographic that you can embed on your website and share with others. The collective information presents an optimistic view of Principals:

85% of teachers believe that their Principal is doing an excellent or “pretty good” job. 

That’s up 12 points from 1986. Part of this positivity may come from the fact that many school administrators are seen as supporting their teachers against the incursion of federal or state mandates, heavier standardized testing, and often Superintendents and School Boards that like to impose edicts that teachers consider inappropriate. 

For those Principals that are rated highly…

40% of teachers stated increased collaboration time and 42% stated greater opportuneness for professional development as reasons their Principals are “excellent”.

This is heartening as teacher collaboration and PD are two important factors in increasing student achievement over time. We know that the through research of Professional Learning Communities, the more that teachers remain connected, the greater students benefit. 

Effective Principals account for 25% of a school’s impact on student performance gains while teachers account for 33%.

It’s difficult to quantify a building administrator’s role in school improvement. But much has been written about the importance of Principal continuity. In this infographic it is stated that:

High achieving schools are 50% more likely to have the same Principal for six or more years. This is 71% more likely in high poverty schools.

Of course, the purpose of the Queens University work is to highlight not only the influence a Principal can have but to bring more into the field (and into their education leadership program). They claim that:

There will be nearly 90,000 Principal job openings by 2020 – that’s a 10% projected demand growth over 10 years. There are nearly nine applicants for every opening.


While our colleges and universities keep on turning out plenty of teachers, clearly more than our state can support, (especially in the elementary world), it is difficult to find qualified administrators from our pool of veteran teachers. As I consider a world without Bill Carozza as Principal in my school, nothing would please me more than to leave the building leadership in the hands of a Harold Martin colleague upon my departure. While I would never claim I work more hours than my teachers – check our parking lot on the weekends – it is a more scattered position with a crazy “variety” of tasks and responsibilities. Admittedly, the skill set is different than a classroom teacher’s but there are still an adequate supply of qualified candidates out there. It’s a matter of convincing educators that this is a viable and valuable job and perhaps…an adventure.  

2 comments Add yours
  1. Bill, you so support the excellence in NH schools. Agree there are lots of educators who do, but we are not making that case strongly enough .. we need to all work together to overcome those who are unaware of the evidence.

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