NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
ERIC Number: EJ776299
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Sep-12
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0277-4232
Getting Serious about Preparation
Olson, Lynn
Education Week, v27 n3 pS3-S5, S8 Sep 2007
For decades, preservice training for principals looked something like this: While working as teachers, they took occasional courses at an education school on such topics as school finance, law, and educational theory. After a few years, they completed a culminating field assignment, which might have involved shadowing their own principals. Then candidates applied for jobs in administration. This article describes the shift in the forms of principal preparation. The focus is less on creating efficient managers than on preparing individuals who can lead a school to higher student achievement. Would-be principals now go through their courses of study in a predetermined order, and in cohorts with others in the same program. Seminars build upon one another to produce candidates who know how to analyze instruction, create learning opportunities for teachers, and strategize about how to move a school forward based on data. Field experiences start early and involve the actual exercise of leadership in a school building. Additionally, districts are taking on a larger role in shaping school leadership, from who gets admitted to training programs to how they are mentored and evaluated. The reasons for the shift are clear. The push for unprecedented levels of improvement in student performance, epitomized by the federal No Child Left Behind Act, requires a different kind of leadership: focused on instruction and achievement. The Southern Regional Education Board, which represents 16 states, urges states to adopt rigorous, well-defined standards for school leaders; provide a curriculum framework to guide program redesign; create an external process for auditing the quality of program curricula; and strengthen accountability for results, including measures of graduates' on-the-job performance and the achievement of students in their schools.
Editorial Projects in Education. 6935 Arlington Road Suite 100, Bethesda, MD 20814-5233. Tel: 800-346-1834; Tel: 301-280-3100; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A